CHAPTER THREE: THE INVADERS
Numbering three, the home invaders quickly concealed their black SUV within a patch of bushes.
"..... What about the rich bitch inside?"
"..... We're here for holdings nothing more....."
The oldest of the three, a man by the name of Stephen pointed his younger brother toward the property gate.
"..... Get the gates, and be sure to mind the security cameras....."
The girl Barbara, she was the youngest of the three. She laughed aloud on thoughts of the manor house's security.
"..... The rich bitch, she is all alone..... She will be too preoccupied with her feelings of family loss to care about security....."
"..... The Caretaker?" Christopher questioned as Stephen's younger brother quickly returned from the property's gates.
Stephen cracked a wide smile on his face on thought of the girl's one and only attendant.
"..... You two head on up to the manor..... The Caretaker, he's but an old sod of a man..... I'll take care of him....."
"Good!" Barbara spat. "That old coot gives me the creeps....."
The front gates opened freely. Stephen quickly looked on the two cameras, both were disconnected at the wires. Motioning his brother and his girl on to the manor, Stephen pulled loose a twelve inch hunting knife from a carrier attached to his belt on the right side.
The caretaker's place, it was old. Quite possibly as old as the creepy aging man himself. Brick and concrete was cracking to the building's foundations. Smoke was bellowing from the chimney atop the roof, suggesting to the intruder that the old man was enjoying the comfort's of his warmed home.
Stephen, he is of a stocky broad-shouldered build; but he was no real competitor in fighting or in lifting. The man, age of twenty-six; he walked with a slight limp. The man frequently favoring his right leg. This being from a time of unfortunate wounding by him, as he ran fearfully from a mass shooter's reigning bullets.
Acting tough, usually getting him through most situations, without the belligerent fool actually having to do anything real to defend himself.
Something moved quickly behind him. Stephen's attentions were now drawn to the old man's wood pile.
The twenty-six year old gripped tight the handle of his knife, as he circled to the right around the pile of timber logs. The dim light from a swinging hung lantern casting shadows upon the surrounding trees.
The caretaker was outside of his home. The old man was actively wiping his brow as he chopped.
Stephen shook his head. The face mask he was now wearing, it should not in any way interfere with his hearing, and yet; the twenty-six year old could not here the chopping and splintering sounds one would expect from the splitting of wood.
All manner a thought now played on his mind, on what the old man may be chopping up so late in the evening.
Getting a clear hold of fear's unwanted rising, Stephen leaped fast around the pile; his right arm raised to attack the caretaker from behind. The intruder's blade glinted from reflection of the lantern's shining light. The caretaker, he was gone.
The sight of a grotesque mutilation, made the would-be assassin queasy to his stomach. His first thoughts were that the guts, the flesh and the gore must have been some kind of animal that had been hunted down and slain. The look of the bloodied bits and pieces hairless flesh and the size of the remains, these did not hold up to that possibility.
The intruder's heart began to beat wildly, as he carefully circled around the freshly mutilated corpse. As he moved around to the far right side of the sickening sight, he could now make out what was slain. It was no elk, it was no deer or even a wild pig; as he would have hoped it would be. It was what at one time was a person, and it was too mutilated for the man to tell anymore about the victim.
Fear began to quickly over-take him. Backing away from the grisly scene, on a direct reversed course; Stephen slipped in the gore from the victim's remains. The man losing his footing.
The sounds from heavy booted feet walking slowly across a wooden plank floor from within the caretaker's home now caused the mane to confront a spontaneous bought with raised panic.
Stephen scrambled fast back up on to his feet. The twenty-six year old ran, the man doing the best he can to ignore the aching pain he was feeling from his limp leg.
His eyes set on the manor house, the frightened intruder tossed the gore soaked jacket he had been wearing over the property's perimeter wall, as he made fast for the manor's entry.