She heard the footsteps and guessed the guy was about ten yards behind her. It must be a man. They are too heavy for a woman. Another few hundred yards and she would reach safety – her garden flat home. I swear, no more drug runs for Ben Turner, she thought. This is too risky. Her heart pounded faster. She could hear it thumping in her chest until the sound of her panting blocked it out. She could smell aftershave. It wasn’t her cologne, nor was it her breathlessness she could now hear. Before the lights went out, she thought, Fuck you, Ben!
When she regained consciousness her first sensation was movement. I’m in the boot of a car. She was unable to see anything. I must be blindfolded. She tried to check for a blindfold but trying to move her arms was futile. Her hands were tied behind her back and she couldn’t move her legs as they too were bound. Then she felt a searing pain in the back of her head and lost consciousness once more.
Clueless as to time, she knew she was in a strange room. It stunk of urine. In the distance she heard the low rumble of motorway traffic. Her head still hurt, her eyes unable to pierce the gloom, but she could see shadows. The blindfold’s gone. On trying to move, she heard a scuffling noise and knew she was tied to a chair. She heard a door open but was unable to see in the dark. Then she heard footsteps walking away and heard a second door open. A few moments later, a car engine started and the headlamp beams flooded both doorways and the room with bright light, penetrating the darkness. She was forced to shield her eyes from the light, but through her fingers she saw the figure of a man in front of her. A man dressed in black, wearing a ski-mask. He held a long knife in front of him. He cut the tape across her mouth before running the blade down her cheek. She felt the blood as it ran to the corner of her mouth, giving her the metallic taste of her own blood.
“Who are you?” she asked in panic. “Is this about the drugs? Here, have them.”
Removing his mask, the man in black said nothing.
With his face bathed in the light from the headlamp beam she recognised him. “Oh god, why are you doing this?” She knew then this was nothing to do with the half-kilo of cocaine in her jacket pocket belonging to Ben, her lover.
Silently, he walked a few feet to a table set against the far side of the room. Picking up the tool set on the table, he turned back to his prisoner. She screamed on seeing the chainsaw. Pulling on the cord, he fired it up, then cut off his victim’s right arm at the elbow. She went into shock. Moments later the man used a blowtorch to cauterise the wound. Still, he said nothing. He cut the ties to move his unconscious captive, carrying her to a makeshift operating table in the middle of the room. Placing her on her back, he forced her mouth wide open with a clamp and using a scalpel, he cut out her tongue. Wiping his bloodied rubber gloves on his black jumpsuit, he reached for a meat cleaver. With one fierce blow to her slim neck, he cut right through skin, muscle, sinew and bone. Her head now rolling on the table, he was satisfied she was dead. Still he said nothing.
Bloody murder over, he left the room. His car was parked outside the deserted outbuilding, one of the few remnants of an abandoned former airfield close to a motorway twenty miles away from London. He opened the boot of his car, pulled out a black plastic refuse sack and removed his jumpsuit and gloves, placing them inside the sack. Any casual observer would have also seen two other clean jumpsuits and unused sacks.