Another storm lies in the Gulf churning, building strength to wreak havoc upon the Gulf Coast. It’s the same ole song and dance every year. Rain brings humidity and humidity brings misery. September in Mississippi is an additional summer month. “Fall? Never heard of her” is the popular sayin’ around here.
I live in the northern part of the state. The mosquitos isn’t as bad as they are down in the southern portion of Mississippi. I’ve heard tell of mosquitos big enough to carry children off in the dead of night. That’s a big mosquito. Y’all ever read that article that says everything in Australia is trying to kill you? Well, pretty much everything here is trying to bite you, infect you, or take your EBT card. Sometimes, they do all three.
Well, it seems I done gone down a rabbit trail here. Speakin’ of which, y’all ever had rabbit and gravy before? No? Man, y’all missing out. I suppose I should finish this report. We had a killin’ down here. Some lowdown nobody done got wound up and took a shotgun to a trailer. Everybody inside is dead. For the life of me, I can’t figure why they had a problem with the trailer. Maybe it wasn’t sitting level. There was enough meth inside to keep ‘em buzzing for a good six months, and more money than I could shake a stick at. I thought about trying to change my financial situation. I didn’t, but man I thought something hard. Ah well…
Hmmm? I ain’t told y’all who I am?
Oh. I’m Sheriff Derrick Slick. Sorry, I got to conversatin’, and I forgot to do the introductions. Nice to meet y’all. Anyway, I gotta finish this report. It ain’t gonna write itself. I tell you though, that trailer was a grisly scene. One ole gal got shot in the tummy. Man, it tore her giblets out all over the couch. An ole boy lay on the floor, his body was in pieces. He was shot so many times, we lost count. Another gal was in the kitchen. Sweet tea was on her torso, but half her head was in the hallway. Then it got bad. This riled up heathen took a machete to somebody. There was blood and brain matter everywhere. There was no trace of the killer’s DNA, just a ring and a note in crayon. The message was spooky, it just said:
“I told you…”
Kinda makes you wonder what kind of heathen takes a machete to a human being. The recipient of said rage lost her hands, feet and eyeballs. Her ears were left intact.
“Hey, Sheriff! We got another one!” I put my pencil down and stare out my door. A deputy bursts into my office, red-faced, eyes bulging out. He bends over at the waist and takes several deep breaths.
“Whatcha mean we got another one?” The deputy waves his hand around like voodoo witch doctor. “Down the road, Sheriff. From where the last bodies were found, they found another crime scene. It’s nasty.”
“Gimme the address.” He writes it down and hands it to me. “Here. What do you want me to do now, Sheriff?” I pat him on the back and walk out to the lobby. He trails behind me like a lost puppy. “Stay here,” I said. “Rest. I’ll yell if I need you.” He pulls out a chair next to the receptionist and strikes up a conversation with, Peggy. I put on my Stetson and walk out into the sunshine. “Looks like things are falling apart. Guess it all makes some kinda sense. Lord help us.”
The drive to the new crime scene is slow. The vibrant green of the leaves, mixed with the saffron color that is a sign fall is upon us, makes for a pretty view. I take it all in. My window is down, the crisp air smells wonderful. I pull up next to an abandoned house. Flashing lights and yellow tape let me know I am in the right location.
“Howdy, Sheriff.” Richter Williams, my longest serving deputy, gives me a wave. I walk over to him and extend my hand. “Howdy, Ric. What do we have here?” Ric is pushing fifty, his skin is always yellowish. Some people say it’s a permanent case of jaundice. His eyes are huge. We often joke he is part gaspago.
“You ain’t eat lunch yet, have you?” I put my hand on my hat and shake my head no. “That bad, huh?” Ric nods. “Yep, it’s bad. Come on.”