Thursday, 6 February 2020

The Lottery Of Evil - The Numbers Line Up

Tomorrow I will start proof reading my now complete book The Ramblings Of A Silly Old Man. I plan to have it published in Kendle format by Friday 14th February then in paperback by Friday 21st February.  On Tuesday 25th February I will begin finishing my book The Fantasies Of A Geriatric DJ, this will be part of The Sunshine Smile Crew's Lent project Rocking For The Food Bank.

The Lottery Of Evil is something I started more than a year ago. I have decided to pick it up and over the next year to wrap the story up in 80,000+ words. I want to share its progress here on the blog and invite people to comment on its progress.

My style when writing crime fiction is a bit different to the way I write in other genre. The text moved from one scene suddenly to another then back again, the way it does for a detective investigating a crime.  Our detective is Detective Chief Inspector David McDermott Head of Thames Valley's Major Crime Team.

Right now I am making a detailed plan before seriously starting to work. Yesterday I picked some pictures from the Net who look the way I imagine those taking part in The Lottery Of Evil look. As I write I will have their images in my mind helping me to develop their characters.  I would like to share the first draft of the introduction and as I write to include the first three of these lottery participants.

Here we go then.

The Lottery Of Evil - The Numbers Line Up

There were seven of them. Their total ages added up to one hundred and seventy-four, an average of twenty five.

He put his hand into the bag and pulled out a number, the first number in a lottery of evil.

"Number two, The Duke. Fetch him."

Detective Chief Inspector McDermott stroked the side of his temple as he thought. He ran his tongue across his upper teeth to help him put the words he wanted to say into the right order. He then gave a faint grin or was it an amplified frown ?

"Is this really a major incident Sir ?"

"It could be. It is a murder so by nature it could be classed as a major incident. I hope it is only just a murder."

"They why ......?"

The Chief Superintendent held up a hand to stop his junior colleague. He respected McDermott, he had a unique skill as a detective which was likely to be needed here. "Inspector Bishton having suddenly resigned I think this case would be better handled by your team. "I said I hoped this was just a murder but my fear is we will find out bit is a lot more."

"With respect Sir, this is a drug killing, one less dealer on the streets. I fail to see how that makes it a major incident." Silently he added, "It's doing society a favour," before his professionalism brought his professionalism into play. A murder is a murder with no possible justification but Detective Chief Inspector Dave McDermott would shed no tears for the dead body, he found it hard to attribute the title of victim.

With The Duke's prison cage now empty Mr X passed it by then moved slowly across the front of the other six, one by one in turn glaring at the occupant. "We are going," he said, "to remove the tape across your mouth so we can speak with you and you can answer. You will need to eat and drink but The Duke here will demonstrate to you all what will happen if you abuse the privilege or refuse to obey immediately without question every order Mr Y or I, Mr X, give.

The Duke felt the muzzle of the gun touch his naked buttock. The pain was only exceeded in magnitude by the deafening sound of the explosion echoing round the room. The tape was still across his mouth, it had not been removed as it was for the others, prevented The Duke from screaming i pain. He felt the other two shots, he heard them but there was no pain to overtake the initial. His mind momentarily began to race as it tried to take in what was happening and then it was still.

"Three woulds, Chief Inspector,"  the pathologist said. "This is probably the first or it could be the second. Entry into the flesh of the  buttock, I would have expected the bullet to have lodged in the pelvis. Strange that, I'll know more when I open him up and find the bullet from the third shot. Turn him over." He nodded to the two male attendants. "See, here's the exit wound," he pointed to the groin. "I am surprised the pelvis did not halt the bullet's progress. As you can see it missed his manhood which, I fear, would not have been a lot of use to him following the third and possibly the fatal shot."

Although he had no sympathy for the victim Dave McDermott's professionalism did not appreciate the attempt at humour.

"The second shot, if I am right in their order, was to the left bicep entering from the rear and exiting straight away. He would have fallen forward and to his right from that first shot to his buttock. Judging from the exit wound I think his arm was held up when that first shot was fired."

"Was he naked during the attack ?"

Most certainly.there are no signs of fabric in any of the wounds. I suspect he was naked for a time, just a gut feelings but there are marks on his body as if he was held in some kind of structure while naked.

Dave nodded.  As he viewed the body it was obvious beyond doubt this murder was drug related. This was a serious addict with injection marks on his arms,legs and what was left of his groin.

"He was turned over for the fatal shot. I am, however, thinking that fatal shot did not kill him instantly, again I will know more once I have opened him up. I very much doubt death was instantaneous, he would have been unconscious but I would make a bet it took more than an hour for him to die."

"Part of the killer's plan," Dave thought aloud.

One less addict. An estimated two hundred and seventy thousand addicts in England and two and a half thousand drug related deaths during the previous year. But this was murder, not strictly a drug related death.  Why kill an addict, a customer ? Many reasons. Dave would have to uncover the motive if he was going to find the killer. Knife crime was common where drugs were concerned but this was a gun, that alone could perhaps mean it justified being classed as a major incident. Unofficially there was little political will to solve drug related crimes, that was no doubt a frustration to former Inspector Bishton and his team. Perhaps the powers that be were giving Chief Inspector McDermott this case to change the apathy of those politicians. But the one and only exhibit found at the scene made it clear the
victim was more than an addict.

Pete wanted to scream but he dared not. He wanted to avert is eyes but feared if he did so the same fare could, indeed would, befall him. What was going to be his fate ?  What would be his end ?  When would it come ?

"He does not have a criminal record," Dave said to the team, "but he is kn own to us - so they tell me anyway."

He pointed to the post-mortem image on the board. Graham Jones, aged thirty-one, suspected of being a drug runner but intelligence has not given any indication as to who he is delivering for. A user himself as you can see here, here and here."

Dave considered that ex-Inspector Bishton had far more in his head and memory that was recorded on the computer.

"There will be DNA on the one item found with him but I am not optimistic."

"Do not fear,"  Mr X sneered, "the next winner in our lottery will not face quite that drama. We will wait twenty-four hours before deciding who that lucky winner will be."

Pete prayed it would not be him. He did not believe in god but still he prayed.


"They may be able to tell us the make of he printer used but that is not going to be a lot of help.  DNA ?  Don't get your hopes up. The note has been laminated. If they can lift the laminate there may be something but I doubt it. Lucky number one in the lottery of evil. May you be consumed in the fires of hell."

"A drug related murder ?  A gang killing of some sort ?    He was a user and he was a runner !"

Dave nodded. "But this is just a runner, such a brutal killing does not make a lot of sense although my instinct is telling me this has to be a revenge killing."

"He was not killed where he was found."  The team brainstorming continued.

"Apparently not. Cleverly dumped in a car park adjacent to the canal as it runs south out of the town.  No cctv close but we do have the 999 call to tell us he was there."

"Why call us ?"

"It has to be part of the plan. The call was made from an unregistered pay-as-you-go mobile so impossible to trace. I am wondering if the call was made from his own burner phone."

"Could be."

This was a drug gang killing, one gang moving to take over the operations of another but these days the next rung up the ladder controlled all the street dealers so, one would not be taking out another. Could it be related to the hierarchy up the chain ? Put operations out of business by taking pout the lowest level and scare off other runners ?  But what about the notice ?  Lucky number one in the lottery of evil. May you be consumed in the fires of hell.

"Who did this Graham Jones, The Duke, work for ? Why don't we know ? If there is a lottery and The Duke was number one who will be number two, three, four, more ?  Dave knew that most street dealers ran their operations with two, perhaps three, runners across the day. He needed to speak with Inspector Bishton.

"No idea where he is ?"

"But Sir I need to speak with him."

"He said he was taking a year abroad. I am not sure how much money he inherited, a few million I believe so the police service and pension are no longer of any interest to him. I get the feeling he did not enjoy his job."

"Could anyone get any satisfaction from never being able to properly get to grips with drug crime ?  I just wish He had left us the content of his mind before he left."

Dave found that he was casting his mind back to his first case, he was a mere detective constable then. The first victim of serial killer Timothy Ford. There was a similar brutality. Ford had a motive, a justifiable motive if such exists, could there be a similar motivation here ? No, the killing of The Duke was more straightforward. Or was it ?

"You !  You re not going back," Mr X said to Skinny Pete. "You are lucky winner number two in our lottery of evil. Prepare to receive your prize."

Seventeen year old Skinny Pete went white with fear. His prayers had not been answered.

"Do  not worry, you are not going to die. This will hurt you but you are not going to die."

Mr Y approached him with a total lack of skill in the art of tattooing. He carved I am a drug dealer down the length of each arm, on his forehead, across his chest and belly. Five indications which would leave nobody unaware of what Skinny Pete was. 

"Do  not thing we have forgotten your bum," Mr X sneered, "we have a different form of tattooing for that part of your anatomy."

I am not a drug dealer, Peter screamed inside his head. I do not use drugs, I do n ot sell them, I am only the guy who delivers them. I am innocent and now I am going to die just like the other one.

"So the medics have looked you over,"  Dave explained. "Your bottom is in a bit of a mess but it's nothing that did not once upon a time happen to every schoolboy in England."

"I am a schoolboy," Peter explained. "I was only doing what I was doing to get money for university. Now look at me !  My arse is on fire and I have tattoos all over my body."

"Tattoos can be removed, it will hurt a bit but it can be done."

"Can't hurt as much as my arse is hurting right now."

Dave smiles trying to reassure the lad. "So which university are you going to ?"

"Aston in Birmingham, if I get my grades but how can I go anywhere looking like this ?  Then he added, "And that is I do not go to gaol."

"That is not going to happen. You are not under arrest, you are a witness. We need to get you some proper clothes to wear, tell your family you are safe and then put you into witness protection."

"Please, I want you to get the two did this to me then I want you to get the dealer who set it all up for me. I am only an errand boy you know. There's another five errand boys waiting."

"Sergeant get Peter some clothes, time to get him out of this plastic suit when we can send out for a takeaway. What do you fancy ?"

"Fish and chips, actually could I have a chicken pie and chips ?"

The call came in before the food arrived. That call announced the third victim in the lottery of evil.

Victim number three, how many more would there be ? Pete had suggested a total of seven so three down and four to go. Chief Inspector Dave McDermott at worked hard at learning how to delegate and trop trying to do everything alone but he could not stop holding all case information inside his own thinking. It appeared that was how Inspector Bishton worked and look whar that had achieved.

"Sir we have three separate cases, I believe there will be more, upto four more if we can not get to the bottom of everything quickly.  I am asking you to second the officers in ex-Inspector Bishton's team to my team. I would like to assign a sergeant and a constable to each of these three cases and I will oversee the entire major investigation with my own bag man. Yes Sir this is a major incident."

"So you admit that then ?"

"Yes Sir."

"Three victims, you and your bag man, that's eight people. What are you going to do when victim number four comes in ?"

Chief Inspector Walker doubted the case could be solved in such a time but if there was an officer within his command in whom he had the the utmost faith it was Detective Chief Inspector David McDermott.

So it was that Detective Chief Inspector David McDermott became head of Thames Valley Police's combined drug and major incident teams with Sergeant Ripley as his bag man assistant. Sergeant Toll was put in charge of victim one The Duke, Sergeant mather Skinny Pete and Sergeant Richards the new victim number three.

Dave laughed as Sergeant Susan Ripley explained, "Susan Ripley became ripple, became raspberry ripple, became raspberry so Sergeant Raspberry reporting for duty Sir."

"I am sure you will make a great bag man, I mean bag lady, "Dave giggled. "So let's take a look at what we have."

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