Scorpion's Reach, 'After Action'
From the writer
Last week we left Joey 'taking care of business' in his own inimitable style. Faced with six more more bikers determined to do the family some serious harm, Joey swung into action and mayhem ensued, but the family got away, but was that the end of things?
The cops are also asking questions about the whole affair, especially about the seeming strange, or wrong report that Murray filed, they have more questions than answers, and Sandy really doesn't like that!
What, if anything are they going to find out?
Is that how things will end?
Lets find out what happened next.
Take the next left" Hene said as they came round the bend, he and Sam were on State highway three just as it left the small Hamlet about twenty klicks south of Te Kuiti, they were up in the 'sheep country' of the Southern Waikato, that meant snow capped mountains and deep valleys.
"You sure you've got the right place?" Sam sounded unsure; she was a 'city girl'. She could cope with anything the city could throw at her, but out here, in the 'middle of nowhere' who knows what could be lurking around?
"Yes sarge" Hene replied slightly sarcastically, she glanced over and saw the smile on his face, he wasn't looking at her, he was concentrating on the map, Hene seemed 'at home' here, though he wasn't from round these parts, he just seemed to know his way round the bush, he'd spent the whole trip pointing out a 'type of bush here' or a 'bird' that she couldn't really see anyway, but that hadn't stopped him explaining about some of the creatures on the trip, it was enjoyable, but they were there for business, and she kept that in mind.
“Are they expecting us?” Hene asked as they turned onto one of the smaller roads.
"I tried a couple of times to get through!" She said, "all I got was the lines were down!"
"Kind of a long way to come Sarge" he replied just that little bit concerned, "not knowing if they're going to be here"
"Not really" she replied, "The cycling victim's family own the farm, and the funeral's tomorrow, they won't be far away, besides you heard the hospital, someone's been to visit the woman every day, and stayed most of the day!"
"The hospital confirmed the address?"
"Yep" she replied, "and they said there's someone by the phone all the time, they also confirmed the phone number too, before you ask!" She glanced over at the young cop, he was preoccupied with the map.
They'd used Google maps to find the place, and get the directions, so it'd just been a case of 'follow instructions' though they were a bit outdated as some of the roads they were told to take were closed off for building a bypass for a couple of the small towns.
"The driveway should be a couple of hundred yards up this track" Hene pointed to a mettled road going off to the right, there was a small wood down about a hundred or so yards down the road, he thought he saw a dirt track leading off, "just by the wood!" He pointed in the general direction.
"That must be the house then?" Sam half stated and half asked no one in particular, "over there, past the gully, see it?"
"Yep" Hene replied, "pull over and I'll get the gate"
A small ditch separated the road from a typical farmers fence, with livestock on the other side the chances were the fence was electrified, not that there would be much current running through, just enough to remind the animals not to wander too near.
Hene jumped out of the car and began navigating the cattle grid when a northern English voice spoke. "I wouldn't touch that gate mate, if we're you!"
He was half way through reaching for it, he half turned, and as he did the hand dropped slightly, just brushing the top of the gate. The pain was excruciating! It felt like someone wrenched the arm out of the socket at the same time as kicking him hard in the ribs, he flew back and almost fell into the cattle grid, " SHIT THAT HURT!" He screamed holding his side's, truth was he didn't know which hurt the most!
"Now who the hell are you?"
"Told you dumbass!" the voice came back, "typical idiot won't bloody well listen!"
"You could have given me more warning" he was still holding his side, "who the hell are you anyway?"
The 'figure' had stepped out into the clear now, Hene could see he was tall, probably a shade under six feet, white, spoke with a northern English accent, probably 'Geordie' but he wasn't that good placing English accents. The guy was filthy and scruffy with a couple of days stubble, but otherwise looked fit, he was suspicious, why was this guy here?
"Let's just say I'm a 'friend of a friend' who needs a bit of help shall we!" The man said. "And he doesn't want any more 'unannounced visitors', so no one gets past without telling me who they are, RIGHT! Now, again who are you?" He stood on the other side of the gate, looking directly at Hene.
Sam got out of the car, she'd seen and heard what was going on, it didn't make sense, but then again, nothing about this case made any bloody sense! "What's going on?" She demanded flashing the warrant card, "Sergeant Samantha Hughes, Auckland serious crimes unit," she identified herself, "and this is Officer Hene Kingi, Thames police" she nodded in Hene's direction, "now what the hell's going on?"
"Hold up a moment" Smithy replied, he turned, took a small walkie-talkie from his belt, it was a hand held Motorola VHF with a range of about two miles, Hene had seen them used on farms before, Smithy spoke into it, they didn't hear what he said, but it was obvious he was happy with the reply.
The conversation took about fifteen seconds, then he replaced the radio before reaching for the gate that was when they noticed he was wearing heavy rubber gloves, the electricity didn't bother him, "take your vehicle" he said to them as he pointed to the car, "Joey and Sandy will explain what you need to know"
It took a couple of seconds for things to register, "move your arses then!" Smithy gave them a verbal prod.
As soon as they were through the gate they saw the first glimpse of the carnage that awaited them. Two big motorbikes on their sides, the front forks and tyres mangled, headlights smashed, the damage that happens when you hit something at speed!
"Ouch," Sam spoke first, "hope they were wearing crash helmets!" It was probably one of the dumbest things to say, but it just came out without much thought.
"We know who came off second best!" Hene replied. "Normally I'd be looking for the tree, this time it might not have been one!"
"Yeah," Sam agreed, "pretty scary dude, wouldn't like to meet him on a dark night, would you?" She glanced over at Hene; he was thinking, "penny for them?" She asked.
"Eh, err what?" He snapped back to reality.
"Penny for your thoughts" she said again.
“Just wondering,” he began, “who the bloody hell these people are? And what the heck they’re doing here?” They carried on up the drive, past four more bikes, this time they were in much better working order, but no sign of the riders, in fact no sign of anyone, it was too quiet for comfort, then they saw the scorch marks on the ground.
“OHH Shit!” It was Hene broke the silence as they stepped out of the car, the scorch mark was in the middle of the drive and was pretty strange as there were only stones there, pebbles to be more precise, and they were the wrong colour! They should have been an off white, but were a dirty brown instead, a sure sign of high temperature and an accelerant, then there was the broken glass, it was everywhere! “What the?” he didn’t finish the question.
“I think we’re about to find out!” Sam cut him off “They’re coming” it was almost like a warning, and both of them were bloody uneasy, Sam had pepper spray in her bag, she slowly began reaching for it, trying not to look too obvious, Hene wasn’t carrying any weapons, except a small can of pepper spray on his belt, he unclipped the holster ‘just in case’
A strange welcome. and 'unwelcome visitors'
“Hello Officer Kingi” the figure, a slight female form came out of the main house, “So sorry to meet up again like this,” Sandy walked towards them, she held out her hands in welcome, something they weren’t expecting, “and you must be Sergeant Hughes right?” she turned and addressed Sam directly, “sorry about all this, but we had some unwelcome visitors last night!” she gestured to the marks on the ground, and the bikes without riders, “but we’ll get onto that later, I’m just about to make coffee for the boys, would you like some?” she started leading them back to the house.
Not sure what to do, or how to react, Sam found herself accepting the offer of coffee and cake, Hene was a little wary, but Sandy seemed friendly enough. “What happened here? If you don’t mind me asking?” he began.
“Some visitors showed up!” Sandy began as they entered the kitchen.
Joey was there in the kitchen waiting for the kettle to boil, he’d already got the bodum coffee pot out, he was pouring the first coffees, “Sorry folks, but I’m taking these to the lads.” He had a flask for one and the other was in a big ceramic mug, he headed outside.
“As I was saying some pretty unwelcome visitors showed up” Sandy began again, she cleaned the bodum out and set it up again with fresh ground coffee, “Apparently when we had the ‘accident’ the other week we saw something we weren’t meant to see!”
“We’re talking about the accident in which Mr Cavell was killed right?” Sam asked the question.
“I am” Sandy replied, “we knew something strange was going on, and this pretty much proves it!”
“Hang on, back up a bit!” Sam cut in, “he may have met you then, but I’m here for another reason I’m here about”
Meet a famous Kiwi spy
Everything revealed, nothing recorded, on government orders!
“A break in at Mr Cavell’s apartment” Sandy cut her off. “You found the details about the break in, realized it was the owner of the car and who was killed in the accident, worked out we were there and came to see if we could shed any light on the matter right?”
It’s downright annoying when you have your ‘thunder’ stolen like that! Sam did her best to try and hide her annoyance, but it still showed through some, “What do you know about it?”
The coffee was ready, Sandy poured them each a cup and cut a slice of cake, neither of them saw her take two very tiny objects, no bigger than a grain of rice and inserted one into each piece of cake; she was banking on them being hungry. “I could tell you it’s because we watch the news!” She replied. “But I’d be lying, so I’ll cut straight to it as I’m pretty sure you suspect anyway, it was Joey placed the call alerting the Police, that was after he’d disarmed the thugs!”
They both nearly dropped their coffees, they sat there in stunned silence for a good five seconds, Sandy had just admitted to being at the scene of the break-in, or at least telling them that Joey was there! That meant things just got a whole lot more weird than they already were, and that was something they didn’t expect!
Sam was very slow and deliberate when she spoke next, “care to explain?” she asked.
“Gladly” Sandy replied, “but before I do I’ve got something to tell you, on your own government’s orders, not one word can be recorded!”
“Yeah right” Hene replied, “but I'm sorry, but we need to take the information down!”
“No, she’s right” a voice came from the back of the room, Joey had come back, “however I didn’t think you’d believe us, so if you’d follow me I’ll let you hear for yourself” he pointed to the living room.
There were three laptops set up on a desk in the corner, two were facing outwards, towards two chairs and the other seemed to be doing its own thing, but had a couple of mobile phones attached to it.
“What’s going on here?” Sam asked about the mobiles, wary and her hand hovering over the pepper spray.
“All in good time” Joey replied, “and relax with the spray” he moved the mouse that was between the two other laptops, they both came to life, there were people sat in conference rooms in both of them, one, an older man was in a room where it was either in a building with no windows or it was night, the other was a woman in her early fifties in a room with daylight, Sam recognized her straight away, and did not like where this was going one little bit!
It was the woman spoke up, “Hello Sergeant, sorry for all the ‘skullduggery’ but we had no idea you’d pick up on the trail”
© 2018 Lawrence Hebb