Chapter 36

October 8th, 2010

Bad Things Happening

I decided to drive to The Cabin, after eating breakfast and feeding & water Murphy, my one remaining condo cat, for at least a few hours, despite having to work Sundays in November, so I did. It was a short drive, and I disarmed the building, refilled Jenny's 3 bowls, and she was happy to see me. She slurped my face, and I rubbed her back and tummy down. I came home around 5:45pm to DVR "Hitman" from 6-8pm, and went to sleep early.

I arrived at The Cabin on Monday morning around 10:30m, disarmed the building, refilled Jenny's 3 bowls, an unloaded my gear. The M&MC Corp (Minerals & Mining Corp) Trailer was still parked near the mine in the creek, so I decided to drive my Silver 2002 Jeep Grand Cherokee "Laredo" down to have a look and a chat with the two guards. I drove the Jeep through the 3-acre meadow down to the creek, telephoned ahead that I was coming: no answer from either of their phones. I slipped my Kimber 1911 "Eclipse Target II" .45cal ACP out of its Galco Leather Fed Paddle Holster, chambered a round, grabbed the two other mags I carry also in a Galco Leather Paddle Holster, loaded the Remy 12ga — 7 in the tube and 1 in the chamber — with .00 buckshot, and stopped about 50yds from the trailer. I waited for signs of life or a callback. I head a cellphone ringing inside the trailer, and then got out of the Jeep. I quietly tried the front door, and it was locked from inside.

I took a stump of firewood and went around to the back of the trailer, to their bedrooms, and peered into the windows. There, on the two single beds, were both men, shot in their faces, with a shotgun, with not much but hamburger left for faces and bloodstains all over the sheets, walls and headboards. Holy shit! I jumped down and ran back to the Jeep and called Sheriff Bunce's Office. Within 7-8 minutes, four police cars, with lights flashing, entered my 1,000ft driveway and sped across the meadows to the trailer, where I was parked. Not knowing all the personnel, I laid my weapons down and laced my fingers behind my head. Sheriff Roy and Sgt Clay introduced me to all the new deputies and I shook hands, picked-up my weapons, showed them my CCW-PA Permit, and all was well between us. All wasn't well in the trailer, though.

They'd brought along a crime scene photographer, and two Corononer ambulances, with lights flashing, next pulled into the driveway, and crossed over the meadow to the trailer. Sheriff Bunce used a key supplied to him by M&MC Corp (Minerals & Mining Corp) to unlock the front and only door, and they went in, guns drawn. I went inside last. It was a mess; signs of a violent struggle and blood everywhere. Scales smashed, files, folders and papers strewn everywhere. The large safe was partially-torched with a welding tool, but was unopened. I was advised not to touch anything until police forensics was finished with footprints, handprints, blood samples, tire prints and body identification and removal. I was about ready to throw-up when I saw the bedroom and the condition of the two men's faces, so I excused myself and went back outside for some fresh air. I threw-up anyway. I hadn't seen that much carnage since my years in the Nam back in the 70s.

Sgt Clay Atler was the first to come outside to talk to me and take a statement. I told him the facts: that I'd closed the GC&N Complex around 9am, after sending everyone home around 8:30am due to the rainy weather, and I decided to visit The Cabin to check on Jenny, get her fed, and visit with the two guards to see what progress had been made. I showed him the tree stump I used to peer inside the trailer, and after seeing what I saw, called the Sheriff before doing anything else. He remarked that I had done everything according to procedure, but that he'd have to check my 12ga for firing. I'd cleaned it since its last usage a few weeks ago, after shooting the Groves on September 24th, and hadn't fired it since. He noted that fact after unloading and checking the weapon. It was all in his report. He said the FBI would soon be here, as they had an "interest" in the criminal element perps, not me. The gold was between me and the IRS.

Within minutes, an unmarked car drove up the drive, veered right and headed for the trailer. I instinctively pulled my .45, but Clay told me to re-holster it, as it was the FBI from Harrisburg. He recognized the car. I quickly did. Four agents with ID got out, and had a CSI Investigator with them, to go over the crime scene. One agent read Clay's report, made a copy in his car's laptop computer copy machine, and attached it to a much longer questionnaire I would have to verbally fill-out. We got started and finished within 40-45mins. By then, body bags were coming from the trailer into the waiting Coroner's ambulances, destined for a morgue autopsy.

Shit; all I wanted was a peaceful day in front of the fire with Jenny, some Cognac and a book to read. Now, all this terrible crap zapped that idea.

With all the bodies removed, foot printing, tire printing and fingerprinting done, I was allowed to come back inside the trailer and examine the strewn-about papers, regarding my gold mine. I wasn't allowed to touch them, as CSI was using tweezers to handle them for fingerprints. I identified the M&MC Corp (Minerals & Mining Corp) Contract, signed and notarized months ago, plus hundreds of daily reports of M & MC Corp (Minerals & Mining Corp)'s reported findings and weighings, up until yesterday. Then, the trail of reports ended. Of course, it was a cold, rainy day, and no workmen would have shown-up for work, and hence, no paperwork would have been filled-out. Not so, said the FBI Agent. Even on days on inclement weather activity, a day's activity log is required-by-law, to be kept, and filed. Two of the FBI Agents had put all the strewn documents in chronological order, in the proper folders, wearing latex gloves, so as not to leaves prints. The two murdered guards were printed, and I was also re-printed on-scene, for matches. The entire trail was dusted with black powder and looked like a 1920's relic with black mold everywhere.

M&MC Corp (Minerals & Mining Corp)'s Rep showed-up within 25mins, opened the safe and reported that there was a significant pile of pure 24kt nuggets in bags with my name on them, plus record of over a ton of gold ore heading to the Harrisburg smelting factory, to be separated from the rock. It's total was about 3½ tons, so far, and that the vein had all but "tapped-out". Obviously, he concluded that 1-2 men had tried to open the safe to get the remaining nuggets out, but couldn't, and when the two guards were unable to provide the combination, were shot in the face, point-blank, by a 12ga. No shells littered the trailer, so they either picked them up if they were pump, or use double barrel shotguns. I was starting to get very angry: two good men with families, had lost their lives over this gold crap? I would fix that later for both families with gold for their and their childrens' future college educations.

Sgt Clay and Sheriff Roy comforted me, and told me not to do any "rash" against whomever had done this, and that they and the FBI would "handle it". Yeah sure, I muttered to myself, if they ever catch them, the corrupt legal system will let them slide right through. Whomever did this needed my .45cal ACP as final headshots, and to be buried in a pit of hungry maggots.

The whole area around the mine and trailer was yellow-taped-off as a "Crime Scene", and no one was allowed to go near it. The M&MC Corp (Minerals & Mining Corp) Rep signed-out for the remaining safe's gold nuggets to be taken to the smelting factory and processed for me into bullion bars. Remember, I also had a huge cache of nuggets and ore stashed; I turned the over the gold ore to the company rep, and he said it'd be processed, too, along with the rest. I was hoarding 300-500lbs of the golf-ball-sized nuggets of pure 24kt gold, for my own use.

After all the coroner's ambulances, local Police and FBI cars had left, I went back to The Cabin to get some sleep; what I'd originally came her for on this lousy, cold, rainy day. I armed The Cabin, set the dusk-to-dawn spotlights, and built a roaring fire in the giant hearth. I was soaked, took a hot shower, did a load of laundry, put a wool blanket on my bed, and slumped into my overstuffed leather chair. I'd brought a Philly Cheese stake along, but wasn't very hungry, after all the death I just witnessed. I just poured a ¼ snifter of 50-yr old Cognac, and fell asleep in the chair, with Jenny curled-up beside me on her Kodiak Bearskin Rug. My weapons were within easy reach, as thy always are, up here. I wish it didn't have to be this way, but that damned gold had changed everything.

I got-up early to be at work in York at the GC&N Center by 8am, even though it would raining for the next 1-2 days, and I'd have to 're-revise' The Next 3 Weeks' Schedules, to accommodate the rain's mess. No complaints, as we needed the rain.

I arrived at The Cabin right about dusk, disarmed the building, and unloaded the Jeep. Jenny was happy to see me. I refilled her 3 bowls and she was satiated. I made Chicken Cordon Bleu, baby carrots, a baked potato and unfroze a slice of Key Lime Pie, for dinner. I was tired from working 6-day weeks in September and now in October for the Fall Sale, and still had four full Sundays ahead of me until I could cut back to a "normal" schedule, once again. At 60, this is getting to be too much. We're moving a lot of merchandise, and within 3-4 weeks, I have to place orders for 2011 nursery stock. The bareroot day lilies arrived Wednesday and Kim potted-up all 300 of them for the Spring, as she'd done with the 250 Clematis plugs last week, on trellises. They're safely stored in GH-1, until they "root-in" and are ready for sale in the Spring.

I turned on the local police scanner, built a medium-sized fire to take the chill-off The Cabin, turned-up the furnace to 70°F and slumped into my large, overstuffed leather chair in front of the massive hearth. Jenny curled-up on her Kodiak Bearskin Rug. I have beautiful, custom-installed hardwood floors in The Cabin, with large & small Oriental Carpets scattered everywhere, as I do back in my condo, over the existing carpeting. They're a real pleasure to walk on, especially during the cold mornings during the Winter months.

I got into the Jeep and drove down to the taped-off crime scene trailer at the mine vein, and saw that the CIS Investigator had taken multiple plaster prints of tiretracks and foot prints, for comparison. Maybe something would turn-up and find the lowlife scumbags who did this to the two poor dead guards.

I called Sheriff Bunce on my cellphone and asked if there was any progress on the murders. He said that 7 CIS Investigators and 3 FBI Agents, plus his staff were working on it, but that nothing had turned-up, just yet. He advised me to me "very vigilant", as the perps might return, knowing that I had 3½ tons of pure gold to my name, worth $1,757,518.13+, minus M&MC Corp (Minerals & Mining Corp)'s fees.

I told him that I wanted to take care of the two guards' familiies and their kids' educations, but he said the company had already provided for all of that amd more; it wasn't my concern. The main thing was to catch and prosecute to obes who killed them and ramsacked their trailer. The CSI and FBI would be fanning-out to known Groves and Holtzapples, and comparing finperprints and tiretracks, to try to tie them into the crime. He'd let me know when any progress was made, but not before, so it didn't compromise their investigation, not that he didn't trust me; it was just "procedure". I agreed.

I let the fire die-out, closed the damper, loaded my gear into the Jeep, said goodbye to Jenny after refilling her 3 bowls, armed the building and headed back to York. I had more paperwork waiting on my desk than I wanted, plus two ambiguous estimates Rich had done, needing clarification before I could finish them, plus 3-4 couples coming into the GC&N Complex over the weekend and next week, to review their estimates and plans. It was going to be a very busy October, as 2009's was, due to the breaking of the drought and cooler weather. I was ready for it.

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