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Re: The Wolf Master of Bimmel

10

10th December 2006

“Father Dimmet!” Stride cried out as he entered the church after the Sunday service.
The elderly priest, having once more delivered a shambles of a sermon, looked the balding Detective up and down, his weary eyes squinting somewhat.
“Yeah, what do you want?” He asked rather rudely.
Chris took the old man by the arm and whispered in his ear “we need to talk, it’s very important”.
When all the congregation had left the two men sat together on the pews, Jesus on his cross looking down on them from the stained glass windows.
“What did you want to talk about?” Dimmet asked, scratching his grey, wild hair.
“My name is Chris Stride, I’m a Detective in the Bimmel Police”.
“So?”
“So I hope that you can believe what I’m going to tell you”.
“I’ll try Detective Stride”.
“All right then, you know Craig Hallums?”
Rufus Dimmet looked at the ceiling, his lips contorting in confusion “Craig Who-llums?”
“Hallums, you know, the fat man who runs the burger bar? Ring any bells?”
“Ah yes” the priest smiled, nodding his head vigorously “Mr. Hallums, nice fellow, he’s building that youth centre y’know”.
“Yeah, so everybody keeps saying” Stride sighed, getting people to understand what Hallums really was when he had done such a good job of making friends would be exceedingly difficult “maybe I should give you some background info eh?”
“Go on”.
“In October a man was found dead on the street, his throat was ripped out, bitten out to be precise”.
“Ah yes, sad business”.
“Then, around 2 weeks later another murder took place, the victim was once more killed by a bite to the neck”.
“I remember”.
“And just a few days back some poor girl met the same end”.
“What does this have to do with Hallums?” Dimmet queried, he was always known as a man who was quite slow on the uptake.
“The girl worked for Hallums and when I questioned him he was openly mocking her”.
“That’s bad…right?”
“Right. Then I began to tail him around town, see what burger boy had under his fingernails and I found something”.
The priests thin lips opened ever so slightly “what?” he whispered.
“Hallums went into Uweton, Uweton Woods to be precise and I followed him. Eventually he met a man, the man you saw”.
“You mean The Wolf” Dimmet corrected.
“No” Stride stated firmly “it was a man, he wore the head of a wolf but it was a man”.
“What in Gods name -”
“Hallums and he talked, they exchanged bags”.
“Bags of what?” The not-so-Holy man asked in a troubled tone, his face creased with lines of worry.
“From what Hallums said” Stride muttered “the bags contained human meat”.
“That…that” Dimmet stuttered, his reptilian eyes flickering and changing “that’s a real pickle, but what can I do about it?”
“Speak out in your services” Stride pleaded “tell everyone about it, show that Hallums isn’t invincible”.
“But I’m just one man, I’m old and I’m weak, I can’t make a difference”.
“Do you want some sort of pep talk?” Chris asked impatiently “you’re a priest aren’t you? It’s your duty to speak out against injustices”.
“But as a Detective” Dimmet noted dryly “it’s your job to arrest the unjust, why don’t you do your job and then maybe I will do mine?”
“What’s your problem? Just tell people about it”.
Dimmet sighed, putting his aged face in his equally ancient hands “you have no proof do you?” He said with surprising clarity “without proof I’ll be sued for libel, you don’t just insinuate these things Detective, not with someone like Hallums”.
“Then come to the woods with me” Stride challenged, feeling as if he was so close to solving the crimes and nabbing the killer “bring a witness so there’ll be no confusion, when you see this weirdo and have two witnesses there’ll be no excuse”.
Dimmet suddenly smiled, knowing just the men who could accompany them to the woods.
“All right then Detective Stride” he said “I’ll take you up on that offer”.
“In the meantime” Chris retorted “I’m going to try and get the cavalry to catch these lunatics”.
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Re: The Wolf Master of Bimmel

11

11th December 2006

“You have to let me back on the force, I’ve found something very relevant to the case”.
““The case”?” Atkins mocked, his thick eyebrows raising with a disingenuous surprise “there is no case Stride, “the case” no longer exists for you, you are no longer a part of this police department”.
“Why?” Chris seethed “because you heard from Boyne that I was an alcoholic? There was no proof whatsoever!”
“The Christmas Party, 1998”.
“Are you in love with Boyne or something? The lad’s an idiot!”
“He wouldn’t lie, he has always been the most professional Detective at my disposal and that has not changed since your shameful dismissal”.
“Look” the former Detective nearly shouted, bringing his fist down on the table “Hallums is involved with some weird people, in Uweton Woods” he knew fully well that whilst Atkins was in charge there was no chance of him getting his job back but he thought it important to give this spineless coward one last chance to prove himself worthy of his power.
“And how did you find that out?” Atkins asked, knowing the answer already.
“I followed him”.
“You stalked him? You’re a stalker?”
“Only after my initial investigation failed!”
“Oh!” Atkins guffawed “and what was this investigation Chris? What? Did you break into his house?”
“No, his shop”.
“That was…that was you? You broke into his business?”
Stride looked at the floor, smiling ever so slightly “I guess it wouldn’t help if I denied it now?”
Atkins merely shook his head, the small mouth twisted in disgust.
“You break into his hop and follow that poor man like a slug on salt”.
“Um…slugs don’t like salt sir, it causes them to -”
“I don’t want to hear it!” Atkins roared “you get out of this station now, stay away from Hallums and stay away from me, it’s a conflict of interests for a police officer to associate with a criminal”.
Stride clapped sarcastically “very good. Now count to ten. Can you at least send some officers down to Uweton Woods? What about Boyne? I know he’d love a nice walk”.
Atkins merely scowled at his former Detective.
It was time to leave.
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Re: The Wolf Master of Bimmel

12

Stride, after having flushed his entire career down the toilet, made his way for the church where Dimmet was waiting for him.
Once he made his way past the heavy wooden doors he saw the old priest talking with two other men, dressed in black robes with white dog collars.
“Where have you been?” Dimmet laughed “we’ve been waiting for you!”
“Sorry, I just had some business to attend to. Are these the other priests you went with last time?”
“Last time?” One of them said, clearly baffled.
“Yeah” Stride answered briskly “Dimmet’s seen the Wolf before, he and some other priests went to the woods when they saw the man walking around”.
The priest looked at Dimmet sharply “you never mentioned this before”.
The old man looked rather embarrassed and twittered in his usual, undisciplined way “ah, you wouldn’t have believed me, walking wolves? I didn’t think it was your cup of tea. But how rude! I haven’t even introduced you to Detective Stride yet have I?”
One of the priests, a small man in reading glasses and thinning blond hair extended his hand.
“Father Errol Hadleigh” he said in his polite, Yorkshire voice.
“Pleased to meet you” Chris said simply, never too eloquent or friendly a man at the best of times.
The next priest also shook the Detective by the hand “Marty Worth” he exclaimed happily “I just left a church I set up in America”.
“Why?” Chris inquired, who would leave America for Bimmel?
“When God calls” Worth smiled softly “hanging up is not an option”.
“Everyone acquainted?” Dimmet asked, clapping his hands together and seeming more focused than any had ever seen him before “then let’s be off, this journey will not be easy by any stretch of the imagination”.

They rode to the woods in high spirits. Stride talked quite candidly with the two priests or as candidly as he could being one easily lost on theological matters.
“Do you not believe in God then?” Worth questioned casually.
“I just think it’s brainwashing, it’s cultish”.
“How so?” Hadleigh broke in.
“For a start you lads have to wear uniforms, there’s no place for independent conduct. Another thing, the Bible contradicts itself so many times, how can any of it be true? Y’know, I guess my real problem lies with Dogma”.
“The movie?”
“No, no, no, I mean dogmatic law or whatever that word is. This is wrong and this is right, you know what I’m saying? Not everything is set in stone”.
Worth laughed “no it’s not Chris, once upon a time it was forbidden to eat meat on a Friday now I can do so. But don’t you think that judging an entire faith on little trivialities is a little unfair?”
Stride laughed “not really padre, we have evolution and you have a carpenter who died 2000 years ago”.
Hadleigh chuckled slightly before nudging Dimmet with his elbow “what do you think Rufus? Is it right for the church to be engulfed in dogmatic rules or not?”
But Dimmet merely stared out of the window as if in deep thought and would not be moved to speech.

After more of this idle talk they came to the great Uweton woods.
With men he trusted Chris felt a great deal better but he had grown accustomed to the idea that he would never be truly comfortable amongst those blackening, lurching trees and the strange cries and screams which rose up from their branches.
“I can’t say that I’m very fond of being here” Hadleigh shivered as the heavy air weighed down on him.
Stride smiled, attempting to lighten the mood somewhat “we won’t stay long” he soothed “the last time I was here I wanted to leave as quickly as possible, didn’t you Father Dimmet?”
Rufus Dimmet looked up suddenly, his eyes glassy and his tongue flicking out to lick his rubbery lips “eh? What? Oh yes, when I came here I wasn’t too keen, seeing that…thing made the whole journey even worse let me tell you”.
“It wasn’t a thing” Chris butted in rather knowingly “it was a man, didn’t see much of him but it was human”.
“You sure about that?” Dimmet asked, chewing on his thumbnail.

At the end of their long walk all four men stood in front of the wooden hut, it seemed so small when Chris was merely a spy but now it loomed over him as a fell wind whistled through the dead leaves and rotten branches.
“What are we looking for?” Worth asked.
“The Wolf” Dimmet responded gravely, his face no longer that of a witless buffoon but a man of strength and grand resolve, all joviality removed and instead replaced by an icy, imperious snarl “but we need to be careful” he pointed to a great many logs which had been chopped asunder by an axe which still lay by the side “if he is not here he will soon return”.
Stride, Hadleigh and Worth all concurred and the Detective among the Priests volunteered himself to check around the back of the cabin to see if they were completely alone.
Chris walked quickly to the back of the shabby house, noticing odd carvings upon the wooden walls as he went.
The back of the hut was not very different from the front, there was still yellow and brown grass, still annoying roots which entangled unwary travellers and still the same heavy, weakening air.
But what was peculiar were the clumps of fresh dirt which matted the land, some small, some large, large enough to hide a body under.
“Brace yourself” he thought coldly “brace yourself for the worst”.
And the worst was what he got for when he kicked away the thin layer of dirt on a small mound he saw the screaming mouth of a severed head.
Suffice to say he needed no further evidence of what lay in the ground.
“This man” he thought with both wrath and disgust “this man is a butcher, he uses his back garden as a personal graveyard”.
Careful not to tread by accident on the tomb of another unfortunate he made slow steps towards the windows on the back wall and looked into the next room. It was a tiny little place with only a bed and a table to decorate it, no colour, no charm, no life, it was the room of an empty man and wholly empty itself.
“Detective Stride” a firm voice called out and Chris saw that Dimmet stood behind him.
“What are you doing here?” Stride asked “I thought you were watching at the front of the hut for the man to come back”.
“Ah” the old priest chuckled ruefully “I’m afraid that those youngsters got slightly annoyed with me after a while”.
“It’s only been around five minutes”.
“They said I’d be better off helping you out, do you need any help Detective”.
Stride frowned but his severity gave way to an understanding smile “all right. Keep watch and for the love of God don’t step on anything…or anyone”.
Chris looked through the next window and into the living room, two large grey dogs were sleeping soundly next to each other and on a hook hung the wolfs scalp.
“Dimmet!” Worth cried out.
“Looks like you’re wanted Father” Chris chuckled and the old priest went around the hut to see what the problem was.
Stride continued to look into the living room and noticed that one of the dogs was stirring, its heavy head begging to rise, the mouth opening in a lazy, innocent yawn.
If they were awakening then they could sure as hell make enough noise to bring back their owner.
They had to get out of there.
The Detective ran madly around the cabin.
“Dimmet! Hadleigh! Worth!” He cried “I think now would be a good time to leave”.
But when he stood by the front of the house he stopped dead, the colour beginning to be drawn from his face.
Two bodies lay motionless on the ground, their heads cleaved from their necks.
Dimmet stood above them and slung the axe over his shoulder, his face now engulfed in the shadows of his own madness.
“Detective” he said quietly, pleasantly “let’s chat shall we?”
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Re: The Wolf Master of Bimmel

13

“Father…” Stride stammered “did you…what…what, what have you done?”
Dimmet looked at the corpses and licked the blood from his free hand “Chris, don’t make this harder than it is already. Look at them, look at their heads, they’re dead Chris. Dead. By my own hand”.
Stride shook his head, he did not know this holy man very well, he had not attended church since the grim days of his childhood but he couldn’t, wouldn’t believe that a man like Dimmet would ever do such a thing.
“You have to admit it” Dimmet smiled encouragingly “admit that I’m a murderer and we can move on from there”.
“You…killed them?”
Rufus Dimmet nodded rather sadly.
“Why?” Chris Stride asked, holding his head in his hands, willing himself to regain his composure. He had seen many corpses, many dead men, women and children but this new brutality took some getting used to.
“Why what?” Dimmet whispered “why did I do it? Why did they deserve it? What do you want to know?”
“Why did you kill…no, why did you murder them?”
“Ah” the old man chuckled, setting down the axe and rolling up the sullied sleeves of his robe “here it is. The part of this tale where the evil villain reveals his whole motivation to the hero right? Where I lay my life on the table like a deck of cards so the psychoanalysts can use my memories as part of some little textbook for filthy teenagers, is that it Detective? Is this where I reveal that, I dunno’, I was beaten as a child? My father was a drunk? My mother a whore? Is that what you want?”
“Just tell me why!” Chris raged, holding his stomach to keep the vomit in.
“We needed privacy” he shrugged “I had been planning to settle this score since Hallums told me of you and then you come to that God forsaken church and tell me of your little espionage! Amusing isn’t it? You see, I am this wolf, I am the lord of these woods and the lord of Bimmel should I desire it”.
“You’re insane” Stride spat, diverting his eyes from the oozing wounds on the two dead priests.
“Again” Dimmet frowned “again you seek to prize out some motivation by questioning my sanity. The question you must ask yourself is this; Who is truly mad? The axe-wielding murderer or the Detective who seeks to put the dead to rest? Truth is Chris, the dead can’t rest because they are part of me now, they are in me, they are I and I am them”.
Stride remembered the bags, the garden full of corpses and now could not contain his sickness as he fell limply to his knees as the bile escaped his mouth.
“Cannibal” he spluttered “oh sweet merciful Christ, you are actually a cannibal!”
Dimmet folded his arms rather sternly “think I bit those brats necks out for my own amusement? This here is my sanctuary, my refuge from that little charade I put on for the peons of that town. Worship this! Pray to that! Ha!” He aimed a kick at the destroyed body of Worth “it’s a miracle I haven’t lost my marbles after tending to that rabble but as long as I get my fill of Christ’s blood and Christ’s flesh I’ll continue for many years yet”.
Stride shook his head, it was all an act? The Dimmet he knew was just a mask? He looked at that face and knew it was true. The man who so obviously knew nothing was gone, it was a superb performance but like all performances it altered when the curtain came down.
“Look” Dimmet yawned “I’m getting tired, I’ll see to Tweedle-Dee and Tweedle-Dead here and why don’t you take a little time out until Hallums makes his annual visit?”
Suddenly Chris felt an old fist smash into his jaw and all went black.
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Re: The Wolf Master of Bimmel

14

“Leg or arm Craig? What’s it gonna’ be?”
“That’s your area mate, not mine”.
Stride only heard the voices of Dimmet and Hallums as his eyes were still engulfed in darkness.
“Damn arm” Dimmet growled and there was a loud slicing sound “this stupid priest is tougher dead than alive”.
Hallums cackled like a crow atop a gibbet “try again” he encouraged “stick at it”.
There was another slice and a loud plopping sound.
Dimmet now chuckled warmly “Father Worth, Father Worth, Father Worth, what are we to do with you?”
Chris began to open his eyes, his hands twitched but as the scene came into focus he felt another tide of sickness within him for Dimmet was gnawing on the arm, sinew stretching and blood dripping from his lips. By his feet was a belt full of cleavers, all matted with flaking, blackening blood.
“You don’t know what you’re missing” Dimmet slavered “hey, think I should offer the Detective any?”
Hallums snorted “it’d be more than he deserved”.
Chris felt as if he’d been shot and, rising on his elbow, tried vainly to regain his health.
“Wakey, wakey” Hallums smiled viciously “rise and shine Chris”.
Dimmet threw the arm to the wooden floor disdainfully, wiping away the gore from his mouth with one of his discoloured sleeves.
“Good to see you” he said simply.
Stride painfully got to his knees and to the amusement of his hosts rose to his feet by clinging desperately to the windowsill.
“Are you quite finished?” Dimmet asked, his two dogs frisking happily around his legs “would you like a chair?”
Chris could barely hear them, all the words failed to register, he was trapped, trapped like a fly in a spiders web. His flesh would be eaten, his bones scattered amongst the trees. Nothing else seemed worth thinking of.
Stride looked at his two captors, the thin face of Dimmet now a wholly different man to the one he talked with at the church, his features far sharper, his eyes like those of a horrific bird of prey. Hallums stood with an eternal smirk, his head shaking in disdain and contempt.
“Detective” Dimmet smiled, picking up his belt and fastening it around his waist “I take it from your green tinge that I cannot interest you in a meal?”
Stride looked out of the window and gave a horrible scream, falling back in terror.
“Oh” Hallums sneered “I take it you saw Father Worth?”
In fact he had only seen his head which had been stuck on a long pole and now bobbed and shook in the night.
“Oh God” Chris wretched “oh God no”.
“You saw what you saw” Dimmet remarked “and now we have to decide what to do with you don’t we?”
“Let’s just kill him” Hallums snapped “you’ve got two heads so why not make it three?”
“No. I don’t think that should be his fate, why not make it interesting? Give him a chance to escape”.
Stride looked at the priest with hateful eyes, all he wanted was an escape, he just wanted to leave that hut and the people in it forever but Dimmet yearned to mutilate his prey before striking the killing blow.
The old man threw a cleaver at the splayed out feet of Stride.
“Take it” he ordered “and get on your feet, we’re going to have ourselves a little duel”.
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Re: The Wolf Master of Bimmel

15

Hallums picked Stride up and set him on his feet, placing the cleaver in one limp, sickly hand. “Look lively!” The fat man mocked with a snigger.
Dimmet opened the door and the cold wind of the night rushed in.
The old man then picked the wolf scalp from the wall and headed outside.
Stride followed, shivering and terrified, the cleaver felt too heavy to wield.
They stood before each other as the leaves rustled and danced in the wind.
“What shall we say?” Dimmet asked casually “first to lose a limb? First to die? First blood?” he bit his bottom lip in glee “I guess it depends doesn’t it? How do you want to lose?”
Stride looked at Hallums standing nearby, there was no chance of escape, he could barely walk, his arms held no strength. He didn’t want to fight, in fact he felt psychically incapable having just woken up from being knocked unconscious and still wishing to throw up whenever he thought of those headless bodies which the false priest had consumed so greedily.
“Hallums!” Dimmet called out.
“Yeah Rufus?”
“What should the winning conditions be? I can’t get any blood from this stone”.
“Ah” Craig giggled “you don’t wanna’ kill him yet do you?”
“I’d rather not”.
“Well then, how about First Limb Lost?”
Dimmet nodded politely “brilliant choice. All right my dear Detective, we are going to fight each other and the first man to lose a limb loses the duel. Wait, Craig, what if I chop off his head? Does that count as a limb removal?”
“Well…no, I don’t think so but there’ll be no chance of a rematch after that will there so you’ll still have won the duel…technically speaking”.
Stride made several, unintelligible noises. Were they really talking so casually about ripping him apart piece by piece?
Dimmet looked at his opponent and slowly, reverently placed the wolf scalp atop his head, giving a mighty, exhaling cry of joy, his arms twitching and shaking in an ecstatic spasm.
Dimmet seemed to go quite mad as the furry, grey and white scalp touched his skin, the eyes widened like a man hanging from a noose, his mouth salivating and soundlessly growling and his fist clenching around the meat cleaver.
The Wolf of Uweton was very much alive.
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Re: The Wolf Master of Bimmel

16

Stride looked on in terror as his unwanted enemy charged toward him, just who was he facing?
He had no way of knowing just how far gone Rufus Dimmet was, long years had rendered his mind impotent of pity or compassion and every day he rotted until he was filled with a hatred of all who weren’t him.
Even the alliance with Hallums he despised, being built upon the kind of loyalty one would find in well-bred dogs.
He hated almost everything and everyone save for his own dogs who he tended to and loved and the scalp he wore when hunting his prey for when he wore that scalp he was no longer a man but a wolf, a ravenous, unseen beast.
Or at least that was always what he thought.
Whatever magical properties he presumed to hold he still was human and still allowed himself a tiny smile as he neared his foe, the dirty sleeves rolled up and ready for some devilish butchery.
Stride backed away in fright, weakly raising the cleaver.
“Stop it” he hurriedly said, attempting to reason with a man who did not understand the term “just stop it, we can talk”.
Dimmet continued to veer forwards like a juggernaut, his face like stone, the scalp bobbing up and down.
With a crash Dimmet swiped at Chris but the Detective dodged out of the way, tripping on his own lazy feet as he did so.
Madly Stride hit back, waving his arm to and fro, closing his eyes as he did so, his heart pounding.
“Fight properly!” Hallums mocked from a safe distance but Stride was in no rush to do so, he felt slightly stronger, his muscles were warming up but he was still by no means prepared.
When Chris opened his eyes he saw that Dimmet was standing before him, feeling his cheek for in his frenzy he had actually gave the old man a nasty ****.
Dimmet shook his head in absolute, mind warping fury and slapped the Detective across the face, sending him hurtling to the ground.
“Yeah!” Hallums cheered “that’s it! He showed you didn’t he?!”
Stride looked above him, the figure of The Wolf was clothed all in shadow, the blade a ghastly silhouette on the moon.
“Now you’re in for it!” Hallums cackled.
“I don’t have time!” Stride thought in a crazed rush “I don’t have time to get out of the way! He’s going to kill me!”
Swish!
Chris gave an awful cry as the cleaver sliced into his shin, it felt as if he’d just been strapped to the electric chair and the guillotine at the same time. He rolled around in agony, throwing his hands up in anguish, his eyes trying to leap from his head.
Hallums laughed morbidly.
The cleaver struck down once more.
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Re: The Wolf Master of Bimmel

17

18th December 2006

“Stride? C’mon, even you’re not that deaf. Detective Stride. We need to talk, we need to find out who did this to you”.
Chris grimaced painfully, the voice sounded familiar but he needed some clarification before he gave anyone the benefit of being awake.
“Who is it?” He said with mock sleepiness.
The man laughed in his thick Irish accent “uh” he said sheepishly “well Stride, it’s Boyne…Bill Boyne”.
The Detective opened both his eyes at once, his mouth narrowed and his head shook in rage.
“Boyne” he said quietly “Detective Bill Boyne?”
“Bill Boyne” he retorted absently.
Stride, despite his numerous, crippling wounds was begging to feel somewhat energised. He gave a long sigh “okay then”.
And then, like a cat pouncing on a rat he sat up and with his one hand strangled the Irishman for all he was worth.
“You bastard!” He raged “you no good son of a bitch! ******** sucking piece of crap! You got me thrown off the force! You got me thrown off! You ruined my career!”
Boyne broke away, panting and spluttering “god…” he wheezed “why in…urgh…why in Christ’s name did you do that Chris?!”
Stride leant back on his bed, folding his arms as best he could “you said I was an alcoholic, you told Atkins that I went to AA meetings!!”
Boyne laughed, regaining his breath “oh, that load of crap? That was just a lie, we’re not going to let that stand in the way of our friendship are we?”
“Can’t you hear yourself?!” Chris gasped, unable to comprehend the stupidity on display and still being in excruciating pain after his little “accident”.
“I can hear myself perfectly” Bill snapped “I can hear myself asking you once more what the hell happened, who did this?”
“Atkins wouldn’t believe me even if I said” Stride muttered.
Boyne shrugged “true, but he’s not in charge anymore. You see, when a Detective who has served the town for over ten years has his right hand and left food hacked off people get kinda’ angry. In short, they look for a scapegoat and Atkins fit the bill, I mean everyone was up in arms”.
“What? Really?”
“Yeah. The mayor of both Bimmel and Efforwich, citizens groups. Heh, even that old idiot Dimmet was appealing for witnesses”.
“Excuse me?” Stride whispered, his mouth hanging open and all the pain and degradation of that night coming alive once more.
“Yeah” Boyne smiled “first time he’s been really serious, had a real chip on his shoulder. Shouting and screamin’, accusing anything that moved. Didn’t know that he thought so highly of you”.
“He doesn’t” Chris said firmly, grinding his teeth in indescribable anger.
“What?”
“Boyne. You have to listen to me, I took Dimmet and two other priest with me into the Uweton Woods”.
“Well” Bill chuckled rather nervously “it’s not my thing but who am I to question what other people do in the privacy of their -”
“Shut up and listen. We were looking for the Wolf because I saw that he was in league with Craig Hallums, they were trading human meat with each other”.
“So?”
“It’s illegal Boyne”.
“Ah, I see”.
“Anyway, when we got to the hut Dimmet killed the two other priests and showed his true colours. He was biting the throats out of those people, he’s a goddamn sicko cannibal and he and Hallums did” he looked at his mutilated body and had to hold back tears of both grief and wrath “this, they did this to me. The next thing I know, I’m in this bed”.
“Hallums and Dimmet?” Boyne squinted rather disbelievingly “but…why? Hallums is a decent man, Dimmet doesn’t seem so bad”.
“Just arrest them!” Stride cried desperately, would no one believe him? Was it outside the realm of possibility that Hallums and Dimmet weren’t perfect?
“Go to the woods” Chris growled with more than a hint of bitterness “there is a hut, around the hut are buried many bodies and many body parts. And, oh yeah, the small matter of two severed heads outside the front door”.
“Um…maybe I’ll get someone else to go” Boyne shuddered.
“Also” Stride snapped, his voice growing quicker “head to Bimmel Burger, in the freezers there is meat that is probably human. Don’t be fooled like I was. Don’t…screw up like I did”.
Suddenly both men turned their attention to the slowly opening door, a bouquet of fine flowers poked through and then the sheen of a bald head.
“Now, now” an arrogant voice laughed, obviously unaware of the Detective’s rapid recovery “where’s Chrissie-boy? Where’s my favourite comatose?”
And there, in the flesh, the smile drained suddenly from his face, was Craig Hallums.
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Re: The Wolf Master of Bimmel

18

In fact, Hallums had been visiting the stricken man quite often as he flittered in and out of consciousness. Bringing him an assortment of putrid flowers with insulting messages such as;

“Don’t worry Copper, I’m not a bad guy, in fact, I’m just like you; ‘Armless
C.H”

And;

“You’re special, so special, so special that next year you’re going to the Paralympics
C.H”

In fact, the day after he and Dimmet had crippled him Hallums bought himself a bottle of champagne which was still on ice, waiting to be opened on the event of his death. Oh yes, he was very brave when a man was unconscious or missing a foot but now that his unofficial jester had awoken and stood with a fellow Detective Craig Hallums looked very silly indeed.
““My favourite comatose”?” Boyne whispered, giving Craig a peculiar, sidelong glance with his sharp, dishonest eyes “what in Gods name did you mean Mr. Hallums?”
Craig put up his hand defensively and tried to speak but found no words apart from a grunt and a whimper.
“Lost for words?” Stride spat “how about this pearl of wisdom, oh, it’s real peachy; “Come on Rufus, you get his hand and I’ll get his foot”. Remember that Craig?”
Hallums again found nothing to say.
Boyne rose from his chair and walked reproachfully towards the new visitor “were you involved?” He whispered “did you do this to him?”
Hallums looked at the Irish Detective with a sudden disgust and then at Stride.
“Chris” he finally said with so much hatred it made Boyne shiver “why don’t you come down to my shop, free burgers but…oh damn! I forgot, silly me! “No shirt, no feet, no service”. Ah well, I’m sure I’ll be seeing you around sometime or maybe not, I tend to be places that don’t have ramps”.
He threw the flowers on the floor and went to leave but Boyne, having seen enough grabbed him by the shoulder.
“One second Mr. Hallums” he said firmly “I think I’d like to talk with you at the station and maybe we’ll do a nice little search of your shop”.
Hallums smiled at these words, not arrogantly nor confidently but a withering, paper thin smile as terrible memories came flooding back about what the people and police in Bimmel would do.
They would crucify him, hang him from a lamppost or even burn him to death and the police would look on and do nothing.
“No” he said to himself at this last memory “no! No! No! Not this time! Not again!”
He broke away from Boyne’s tight grip and with an insane cry ran out of the room and out of the hospital.
For ten minutes neither spoke, they just looked at one another and then at the flowers and then at the open door.
“Well” Boyne commented at last “that was strange”.
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Message 19 of 40 (1,382 Views)
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Re: The Wolf Master of Bimmel

19

Yet whilst Hallums fled Dimmet was where he began, in a Church he hated paying lip service to a God he despised.
The door opened with a crash and three policemen who entered the church rather apprehensively saw Father Rufus Dimmet praying by himself in front of the altar.
“Father Rufus Dimmet?” One of them said sternly.
The old man did not even flinch or look at them “I’ve been expecting this” he said rather sadly “please, state your business officers”.
“Could you come down to the station and maybe answer some of our questions?”
Dimmet, eyes still closed, hands together gave a small, knowing smirk “what are these questions about?” He asked.
“The attempted murder of Detective Chris Stride” one said angrily.
“The party’s over then” Dimmet muttered but no one heard him and with a start he stood up, smiling and friendly “I take it that you believe me in some way to be responsible?”
They said nothing.
“Look, sit down, I’ll make you all a cup of tea and we can talk this over”.
Dimmet disappeared very grimly through a side door but was not making any tea, he was picking up a cleaver and preparing an escape.

“Where’s that tea?” One officer called out after the old man had not shown himself for almost five minutes.
“Oh” Dimmet called out “just a second” and from the white door near the confessional both he bought in three cups of tea and shared them out, sitting on the pews beside the policemen.
“Now then” the priest said rather sharply, dropping his mask of idiocy ever so slightly “why do you think I was involved”.
“Well” the police officer who seemed most professional grunted, sipping his drink “Stride named you personally Father, said you have a hut in the woods, said you wear a wolf scalp like some kinda’ Pagan, apparently you have a back garden full of corpses”.
Dimmet shrugged, feeling silently for the cleaver he had hidden under his robes “it sounds to me gentlemen that Detective Stride has been taking recreational drugs again”.
“Again?”
“Oh yes, I don’t like to tell tales but when he was in confession he told me that he used to do crack, LSD, sniffing glue, doing the zebra, you know the kind of thing surely?”
“Confession eh?” Another man blurted, beating his chest to get the tea through his system “he comes to this Church often does he?”
“Of course” Dimmet said airily, making a rather unfortunate mistake.
“Well” the officer frowned “I don’t know what lie to expose first, you’ve gave me so many options; I’ve known Chris for four years and he is not a Catholic, hell, he ain’t even a Buddhist”.
“I should certainly hope not”.
“Plus, I can tell a drug addict a mile off and Christopher Stride was no junkie”.
“So he’s just a pathological liar?”
“Also Father Dimmet, I have never heard the term “doing the zebra” before? Are you sure that you aren’t puffing the magic dragon yourself?”
Dimmet smiled, barring his teeth like a shark, his eyes suddenly blackened by a deepening shadow.
“Oh dear, dear, dear. It seems as if wagging tongues make for firm deceits doesn’t it? What is sadder? This tale of wolf-scalps and makeshift cemeteries or the fact that one of your ilk seems to actually believe it?”
They all continued to drink, merely out of politeness for the tea tasted disgusting.
“Well then, maybe I should illuminate the darkness you walk in. Stride is indeed telling the truth, I have killed over twenty people and consumed their flesh, some I give to the dogs and some I sell to Craig Hallums – yes, the Craig Hallums – in exchange for information on this pitiful little town and its disgusting inhabitants. And while I’m at it, there is a wolf-scalp I wear, partly because I admire the animal so much, partly because I feel its spirit surging through me even as we speak and partly, my good policemen, because I am just one sick old bastard. But why? Why am I admitting this? Why would I be stupid enough to put my own head in the noose?”
“Good question” one policeman asked, open mouthed and sickened.
“Well, I hate to turn into a politician whilst entertaining, but I suppose I must answer that question with another question; Why in the hell were you stupid enough to drink a cup of tea filled with rat poison?”
They all looked at their mugs and cups, their stomachs had not yet troubled them, was it a bluff.
But as they pondered this Dimmet stood to his feet and pulled out his meat cleaver, cutting the men down like a scythe through wheat.
He rummaged through the dead men’s pockets and took every wallet, picture and wedding ring he could find before running out of his old, false life.
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