Chapter 1 – Bent Tree Farm
It was a dark somber, rainy night at Bent Spoke Farm. A night stalker with a cold dead heart, already a practitioner of multiple serial murders was cruising, thrusting for blood, looking for possible victims and was on the loose in the land. This was farm country, where only a decade before, wolves had been the primary predator, but now there was something far more sinister than that loose in the landscape. It was bitter cold. Early winter storm clouds hung low in the deep black night sky. As the traveler looked out on both sides of the road, the thousand trees that lined that particular long stretch of deserted highway had long since lost their leaves, and now seamed both desolate and frightening. In one’s imagination, they appeared paused and ready to attack. The wooden fences with missing rails lined the road and made the farms look even more abandoned. A thin looking crescent moon peered out between the low hanging clouds, as only a few streetlights lined the long dark road. Hoot owls and the occasional car engine were all that broke the silence. Deep woods and acres sat beside the old country road, bubbling brooks, streams, and wide grass pastures and heavily tilled fields of long since harvested wheat and corn. The land appeared both ancient and isolated, with old farm houses set well back from the road.
During the day, this land might appear quaint and friendly, but on a dark night like this one, it felt somehow sinister, ominous and possibly even haunted by ghosts, and other spirits, both past and present.
A few miles just down the road around the bend, the death car rounded the curve and blew a tire. It was just a matter of chance, really. That the killer stopped to change that tire and the side of the road was on an embankment. This was mo place to stop to fix it.
So, passing the iron wagon wheel on the wooden post, the driver pulled the vehicle into the entrance to Bent Spoke Farm and noticing it was quiet as death, he lingered. He looked around carefully and hearing few sounds, he lingered some more. He got out and began to fix his tire, then stopped and listened some more and hearing nothing. He decided to investigate the old farm house as well.
The farmer, Ben Barns, the farmer’s family and even the livestock had long since retired for the night. Even the dogs were asleep in their kennels. It was bitter cold. .
It was the perfect night for murder.