Tuesday, September 29, 2015

October Novel Essential Information

Novel Title: Dubious Arrangement
Time Setting: 2015
Genre: thriller
Minimum Word Goal: 120,000
Timespan: March-July
Location: Wainwright, Alberta
Main Character: Greyson Adler
Background Information: born the third son and fourth child of five to a fifth generation hog farmer from the area of Chinook, Alberta, he was raised in a typical evangelical Christian household.
When he was nine a grass fire began at a neighbouring form that caused five families to be evacuated. His family was not evacuated, and so he watched the fire with interest, even terrorizing his family by going closer to it so he could better see it, being as the fire and firefighters intrigued him.
As the firefighters succeeded in saving all five farms and — for Greyson — more notably a trapped farm dog, Geyson thought they were incredible heroes and so began to learn all he could about them with the intent of one day being a hero such as them.
Eventually, after he graduated, he moved to Calgary where he became a firefighter; unfortunately his career was cut short by an accident that resulted in the loss of his right forearm.
His parents rallied their church and many other churches and gathered the money together to buy Greyson the most advanced prosthetic arm on the market; Greyson was grateful for the gift, but annoyed at the return of his parents, being as he'd rejected their Christianity and been working to cut off all ties from them.
As soon as possible after receiving his prosthetic arm, Greyson left Calgary and his parents behind and eventually made his way to Edmonton, staying with various girlfriends he met along the way; but now he's got no girlfriend, no house, and little money and he hasn't done any work since he did firefighting — which he can't do any more — because he doesn't find any other work brings the same sense of fulfillment as firefighting did . . . which leaves him in a rather difficult predicament.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Shadows Disinterred: Day 20

Word Total: 120,005

Year to Date: 930,079

Summary of Events:
Dallas and his fellow officer went through boxes down in the basement and found a chilling collection of kill photos. They then started digging up bodies, finding forty one — all thirty seven men plus Shirley's four sons — bodies in total. Dallas then went and broke the news to Mrs. Farquharson, who took it well, and then regaled his family with the tale of his investigation at their Thanksgiving gathering.

Excerpt of the Day:
"Once he'd gone around the small square buildings Dallas started his SUV, which seemed to roar to life with eagerness now that it was fully fuelled. Dallas looked at the house; the back door was closed now, the fence was gone, the garage door was closed.
All of it looked desolate, empty, and soggy. All that was left were the shadows. Dallas reversed around so he turned his hood to point where a row of granaries had once stood and then drove around, past all of the disturbed dirt, the gaping barn door, the empty chicken run — emptied by Deby's hand — past more stirred up dirt, places where granaries had once stood, and then out past where the gate had been down the driveway.
He passed the place where he'd leapt off of the driveway and rolled to safety when Deby had tried to run him down, he then headed out on a road he hadn't travelled in his SUV in some three months.
As he turned onto the road, Dallas looked at the farm. Most all of the leaves were gone now, the entire place looked forsaken, all the more forbidding and eerie, all the more like the kind of place where evil and shadows would dwell — and where they had too.
Walking up to the door, Dallas pressed the doorbell. A few moments later the door was opened by Anna, who flashed Dallas a savage look, but let him in without a word. Once he was inside she looked at him defensively.
"What do you want?" she demanded.
"I would like to speak to your mother," Dallas replied.
"Whatever she's hearing I can hear," Anna said.
Turning, Anna stalked into the living room. Dallas followed Anna and found Mrs. Farquharson sitting in the chair she'd sat in when he'd interviewed her all those months ago, although this time she was asleep.
"Mother," Anna said gently. "The police are here."
Mrs. Farquharson startled and looked up, an expression of recognition washed over her face. "Dallas," she said. "It's good to see you again."
"I only wish it were under better circumstances," Dallas said soberly.
"You've found things?" Mrs. Farquharson asked.
"Yes," Dallas replied. "And I regret to inform you, Mrs. Farquharson, that we located the remains of your son, Thomas Brett Farquharson, southeast of St. Brieux, Saskatchewan; we have determined the cause of death to be severe head trauma caused by beating. His death was a homicide which we are positive was committed by Shirley Muriel Pedin of St. Brieux, Saskatchewan on the sixteenth of September, nineteen eighty five." . . .
. . . Shadows had been lurking undetected, completely hidden, unseen, buried deep. They had hidden for a long time, deep underground, and yet it was his cousin, poor Madeline, who had found the key to unlocking the mystery, the shovel that — without digging — had lead to those shadows disinterred."

Essential information for the next novel will be posted on September 29.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Shadows Disinterred: Day 19

Word Count: 114,016

Summary of Events:
Dallas succeeded in cutting himself loose, found his gun, put his clothes on, and searched Deby's room — yielding little — before he succeeded in placing Shirley and Deby under arrest for aggravated assault of a police officer and attempted murder of a police officer. He then found his keys and cell phone, but his SUV died due to lack of fuel, so he called in backup and was attacked by Deby with a kitchen knife. After recovering in hospital he interviewed the man he'd chatted with at the diner in St. Brieux some two months before, and then worked to decode 58906191.

Excerpt of the Day:
""Yes!" Dallas exclaimed.
The female officer who'd been interviewing the diner's proprietor hurried out.
"What?" she asked.
"I figured it out! It's a code made up of the digits of each victim's death date!" Dallas exclaimed.
"What is?" she asked.
"The numbers on the boxes in the basement!" Dallas exclaimed. "We have got a treasure trove of evidence down there!"
"What should we do then?" she asked.
"You've got a vehicle here, right?" Dallas asked.
"Yes," she replied.
"We need to drive down to the farm now," Dallas said. "And we need to see how many boxes of evidence we have, that will absolutely nail down a body count."
Dallas got to his feet, shoving the napkin and pen into the breast pocket of the shirt he'd picked out of his bag – which Rowland had been so kind as to bring him — and strode out to the car. She hurried after him.
"Give me the keys," Dallas said, stopping at the driver's side door.
"I can drive," she said.
"I want to drive," Dallas said.
She tossed the keys over and they climbed inside. Dallas whipped them out of the parking lot and drove back to the Pedin farm. The gate was hanging ajar, and the willows' leaves were now yellowing and falling to the ground. The farm really seemed to have changed since Dallas had last been there.
Dallas drove them around to where his SUV was still sitting, dead. The Ford was still parked in the garage — whose door was still open. The back door of the house was also ajar, as was the gate leading into the house site.
"Man, it's like I only left here yesterday," Dallas said.
He parked the car and got out, heading for the house. Stepping in the back door, Dallas looked around. The floor was clean, there was no knife, but there were some blood spatters on the wall. His blood.
Dallas shuddered and turned on the light for the basement as his fellow officer arrived at the doorway.
"This is where I was attacked," Dallas said. "They were waiting in the kitchen for me."
She shuddered as Dallas started down the stairs. He opened the door and stepped inside the basement room again. Boxes everywhere. Now to figure out how many boxes there were.
"This is a treasure trove of evidence," she said in awe as she arrived downstairs. "But the numbers don't make any sense."
"Here," Dallas said. "I'll explain. The code is the death date of each of the victims, backwards. The first pair is the year, the second pair is the month, the third pair is the day, and the fourth pair is the century. Roman numerals tell how many boxes belong to each victim."
"Except that one, it's a doubled digit," she said, pointing at a box with the first pair of numbers marking the year before the killing began.
"Let's start there, that's Al," Dallas said."

Monday, September 21, 2015

Shadows Disinterred: Day 18

Word Count: 108,010

Summary of Events:
Dallas woke up in Deby's bed and was subjected to two different kinds of tortures: Deby's violent torture with lots of blood and pain, and Shirley's torture which mostly involved just beating him. Shirley and Deby continued to be disagreeable toward each other as well. Shirley fed Dallas lunch and confided in him — yet she was still cold-blooded, talking about taking his life with casual anticipation.

Excerpt of the Day:
"A kitchen knife was in Deby's hand. Dallas' eyes went wide. Deby smiled and brandished the weapon with confidence. Dallas whimpered, his heart racing with fear. No! This couldn't happen! He couldn't let it.
Her eyes glittering with violence, Deby reared back her hand. Dallas closed his eyes tightly, he didn't want to see the drop. Nothing happened. He opened his left eye, then his right. Deby dropped her hand and poked Dallas — but she didn't thrust the knife deep into his abdomen.
A bubbly sounding, demented giggle sounded from deep within before she brandished the weapon some more. Dallas watched her with terror until finally she turned and sauntered out of the room with the knife in her hand.
Dallas' entire body was trembling, he could only feel his body shaking and the pain she'd inflicted on him, along with the fearful memory of her embedding the fragment of the plate into his abdomen.
Then he started to notice a sharp pain in his lower back. He tried to shift around, but it hurt, and it felt like it was moving deeper. There was something in his back, Dallas managed to roll himself onto his left side.
Something fell out of his back and hit his hands. He found it and felt it. The X-acto knife? How had it ended up there? Dallas closed his eyes and thought. She'd put the X-acto knife on his abdomen, then she'd gone and gotten the knife — no, before she'd used the lighter she'd put it there.
And she'd never taken it back again. When he'd been jumping around in terror at the kitchen knife she'd been wielding the X-acto knife must've fallen off and moved around to get stuck in his back.
Dallas managed — although he felt clumsy — to loosen the blade slider and hide the blade completely away in the rest of the knife. He tightened it and then wondered where and how he should hide the knife, it would be a useful tool to him.
Deby entered the room and Dallas startled. Deby smiled before she covered Dallas up with the blanket and pushed him over to lay on his chest. She laughed a horrible and congested sounding laugh again before turning around and leaving the room.
She hadn't seen it, nor had she noticed it was missing from her tray. Dallas was safe; relief flooded through him at the thought. It was aright. Now he needed to come up with a plan. He had a knife, what was he going to do with it?
Was he going to try to stick one of them? It wouldn't work, besides, he was trying to arrest them, not kill them. Could he use it to cut the bonds on his wrists so he could undo his feet, find his gun, and escape?
That would work. Could he do it now? He was alone, after all. Dallas manoeuvred the blade around and tried sliding it without the blade to see if it would work. He smiled, it would work."

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Shadows Disinterred: Day 17

Word Count: 102,002

Summary of Events:
Dallas decided to try going into the barn again, but got panicked at the sight of Deby playing with a dead chicken before he got there. Later on Deby slid her finger over his neck like she was slitting his throat, and Dallas experienced another wretched nightmare. He overheard another conversation between Shirley and Deby in which Deby sounded eerily different as well. Finally he finished scything around the last building and got into an altercation with Deby . . .

Excerpt of the Day:
""You can't go anywhere," Deby said, a sinister smile curling her mouth.
"Oh I can't?" Dallas challenged. "Why can't I? I have feet."
"You wouldn't dare," Deby replied, her expression darkening.
"Absolutely I would dare," Dallas replied. "Just watch me."
Whipping around, Dallas stalked off along the machine shed, around the corner, and toward the gate.
"What do you think you're doing!?" Deby demanded loudly.
"Leaving," Dallas replied casually.
He climbed over the gate and started walking down the driveway. He walked on, a wave of confidence building in him as he made his way closer to the road; hopefully a vehicle would come by soon and he could hitch a ride — that would help things.
As he walked he heard the clanging of chain metal on other metal and other banging noises. He was about halfway down the driveway when he heard the rev of an engine. He kept walking.
The engine sound continued, and it sounded like driving, Dallas checked over his shoulder and saw the Ford. It was advancing toward him. Dallas kept walking, but kept to the side.
Uneasiness welled up in him as the engine sound increased, finally Dallas turned and looked. The Ford was bearing down on him at a terrifying rate. He started to run until it was close. He leapt to the side and rolled through the stubble.
Getting up, Dallas ran back toward the yard. He needed a vehicle, he needed to get away, and he had just the vehicle in mind, the only vehicle Deby wouldn't dare face — at least hopefully long enough for him to get to that diner in St. Brieux and call in backup.
He heard the truck revving behind him and threw a glance over his shoulder, the Ford was coming back now. Dallas powered over to the fence and vaulted it into the house site. His feet pounded the ground as he went around behind the house and hurried in the back door.
Shirley met him at the back door with a cup of coffee in her hands. "Just in time," she said. "Here, have some coffee."
"No, thank you," Dallas replied. "I don't drink coffee."
"Come, have coffee," Shirley said, holding it out to him. Had she suddenly lost a portion of her memory or something?
"No, I don't drink coffee, I'll just have water," Dallas said insistently.
"Drink it," Shirley said, her expression changing from kindly to cruel.
"No," Dallas insisted.
A hand seized the back of his neck, the next thing Dallas knew the hot, bitter brew was searing its way down his throat. Dallas tried to fight it, but it all went down before he could do anything about it.
He dropped to his hands and knees, tears of pain in his eyes, gasping, his throat raw from the heat of the drink. Another cup was put to his lips right away. Water. Dallas drank thirstily as a fog descended over him, darkness closed around him, then black."

Friday, September 18, 2015

Shadows Disinterred: Day 16

Word Count: 96,030

Summary of Events:
Dallas suffered another painful nightmare and tried to escape. He then brazenly tried to break into the barn twice, but both times he ended up getting stopped. Dallas then refused to eat his supper — positive it was drugged — and then went to the barn to try and serve it to the cat Deby claimed they had in the barn, Deby chased him down and smashed the plateful of food onto his face . . .

Excerpt of the Day:
"He felt the plate slide off of his face that hit the ground, shattering. Some food was hanging off the precipice of his throat. He went to cough it up, but Deby's hand covered his mouth firmly.
"Swallow," Deby commanded.
Dallas tried to cough it up with his mouth closed, but it wasn't as effective. He thrust his head forward, trying to roll the food up to behind his teeth. He couldn't swallow it, he wasn't going to. He didn't know how high-powered that stuff was, and he didn't want to risk that what was in his mouth was tainted.
"Swallow!" Deby said sharply, snapping Dallas' head back and throwing the food down his throat without it being chewed. Dallas gagged and tried to break free of Deby's hand to cough it out of his throat.
Finally he wrenched her hand off of his face and coughed the food out. Reaching up, Dallas swiped residual food off of his face and out of the way of his eyes. He opened his eyes and looked at the shattered plate at his feet, food sprayed all around, then up, Deby was staring at him ferociously; incensed.
Straightening, Dallas set his shoulders and looked at her defiantly. He was pretty sure he looked ridiculous with food remains swiped across his face, but he didn't really care much at all. He'd won.
"I won't go down without a fight," Dallas said firmly. "And you're going to have to fight bloody hard to take me down. I told you my physical condition, and it's far above yours, not to mention it's far above what you could have ever achieved if you'd taken the time."
Deby crossed her arms and glared at at Dallas. "You're speaking fighting words."
"I know, "Dallas replied. "And I'm not a man who's afraid of a fight, so why shouldn't I speak them?"
"Because you're not going to win," Deby replied.
Dallas raised his eyebrows at her, turned to the milk house, and seized the doorknob; he turned it with his full force. He felt the door opening as something stabbed into his abdomen, deep. It twisted. Dallas cried out and reached for it.
He grabbed Deby's hand and pulled it away. Looking down, Dallas saw a large fragment of the broken plate jutting out of his abdomen. Dallas felt the blood drain from his face, he felt faint.
Shakily he took hold of the plate's edge to pull it out, but then he remembered that wouldn't be safe. He needed a doctor or a hospital; something, quick. He sagged against the wall of the milk house, waves of cold uneasiness washing over him and sapping the strength from his muscles.
Dallas couldn't tear his eyes off the sight of the white glass — or porcelain, or plastic, or whatever it was — jutting out from him, the blood staining his blue shirt a brownish-purple colour."

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Shadows Disinterred: Day 15

Word Count: 90,022

Summary of Events:
Dallas overheard some more discussions between Shirley and Deby and also began to experience some viciously painful nightmares. Dallas was thwarted in several attempts to get into the barn to dig for bodies too, but made it into the basement again — not long enough to see anything before he was knocked out and dragged upstairs to be questioned, though. He also found that the pain from his nightmares was continuing into day to day life, puzzling him.

Excerpt of the Day:
""What were you doing in the basement?" Deby demanded.
The basement? The basement! Right. "I couldn't find either one of you, and there was no note," Dallas replied. "I saw a light downstairs, so I decided to see if one of you was down there."
"The light was on?" Deby asked in surprise.
"Yes, the light was on," Dallas lied.
"And you thought you would be allowed to go down there and look for us?" Deby asked.
"Well, I haven't been here without at least one of you here before, and so I wanted to find out whether I was alone or not," Dallas replied. "I was thinking because there was no note there might've been an emergency or something."
"And you thought you were going to find us in the cardboard boxes," Deby asked flatly.
"Well, all of the sudden the light went out," Dallas replied. "I was trying to find the wall, and I found the boxes. And then you hit me."
"I hit you?" Deby asked.
"Either you or Shirley, unless there are ghosts around here," Dallas replied.
Deby's face went pale again.
"There are no ghosts around here!" Shirley roared.
Dallas lifted his head and saw Shirley sitting in the chair; like Deby her face was pale, and she was glaring at him with her blue eyes vicious and her whole body trembling. Neither one of them seemed to like the idea of ghosts.
"Whatever you say," Dallas said.
Slowly he sat himself up. The throbbing in his skull kicked up a notch, but it wasn't too bad. He carefully shifted himself around so his back was to the back of the couch and he leaned back, closing his eyes, his entire body seemed to hurt worse, and he could feel where his handgun rested against his back like it was embedded into his back.
"I also have another question," Deby said, sitting astride Dallas' knees — which hurt.
She took a hold of Dallas' shirt and lifted it up. Dallas sucked in his sore abdomen despite the fact that he was sure Shirley and Deby would probably know full well about the bruises.
"What is this?" Deby asked, slipping a finger behind his holster belt, clearly visible above the waistband of his jeans, and running it slowly across.
"A money belt," Dallas lied.
"It doesn't look much like a money belt," Deby said.
"It's a new style they've come out with, I like it," Dallas replied.
Deby nodded. "Why do you use a money belt?"
"Because I was mugged and had my wallet stolen once," Dallas replied. "I don't really want to risk it happening again."
"I don't think you'd have to worry about being mugged and robbed around here," Deby said, getting up — much to Dallas' relief.
"Well, I don't exactly keep a spare wallet handy for when I'm in safe areas," Dallas replied. "What's the point?"
Deby looked toward the fireplace, then nodded and headed off for the kitchen. Dallas saw Shirley move out the corner of his eye; he turned to look at her as she shakily made her way toward him."

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Shadows Disinterred: Day 14

Word Count: 84,028

Summary of Events:
Dallas woke up with sore shoulders and legs whose pain he couldn't explain.  He continued scything — which was taking a long time due to the scythe's dullness — and ended up overhearing a heated argument between Shirley and Deby that seemed to connect the spade his cousin had given him to the Pedins. He also began to suspect he was being drugged. Later, he was scything around the barn and noticed something curious through its windows, after being startled by Deby and talking about why the concrete floor had been removed from the barn Deby took the scythe to sharpen it and Dallas leapt at the chance to look inside the barn.

Excerpt of the Day:
"Deby took a swing. She looked at the blade with curiosity. Dallas leaned against the fence and watched as she took several more swings, but seemed to be getting less grass than Dallas had been.
"Maybe that is the left-handed scythe," Dallas said wryly.
Deby flashed a glare at him and raised the blade up closer to her face. Dallas watched as she ran a finger down its length and came away bloodless. "This thing is dull as a steel rod!" she exclaimed.
She stalked off along the barn with the scythe in hand. Dallas remained leaning against the fence and watched her go away. As soon as she'd rounded the corner Dallas hurried the other way around behind the barn and found fenceposts attached to the barn's wall with boards angling toward a gate opening. It was a remnant from when the barn had been used for the cattle, although their pasture was long gone.
Dallas climbed over the fence and went to the door. Locked. Doggone it. Dallas looked up at the hayloft door. Could he get up there where the door gaped open? Maybe, but the question then had to be asked: how was he going to get out undiscovered?
Climbing back onto the fence, Dallas reached up his foot and put it on top of the lower doors. He got his hand into the hayloft. Hanging on tightly, Dallas lifted himself up onto the door entirely.
Desperately Dallas felt for a floorboard edge and found a knothole. Latching onto it, Dallas carefully climbed up the metal and into the loft. It was swept clean and empty. There was absolutely nothing in it. It looked like it'd make a pretty good bar with a huge dance floor.
Dallas shook his head, where had that idea come from? Carefully and quietly he hurried across the floor and down the steep loft stairs off to the front side by where the milk shed would be.
The last step was long — not surprising being as the concrete floor had been taken out — Dallas turned and looked at the barn floor. The rectangles were easier to make out without filthy windows in the way.
Crouching down, Dallas went over to the nearest one. There was no marker, but the dirt was soft in the centre, being packed down hard everywhere else. How had they gotten the rectangles so straight? How had they even dug into this hard pack? This had been under concrete and at least twenty thousand-pound cows' weight for years, this couldn't be easy to dig.
Regardless, they'd dug into it. Dallas took up a fistful of dirt from inside the rectangle and let it fall out of his hand. It was soft, pliable, and somewhere as few as twelve inches below it was a body, Dallas was convinced. He needed time to find proof, though."

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Shadows Disinterred: Day 13

Word Count: 78,004

Summary of Events:
Dallas finished combining the field and thought about what he wanted to do next: search for a grave so he could arrest the Pedins. He was woken in the night by someone searching in his room; after an encounter that shouldn't have happened Dallas fled the room, and left the Pedins to search for him while he got a few moments to search the house — which yielded results, but unfortunately not enough to give him the right to arrest them. The next morning he overheard a conversation between Shirley and Deby that gave him some clues, but nothing solid enough yet.

Excerpt of the Day:
"He didn't want to walk down the stairs in the dark, but he had no other option, so he went down, focused on the light at the bottom, his ears alert for sounds of the truck, and sounds of approaching people.
Taking hold of the knob, Dallas slowly turned it, terrified someone or something terrifying was going to jump out at him Opening the door enough that he could put his eye to the gap and see something, Dallas looked.
Boxes. There were lots of boxes. Many of them looked old, but some of them looked newer too. Cardboard banker's boxes most of them, although Dallas saw other boxes too, mostly boxes of things for maintaining farm machines.
Slowly Dallas opened the door a little more. There were no banshee screams, no bats, no eerie or ominous ghostly noises, no organs. Just boxes. Dallas slowly stepped into the room and looked around. Just boxes. He could feel his confidence building, but still nervousness chilled him and kept him from getting brazen.
Dallas' senses were on high alert as he looked at each of the boxes. They were labelled clearly in large, bold numbers. Not one of them had a name. They all had numbers, and the numbers didn't make sense to Dallas.
There were no years, no days, it wasn't written out day, month, year numerically; it was just number codes, like serial numbers on every bit and piece of technology, or on vehicles. There had to be an answer to the code, but Dallas didn't have the faintest idea what it would be.
Some of them had the same number, but then had Roman numerals added onto the end, like 58906191, which had I through VII added onto the end. The numbers didn't even go in sequential order either.
Dallas looked around for some kind of pattern; then he noticed that a lot of the boxes' number sequences ended with 91, and the ones that didn't ended with 02. Why those numbers? Where was 03 through 90? 01? 92 to 100?
That had to be a key. The second last pair of numbers Dallas noticed had a wide range, from 01 to 91; the pair before that was almost always 80 or 90, although there were a couple of 01s.
The first two digits ranged from 01 to 99. Dallas was convinced there was some kind of key in the numbers, but how in the world was he going to find it out? Dallas checked the walls, but he found no cheat sheet anywhere — probably unnecessary anyways, they probably had the number system memorized and completely understood it.
Dallas wondered if he should open one of the boxes and see if he could find any information that way that would give him an understanding regarding the box numbers, but then he heard voices."

Monday, September 14, 2015

Shadows Disinterred: Day 12

Word Count: 72,021

Summary of Events:
Dallas was put to work trimming the dead wood out of the willow trees with Debbie before Shirley asked him to cut a test strip for her. The wheat was ready to harvest, so the next day they began harvesting and Dallas spent the quiet time in the combine thinking about what he should do and where he should look. He also found out that Debbie was actually spelled Deby.

Excerpt of the Day:
"Dallas shook his head and started the combine, which roared to life loudly in the metallic confines of the machine shed. Shifting it into gear, Dallas drove the big red machine out of the shed and carefully turned it in a wide arc around to head past the building it'd been in to the north edge of the main yard and the space between the granaries where a gate opened into the field.
Being as the crop was growing right alongside the gate on the other side, Dallas stopped a bit short of the gate so Shirley would have the space to open it. He then let the combine idle.
Slowly Shirley made her way down and went toward the gate, then she unlocked the padlock and opened the gates. She stood back out of the way as Dallas turned on the cutter so that it spun in front of him and started forward, lowering it to the ground level as he got a bit closer.
Carefully Dallas manoeuvred the combine around the corner and drove it along the fence all the way to the corner by the barn where he stopped it, completely shutting it off. He wasn't going to risk anything.
Dallas even put the emergency brake in place to make sure that the vehicle didn't go anywhere. He then got out of the seat and climbed up the stairs and other footholds that led to the hopper.
Not much was in the combine, but it was all golden coloured, no green. Dallas reached in, hanging on tightly, and scooped the cup full. As he came down he heard a metallic click before the combine moved slightly.
Alarmed, Dallas scrambled into the cab and pressed the brake, to no avail, the emergency brake was still in place. Dallas removed it and hit the brake again. The combine stopped with a bit of a jerk.
So that was how she'd done it. She'd rigged the emergency brake, and somehow it overrode the foot brake too. Dallas sat in the seat, trembling, his foot pressed on the brake like he was trying to embed it into the floor.
The grain sample was still safe in his hand. He set it between his legs and then started the combine and reversed it to see the damage. There was little, if any; thankfully the combine hadn't moved far.
Dallas then continued reversing, keeping himself as straight as possible based on the fence, all the way back to the gate, where he passed an astonished Shirley as he reversed around into the driveway between the granaries and the back of the square machine shed — which was completely surrounded by the driveway.
Shirley closed the gates and locked them while Dallas got down out of the combine, remembering Shirley's words to Debbie that the yard site was flat. He gave Shirley the grain sample when they met."

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Shadows Disinterred: Day 11

Word Count: 66,017

Summary of Events:
Dallas made his final preparations before heading for St. Brieux; he went to the local diner for lunch and ended up learning from a patron some interesting information on the women, whose surname he also found out was Pedin. Finally he got to the Pedin house and met both of the women for the first time; they had coffee together — a rather awkwardly quiet experience — before Dallas went out to have a look at the combine, which Dallas discovered Debbie was terrified of.

Excerpt of the Day:
"Next came the large, grand living room in which a couch, a chair, and a loveseat in orange and brown floral sat, all facing the gargantuan, aged TV — probably the newest thing in the house, looking only about from the nineties — on the chair sat another diminutive woman who had grey hair bundled back into a bun so small it didn't even jut out from her head. She had an afghan of crocheted granny squares in every solid colour imaginable on her lap and her head was bowed in slumber.
Dallas noticed a grandfather clock and a small round mirror with long brassy spikes jutting out of its perimeter on the walls, along with a couple of bookshelves that had a couple of dated knickknacks between the books — many of which also looked dated.
"Sit down," Debbie said, and Dallas did so, sitting at the end of the couch furthest from Mrs. Pedin. He looked down at the seventies coffee table adorned with a table runner that looked like it was made from upholstery fabric more fitting of an eighties palette, a TV remote, a newspaper, and a tin of salted mixed nuts.
Debbie roused her mother who startled and then looked up and fixed the gaze of her dark blue eyes sharply on Dallas. She looked him over critical, her gaze causing Dallas to feel uncomfortable; she looked as much a calculating killer as her daughter did.
"Welcome to my farm Devon," Mrs. Pedin said, her eyes locked on his and her voice sounding surprisingly strong for her frail, thin appearance. "I'm pleased to meet you, my name is Shirley."
Dallas shifted in his seat and nodded barely. "Pleased to meet you as well, ma'am."
Shirley smiled a cunning smile and folded her hands on her lap so that her left one was on top. No rings. If it would've truly been an accidental death Dallas had a feeling she might've kept the rings on, Dallas ha a chilled feeling she'd orchestrated her husband's accidental death as well as murdered others.
The air was stuffy and smelled old fashioned, it had a quality of closeness that made Dallas feel chilled despite the summer heat beating on the house and taking the temperatures into the thirties.
"Now, before you get settled in, we should discuss your duties," Shirley continued.
Dallas nodded, glancing over at Debbie, who'd sat down on the opposite end of the couch beside the end table with the eighties lamp sitting on it.
"Your most important duty is the operation of the combine when we begin our harvest," Shirley said. "Aside from that you are to provide general aid to Debbie in bringing in the harvest, keeping the yard tidy, and whatever other projects she would have for you."
Dallas nodded.
"Should we ever see you sitting around doing nothing there shall be severe consequences," Shirley added, looking at Dallas seriously, yet with a ghost smile on her face and a glimmer of sinister mischief in her eye."

Pedin: pedahn

Friday, September 11, 2015

Shadows Disinterred: Day 10

Word Count: 60,010

Summary of Events:
After spending his weekend with a local waitress and attending a niece's birthday party at which he met three of his half siblings for the first time, Dallas called the number from the advertisement on Monday and spoke to Debbie, who interviewed him under the alias of Devon Klein for the job. Monday evening Dallas was called back and told by Debbie he had the job. On Tuesday Dallas and two fellow officers of the detachment along with investigating officers from all of the other detachments that had jurisdiction over some of the cases discussed their plan of action.

Excerpt of the Day:
""Any instructions for us while we wait?" an officer Dallas was pretty sure was Stephen Lofgren asked.
"Read over your cases," Dallas replied. "I'll get the closed cases returned back to their respective detachments once Ireland makes copies of them for reference here being as we're kind of in charge overall. If you can, talk with the victims' families — although I'll warn Leipzig and Wakaw that the Yoden and Kruse families were not very cooperative when I contacted them — try and get descriptions of what things the victims took with them if you can; I would even encourage you to memorize the cases if you can, that way we won't have to cart files around, not to mention, I don't want any details missed. Capital punishment is unfortunately no longer an option, so we want all the evidence we can to land these women in prison for the rest of their lives without any chance of parole, we want them convicted for all of the victims, without a doubt."
"And once we get the call to go up to St. Brieux?" another officer asked.
Dallas looked contemplatively at his screen saver. "We'll have to see how soon after their arrest investigation will begin," he replied. "Being as these are serial killers, as much as I'm optimistic that I'm going to get out unscathed, I'm not going to let myself guarantee that, this is dangerous. So, being as I'm kind of in charge because I found the breakthrough evidence, if I get injured, I wouldn't mind if you'd wait until I get out of the hospital so I can at least see everything, I've spent a couple of months on this already, and I don't want to miss seeing if this all connects, and any new discoveries we might come upon."
Blake and Angela both looked at Dallas, serious and focused.
"I think once the arrests are made and we're all ready we could meet in St. Brieux for a debriefing and then go out to the farm and start looking from there," Dallas continued. "I will let the detachment with jurisdiction organize a lot more of those efforts because they'll be holding all of this evidence, not to mention the trial's probably going to take place in the area."
Dallas went silent again. He felt uncomfortable about broaching the last possibility, but he felt it had to be broached, it was a legitimate risk.
"Alright then, so we'll all wait for the alert," one of the officers said.
"If it happens that no one hears anything from me for more than two months, you have the location, move in and arrest them," Dallas said. "It is a real risk, as much as I hope it doesn't come to pass. Also, if I succeed in escaping, but succumb, move in, arrest them, and follow the instructions of the presiding detachment.""

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Shadows Disinterred: Day 9

Word Count: 54,010

Summary of Events:
Dallas officially solidified with Lauren that they were breaking up — which caused her to make a scene and threaten him with her nightstick — then he got invited to his niece's birthday party and called his grandma for present advice; during that call he was called back by the classified syndicate with results on their investigation. Following the call Dallas discussed plans as a result of the call with one of his best friends and fellow officers. Dallas then went on a date with another fellow officer just to get her to leave him alone, being as he didn't really like her.

Excerpt of the Day:
""Are you up to much lately?" his grandma asked.
"Well, I've been waiting for a phone call for about four days already," Dallas replied.
"Ah," his grandma said. "Should I let you go?"
"I don't know," Dallas replied.
"You probably can't talk about your case with me anyways," his grandma said.
"No," Dallas replied.
"Will you be able to come out to our place, not this Sunday, but the Sunday after for our July gathering?" his grandma asked.
"I probably could," Dallas replied. "I'm running low on leftovers again anyways."
His grandma laughed. "Yes we could probably set you up with those."
Dallas' desk phone rang. "I think I've got my call Grandma, I need to go."
"Of course," his grandma said. "Take care of yourself."
"I will," Dallas replied before quickly ending the call and picking up the desk phone to silence it. "Hello?"
"Hello, is this Dallas Klybanowsky of the RCMP?" a woman asked.
"It is, yes," Dallas replied.
The woman identified herself as being from the classified syndicate. "You requested we investigate an advertisement placed with our syndicate looking for farm labour in Saskatchewan?"
"Yes," Dallas replied eagerly.
"We located the–"
"I don't care how you found it," Dallas interrupted. "I just want to know what you found, I've been waiting for four days for this, and time is of the essence."
"Oh, sorry," the woman said. "Um, well, the advertisement was placed by a user known as D two thousand P using a computer that we determined to be a public use computer at the Prince Albert Public Library. I hope that information helps you."
"Thank you," Dallas said flatly, setting the phone back down.
These women were smarter than Dallas had thought, the username meant absolutely nothing — although it suggested corroboration because of the D and the fact that one of the women was known as Debbie — and there was no way that Dallas was going to be able to pinpoint exactly who'd used the Prince Albert Public Library's computer to place the ad.
Putting his face in his hands, Dallas sighed. It'd dead-ended. He had nothing, absolutely nothing. How was he going to get anywhere?
He still had the phone number. Dallas removed his face from his hands and brought up the image of the advertisement. There was still the ability to investigate the phone number, and even if the number was unlisted, Sasktel knew who it belonged to and they would probably be willing — if they weren't bound by law — to reveal who the number belonged to, especially if he told them lives depended on it.
But Dallas could also call the number himself, talk to the killers himself. Maybe he could even apply for the job and then be the mole and get solid evidence to arrest them on without them even knowing he was a cop."

Wednesday, September 09, 2015

Shadows Disinterred: Day 8

Word Count: 48,026

Summary of Events:
Dallas had a nightmare about his work during the weekend and then talked with one of his fellow officers who'd broken up his and Hackett's argument the week before. At lunch Dallas found a hopeful lead for his case, but the people looking into it didn't get back to him as fast as he'd thought, so he played Free Cell, talked to his half sister and another fellow officer, and realized he'd been moved out of his mom's house for nearly ten years while he waited.

Excerpt of the Day:
"Taking up his tray, Dallas walked over to a secluded two-person booth in the quietest corner of the restaurant. Conveniently, it seemed, there was a copy of the weekly paper sitting on the table.
Dallas set up his lunch on the tray before opening the paper and skimming through its contents. There wasn't anything really worth reading, but Dallas flipped through it anyways as he slowly ate his lunch.
Getting to the classifieds, Dallas kept flipping slowly through, even though he wasn't looking for work, a bachelorette, toasters, firewood, cattle, grain, obituaries, wedding announcements, or anything else that was being hawked.
A couple pages in, an ad caught Dallas' eye. It wasn't like the small little snippets that were many of the ads, nor was it large, gaudy, and logo-plastered. It was somewhat larger than the other generic help wanted classifieds, with a black border and chunky black type.
Its message was simple, and yet familiar: Wanted: Farm Labourer. Dallas had no idea where he would've read the message before. He looked at the phone number: 306-275-4258, four, two, five, and eight.
Mrs. Farquharson had said five, two, four, eight. Two digits were different, but it was so close, and the message was much the same as what Mrs. Farquharson had told Dallas the message was on the ad Thomas had responded to.
Dallas went ramrod straight. He was absolutely thunderstruck. Mrs. Farquharson had said she remembered the numbers, but she didn't remember the order! Was this the order? Was this it?
Taking up his phone, Dallas checked his Notes app and memorized Mrs. Farquharson's number before dialling it and putting his phone to his ear, his heart racing with anticipation.
"Hello?" Mrs. Farquharson answered, sounding perplexed.
"Mrs. Farquharson, this is Dallas Klybanowsky," Dallas said.
"Ah, that's why you are familiar," Mrs. Farquharson said.
"Oh! Sorry, I'm using my personal phone," Dallas apologized.
"Ah," Mrs. Farquharson said. "What can I do for you?"
"Could you look in the classifieds section of the paper, on the third page, second column, two thirds of the way down?" Dallas asked.
He remained silent to give Mrs. Farquharson time to find the page.
"Is that the number Thomas called?" Dallas asked.
There was more silence. Dallas waited, his muscles tight, his free hand clenching the table so hard it hurt. His heart pounded in his ears, anticipation trembled in his breastbone, the silence was killing him.
"Yes," Mrs. Farquharson said quietly — Dallas just about didn't hear her.
Dallas stared at the ad; he couldn't believe it. He'd found their bait. He'd finally found it! "Thank you Mrs. Farquharson," he said breathlessly before ending the call."

Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Shadows Disinterred: Day 7

Word Count: 42,005

Summary of Events:
Dallas found a town in the area where all the victims had disappeared that had a French name and wondered if it was the place he was looking for, so he looked into it. He got called back by one of the victims' sisters on behalf of their parents who adamantly refused to give Dallas information because they were upset at the officer who'd investigated the case originally. Dallas looked into him and discovered that he was now working at the City of Swift Current's detachment, and so Dallas decided to go ask him about the matter and was greeted with incredible, disappointing unkindness. Dallas then met the newspaper receptionist for their date.

Excerpt of the Day:
""The only thing I agree with you on is that my mother is a –," Dallas growled. "But I am not coming in here and condemning you as a young person who has no regard for seniors, I'm just about thirty years old, not to mention I respect my elders, and I can give you the testimony of a woman I didn't know until about a week ago to prove it, alongside of my grandparents. I am coming in here and condemning you as an RCMP officer. I don't know what marks you passed with from the Academy, but I am renowned as one of their highest-marking and most honoured students, and I am appalled and reviled at the fact that one of my fellow officers does not take such pride in waring the RCMP badge as he ought to. We aren't just any old police force. We are the RCMP. We are known worldwide better than any other police force aside from probably only Scotland Yard. We are known for always getting our man; but we can't always get our man if we're turning people off, or not treating cases with the seriousness they need to be treated with. If someone says their loved one is behaving abnormally we should believe them, because we don't know their loved one like they do, we don't know what is normal and abnormal about their loved one without them telling us! Now we have reason to believe the most prolific pair of yet to be apprehended serial killers is on the loose and we may well have just lost out on vital information as to their location because of your incompetence!"
"Well how was I supposed to know it was serious!?" Hackett demanded.
"You weren't supposed to know," Dallas returned. "You were supposed to treat it with seriousness because it was a missing person, and do your utmost to find him and possibly have found out that it was more serious than it seemed to you initially. You could well have saved some twenty lives and counting if you would've investigated more competently! But now you've lost out on accolades, honours, and promotions you could've received because you went and – the case!"
Hackett's face went pale and he looked at Dallas with wide eyes. Dallas kept his grip firm on Hackett's shirt and his face serious. He'd played the right card finally. Hopefully Hackett would explain himself now.
As Dallas waited for Hackett to move, Hackett's face changed to a vicious determination from its appall. Hackett reached up and grabbed Dallas' ear again.
"Get me those case files kid, and I'll show you how it's done," Hackett growled.
"No," Dallas replied. "It's my case, the City of Swift Current has no jurisdiction over any fragment of the case; the Rural Municipality of Swift Current has jurisdiction due to one of the victims being from Dunelm, and due to fortuitous circumstance, we got to the case first.""

Monday, September 07, 2015

Shadows Disinterred: Day 6

Word Count: 36,004

Summary of Events:
Dallas continued to call family members of the victims looking for more information, but unfortunately he continued to get nothing more than corroboration. He went to the local paper to see if he could find the ad Thomas Farquharson had responded to, but he found too many similar ones to be sure — and also got a date with the receptionist for Friday night. Dallas was then called back by the father of the second victim and got another interesting tidbit for hypothesizing.

Excerpt of the Day:
"So what d'you wanna know?" Mr. Runole demanded.
"Well, I was wondering if Paul ever showed you the advertisement he responded to which ultimately led to his disappearance," Dallas replied.
"Demise, you mean," Mr. Runole said.
"It has yet to be solidly confirmed," Dallas replied. "So as it stands it's a disappearance."
"Technicalities," Mr. Runole muttered. "No, he didn't show it to me, why would he show it to me?"
"I don't know," Dallas replied. "I just wanted to be sure."
"What else d'you wanna know?" Mr. Runole asked.
"Did he tell you anything about the person he was going to work for?" Dallas asked.
"Said it was a lady who'd just lost her husband and wanted to keep the farm going to provide for her kids' education."
Dallas furrowed his brow: kids? Not just a daughter?
"Bein's we were doin' alright with the farm I said he could go at least for helpin' with the harvest, but I wanted him back for seedin' in the spring," Mr. Runole said.
"The woman said she had more than one child?" Dallas asked.
"She must've, 'cause that's what Paul told me," Mr. Runole replied. "I didn't talk to the woman. That important?"
"Somewhat," Dallas replied. "Did Paul tell you exactly where he was going to?"
"No," Mr. Runole replied. "He said it was somewhere between Daylesford and Melfort west of Silver Park. Not far from some small town over there."
Dallas nodded, making note of Silver Park; that was a town that hadn't been mentioned before.
"He didn't say the name of the town?" Dallas asked.
"No, he didn't know how to pronounce it," Mr. Runole replied. "Somethin' French or somethin' like that."
Dallas nodded.
"Don't know why there's French places in Saskatchewan, I thought all the French people was in Quebec," Mr. Runole muttered. "And they ought t'stay there too."
"Thank you for your cooperation and your information Mr. Runole," Dallas said.
"Why're you interested in findin' things out 'bout Paul's disappearin'?" Mr. Runole asked.
"We've found some evidence that links him to several other men who've gone missing over the years in Saskatchewan — cases we'd never dreamed would've been related — and we're trying to track down where they all went so we can find them," Dallas replied.
"And bring their killers to justice," Mr. Runole said.
"Yes," Dallas replied after a pause. If Mr. Runole believed his son was dead there was no sense beating around the bush.
"Glad to hear you've finally found somethin'," Mr. Runole said.
Dallas nodded and then brought the conversation to a close. Kids. More than one child. That interested Dallas. It made him wonder. There was the theory that the first woman killed her husband; was there the possibility that she'd killed more in her family too?"

Saturday, September 05, 2015

Shadows Disinterred: Day 5

Word Count: 30,013

Summary of Events:
Dallas went to lunch at Mrs. Farquharson's and succeeded in getting a description of the advertisement from her, but nothing else. Dallas got a call from Stephen reporting back on what Nathan's family and friends had said about having seen the ad and they got into hypothesizing. Dallas then started calling other families whose cases were closed, but he wasn't really learning anything.

Excerpt of the Day:
""Thomas' mother said the woman mentioned having a daughter as well — and Thomas was hopeful that he might marry the daughter," Dallas added. "Ivin's mother said that apparently the woman's name was Debbie, and her husband had recently died, but she wanted the farm to keep going."
"Hm," Stephen said. "Maybe neither one of them were lying."
"What?" Dallas asked.
"I was just thinking, if the woman thirty years ago had a daughter, say her daughter was about twenty at the time — probably why she was mentioned — and then twenty years later she's been married and her husband died too, and so had her mother," Stephen replied.
"You mean like . . . inherited serial killing?" Dallas asked. "The mother did it and then the daughter carried it on after her?"
"It's an idea, anyways," Stephen said. "I mean, I don't know that I've ever heard of a serial killer who's amassed nearly forty kills without being caught."
"I guess it could work," Dallas said. "But how did the husbands not catch on? And what kind of story did they have during the twenty years in the middle?"
"True," Stephen said. "But, I wouldn't discount the idea of there being a pair of them, because, say the killer's twenty when she starts, forty years later she's sixty, that'd be kind of old to be subduing strong young men and murdering them."
"The lab tech who looked into the shovel for me and myself were hypothesizing that she drugged them," Dallas said. "And when we found out there was a woman involved that really solidified the idea."
"Why would she drug them? Then she doesn't have the pleasure of seeing all the life go out of them," Stephen said. "And that's part of the thrill of killing for serial killers."
"We were thinking she drugs them so that she can restrain them so they can't run, and then tortures and/or kills them," Dallas replied.
"That would work," Stephen agreed.
"And we're thinking the shovel we have as evidence was used to knock them out if they started to revive before she was ready," Dallas said. "The shovel shows signs of being used as a beating device."
"But still, I mean, farm boys I'd say probably weigh on average a good two hundred pounds — whether it's fat or muscle — do you seriously think a sixty year old granny's going to be able to haul a two hundred pound dead weight around without help?" Stephen asked.
"True," Dallas agreed. "But then we've got to hope that Debbie — as I'd assume that would be the daughter being as no name was given for the earlier call — never had a daughter, because if she did then goodness knows they're probably breeding up another sadist who we won't be able to nab because  she's yet to kill anyone and we'll just about be right back where we started.""

Friday, September 04, 2015

Shadows Disinterred: Day 4

Word Count: 24,043

Summary of Events:
Dallas got the files for his final few victims, giving him thirty seven victims and confirming that this serial killer was still active. Dallas contacted the officer investigating the most recent case to try and get some more information, and then ended up learning that they were dealing with a female serial killer according to one of the victims' mothers, although he still had no location or surname for their killer, so Dallas contacted the most local victim's mother and got invited over for lunch to talk.

Excerpt of the Day:
""Thank you," Dallas said. "Getting the location would be an instrumental piece of the puzzle."
"Yes," Marion said. "Then we could find Shawn and reunite him with his family."
"No," Dallas said.
"No?" Marion asked. "What do you mean?"
"I told you earlier, I think this is the work of a serial killer," Dallas replied. "Shawn, I am positive, is dead — and maybe even long dead by now — all we will provide his family with is his body so that it can be properly buried."
"Are you sure he'd be dead?" Marion asked. "Many serial killers engage in torturing their victim before killing them."
"Yes, but still, if the killer seeks a new victim every July, then there must be a cooling period between victims," Dallas replied. "The majority of serial killers have a time where they have no victim, a period in which they let their kill and the pleasure of it sink in before they go seeking the next victim to kill. It's been ten months since Shawn disappeared; I am sure he's been dead for at least two months, possibly as long as eight months, maybe even nine."
Marion was silent. Dallas had a feeling that she was dealing with a little bit of deflating defeat at the moment, realizing that she hadn't succeeded in finding Shawn before he'd been slaughtered.
But then again, if he'd been killed as soon as a month after he left, he wasn't even reported missing until September, the case could well have been futile before it even began, they hadn't realized they were dealing with a killer.
"I'll contact the family and ask them about the location," Marion finally said, her voice quiet. "And I'll let you know what I get. Goodbye."
"Goodbye," Dallas replied, although the line went dead before he'd even finished speaking. Dallas set the handset down to end the call.
Sighing, Dallas looked at Shawn's file. A picture had been included in it, and it showed a young man who looked young, fading signs of acne on his face, but yet still rather mature and dignified — especially so likely because it was his grad photo — a young man with his whole life ahead of him.
Dallas felt a twinge of disappointment himself too, but he could've done even less than Marion, he hadn't gotten the shovel until — likely — after Shawn had been killed, no matter what.
It didn't seem like there were any survivors, any escapees of this cunning, deceptive killer. Whoever they were, they were effective in trapping their victims and ensuring that absolutely no escape took place.
And Shawn wasn't the youngest either. There'd been John and Herman, both fifteen year olds, three years younger than Shawn, and both of them had been taken by this ruthless killer. It was almost enough to make Dallas cry."

Thursday, September 03, 2015

Shadows Disinterred: Day 3

Word Count: 18,035

Summary of Events:
Dallas and Rod the lab tech hypothesized that the shovel was used in part of the potential torture of the victims. Dallas then discussed his case with one of his closely acquainted colleagues who was interested by the fact that there is a town called Sleepy Hollow in Saskatchewan. A young officer named Amy — who was highly enamoured with Dallas — went to lunch with him and he talked about the case with her. Dallas then ended up being called by the investigating officer of one of the cases Dallas had gotten a file for, being as the case was still open and the officer was wondering what Dallas had learned.

Excerpt of the Day:
""The fact that I don't know where the men disappeared to, and the fact that I've yet to find an investigating officer ask the people they're interviewing for a description of the advertisement," Dallas replied. "If I had one, or both, of those things I could move in and make an arrest already. But no one seems to know or remember the exact place the missing men went, and I have no description or physical copy of the advertisement."
"Have you called up any of the families or anything?" Amy asked.
"Not yet, I'm hoping to find what I'm looking for in one of the files; I don't necessarily want to bother the families," Dallas replied. "I don't want to get their hopes up that their loved one might be found alive or something."
"Why not?" Amy asked.
"Because I don't think that'll be the case," Dallas replied, raising his arms off the table when the waitress arrived with their food. He nodded thanks for the food before the waitress left.
"What would lead you to believe that?" Amy asked once the waitress had gone back behind the lunch counter.
"Well, none of them have been seen or heard from again," Dallas replied. "Not to mention what got me onto the case was bloodstained with the blood of eight of them. If there's bloodshed going on I'm pretty sure they're not around anymore."
"Then why don't you notify the families of as much?" Amy asked.
"Because I don't have any physical evidence to confirm it," Dallas replied. "And besides, I mean, some of these men disappeared before I was even born, I'm sure their families have resigned themselves to accepting that their loved one is likely dead. Us telling them what they're pretty sure is the case isn't going to mean anything to them unless we can present them with a body, and until we can, there's no point in bothering them."
"I guess that's true," Amy said.
Dallas nodded as he chewed a bite of his sandwich.
"So you need the location to find the bodies," Amy said. "But why do you need the ad?"
"Well, if I can't find the location, if I find the ad, it might give me the location, or I can find out who placed it and find the location from there and then get a warrant, hunt through everything, and find the bodies," Dallas replied.
"You really know what you're doing," Amy said, admiration in her voice and gaze.
"If I didn't then why are the taxpayers wasting their money paying me?" Dallas asked.
Amy was silent. Dallas ate some of the fries off of his plate, wishing he could get a lead on the location sooner versus later so he could get in there and close this off. He'd already been investigating the case for a month and yet he still had nothing other than a growing list of victims, and a shovel."

Wednesday, September 02, 2015

Shadows Disinterred: Day 2

Word Count: 12,017

Summary of Events:
Dallas was required to help his colleagues with the robbery case they were working on because the victims wouldn't cooperate. After a week and a half of helping them Dallas finally got some information for his case and spent the next two weeks looking into it before giving an update to Madeline about the shovel — and apologizing to her for being so irritable about taking it on.

Excerpt of the Day:
"Dallas stepped back to catch his balance and found it was Rod the lab tech who'd run into him. Rod looked up and startled before his expression turned quite pleased. Dallas noticed Rod had some papers in his hand that looked like they'd been folded and put into an envelope.
"Just the guy I was hoping to run into," Rod said. "Not that I meant to do so literally."
"At least nobody died or got injured," Dallas said.
"True, true," Rod said. "I've got the results on the blood samples, we've got some names for our DNA."
"Oh," Dallas said. "That's good."
"So I'll give you this, and I'll go back to the more technical things," Rod said. "I hope we find out more about what happened to these poor men."
Dallas nodded, glancing over the papers. He folded them back up and walked over to his office. Sitting down in his chair, he turned on his computer and looked over the papers; there was a lot of technical, scientific, medical jargon that was beyond him, but finally he found what he was looking for.
Eight names were listed, none of them were familiar to Dallas, but he knew the database would let him know if any of the names were mentioned anywhere in their detachment files, and if they weren't, he'd send out a notice to the other detachments.
Getting to the database, Dallas selected the search box and typed in the first name: Paul Runole. In moments the result came back negative, as it did with Robert Gerhart, Wallace Hallgren, Gary Samoil, Lyle Kruse, Franklin Mallen, and John Palmer.
Dallas typed in the last name and sighed, not expecting results; but to his surprise it searched longer, then the screen showed results. There was a file on Thomas Farquharson.
Pumping his fist, Dallas smiled, he had jurisdiction over this. He wrote down where the file was located and got up. Briskly he left his office and went to where all the files were stored, quickly locating the file among the unsolved missing persons cases.
The file was aged and its contents were yellowed, Dallas took the file back to his office and opened it. Thomas Farquharson had been a resident of Dunelm, less than fifteen minutes southwest of Swift Current, and in the Rural Municipality of Swift Current — which was the detachment Dallas was currently assigned to.
Eagerly Dallas read over the file. Thomas Farquharson had been twenty two years old when he was reported missing in nineteen eighty five. He'd been reported missing in December, having last been seen and heard from in July.
In July he'd applied for a job as a farmhand, having just graduated from university with an agricultural degree. There were no specifics given in the statement as to the place he'd actually gone to, but it was in the area of Wakaw, Saskatchewan."

Tuesday, September 01, 2015

Shadows Disinterred: Day 1

Word Count: 6,034

Summary of Events:
Dallas spent time with his dad's side of the family for their Easter gathering and was given something by his cousin that she wanted him to check out. Dallas arrived home Easter Monday and had a rather sour talk with his sister on the phone. The next day Dallas took what his cousin had given him to the lab and then was asked by a fellow officer to take statements for them while they investigated a robbery. Later that day Dallas went back to the lab and received results that left him reeling.

Excerpt of the Day:
"Dallas said noting and watched as Madeline finally got out her key and opened the trunk. Laying on the black carpet was a spade. Dallas felt it was all rather anticlimactic: a spade? It looked like the same kind of spade a person could find at any home improvement store, or even in anyone's toolshed.
"It's a spade," Dallas said flatly.
"Yes, but here," Madeline said, taking hold of the handle and the blade and lifting it out of the trunk. She put the handle under her arm and indicated some dark spots near where the blade and handle met. "These spots, they look like dried blood to me — they remind me of what some of our facecloths used to look like after Theodore, Peter, or Brandon had a bloody nose."
Dallas looked closely at the spots and nodded. He reached out and felt the spade handle between them; the varnish was worn off, thus any liquid that came into contact with the spade would soak into the wood fibres.
"It could very well be blood," Dallas said. "But seriously Madeline, goodness knows if this relic was in an antique shop, it was on somebody's farm — Grandpa's probably got a dozen of these things — and if this thing's old enough, I mean, people used to butcher chickens and cattle and goodness knows what other farm animals by themselves instead of sending it to a butcher, this could be random farm animal blood. I mean honestly, just because you have a cop for a cousin doesn't mean every little thing you encounter could be suspicious." . . .
. . . "There were thirty marks on the shovel that yielded information," Rod said.
Dallas nodded, not sure why Rod seemed to be dragging things out.
"The rest of them had insufficient staining to yield much, but they were likely blood as well," Rod continued. "And of the thirty marks that yielded information, they can be divided into eight groups of perfect matches. I've sent them off for further examination."
"So, like, five of them were all of one type of blood and three were another?" Dallas asked.
"Yes," Rod replied.
"Okay," Dallas said.
"And, like I said, I sent them off for further examination," Rod said.
"Why?" Dallas asked. "Don't you have the capability to find out whether they are cow blood or chicken blood or not? Or are you trying to specify if it's Hereford and Leghorn?"
"No," Rod replied, his face going so serious Dallas felt chilled, and almost like the bright lights of the lap should've dramatically dimmed.
"Well, then what?" Dallas asked, feeling nervous.
"I sent them off for further examination because all eight samples are human blood," Rod replied."