Marian Wood: A Weapon for Murder

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A weapon for murder

By Marian Wood

10th January 2020

A man in the garden

Staring out of the window, Marsha dropped her favourite mug. Steaming hot coffee swept down her legs as she saw the hooded figure in the garden with a long knife. Cursing at the pieces of china on the floor, her heart was pounding as she jumped across the kitchen and turned the key in the back door.

Sitting on the kitchen floor, she reached in her pocket and dialed. Listening to the usual message, the figure was now banging at the back door.

“Hello, police, there’s a man with a knife trying to get in.”

“Okay, your address please and we’ll send a team out.”

Giving her address she struggled to talk.

“They’re banging on the door.”

“A team is on their way.”

“Mum, what’s going on?”

“There’s someone out there with a knife.”

“Flipping heck, it’s chucking it down with rain and that’s Freddie.”

“Freddie. Why the hell is he in the back garden with a machete.”

“Oh mum, machete.”

Opening the door, Freddie fell in.

“My god, Stella, it’s raining cats and dogs, I was drowning out there.”

“Freddie, why the knife? What’s going on?”

“It’s cool, Muffin found it.”

Crying, Marsha now shouted, “Take that bloody thing out of here, get rid of it.”

“Hello, police.”

“Sorry officer, there’s been a misunderstanding,” Freddie said.

“Sir, please put down the machete.”

Putting it on the kitchen floor, he was confused. “Sorry, Muffin found it as we were walking over here.” Stammering now, he said, “I didn’t mean to scare Marsha.”

Another officer wearing gloves picked up the knife and placed it in a large bag. Shaking his head, he looked at the Jack Russell, wagging his tail. He sealed the bag and handed it to his colleague.

Two weeks earlier

Terry sat staring at his pint, wishing his problems away with beer. Not sure how to tell Marsha about what was happening, the threats just kept coming. As the cold froth slipped down his throat, he shook, replaying the previous evening. The shouts echoing around the dark alley as the brown-haired man had grabbed and slammed him hard against the wall.

“Your money, now.”

“I’m broke.”

“Boss wants his money, you know the consequences.”

“I have none.”

“You have till tomorrow, then ‘Big Red’ will be after you. You know what that means.”

He knew who ‘Big Red’ was. He was notorious for getting the job done, in any way possible.

Sitting watching the bubbles in his beer, he heard a shuffle behind him.

“You Terry?”

“Who’s asking?” His heart hurt his chest as he turned around and saw the man with a bald head and snake on his right arm.

“You’re Terry, come outside with me.”

Picking up his beer, he reluctantly got down from his stool. He didn’t have the money and now started praying.

Baldie nudged him towards the door.

“You won’t need your drink, walk.”

Tripping out of the bar, he now saw the gang and van standing outside. Terry started to shake again, he wanted to be left alone with his drink. He could feel the world closing in on him as two men appeared and bundled him into the van. As the engine rumbled, he could feel his hands being bound behind him.

What now, where were they going?

“Right Terry, boss wants a word with you.”

“I’ve already said, I’m broke.”

“Well, this won’t end well then.”


About an hour later. Terry found himself in front of an almost seven-foot, red-headed brute. As he pulled out the long knife, Terry knew what was happening next. There was no way out of this. His mess of losing his job and talking to a loan shark had ended here.

Why hadn’t he just talked to Marsha?

Hands bound he could hear the jeers as the brute slammed the shiny metal knife into him. He was aware of the blood oozing out as the world turned black around him.

This was it, he couldn’t pay up, so ‘Big Red’ had taken his life. His life in exchange for a few measly thousand pounds.

Terry missing

It was after Marsha had phoned the police that his body was found in Fort Wood, an hour from her home. Death by stabbing, a cruel grisly death. She had no idea what had happened, suffering a huge shock her nightmares had started.

Seeing Freddie in the garden, she had thought that they had come for her. Walking across her garden brandishing a machete had been a stupid act. Sitting with a police lady and Stella, she agreed that counselling would be helpful.

Meanwhile the police interviewed Freddie, needing to know where he had found it. Taking them into the garden and down the long path into the woodland at the back, he proudly showed them the thick bushes it had been lying under. The detective spoke into his radio.

“Sarg, get the dogs here, will you? We need to check there’s just a machete.”

The bodies

Twenty minutes later the dog van appeared. Freddie watched fascinated as four Alsations were put on leads and led into the Wood. Ten minutes later he heard frantic barking and then radio activity.

“We have two bodies here, buried, we need to tape off the wood now.”

Freddie was shocked. Finding the machete, he didn’t think about Terry. He had been with Stella a short time and was known for being thoughtless. His hobby was computer games, war, and fighting.

Why hadn’t he thought of murder?

The gang found

The police were aware of ‘Big Red,’ but till now had no hard evidence against him. Having retraced Terry’s steps, they found he had lost his job and spoken with the ‘Brown Fox’ pub. They had a description of the bald-headed man that had taken him away that night.

From there they had found his gang and had since been searching for the murder weapon. It appeared they now had it. Once identified, they hoped to have all the evidence complete to lock the gang away for a long time. The body count was rising, and Terry had not been the first.

Relaxing and reflection

Putting her feet up on the settee, Marsha looked at Stella.

“Are you seeing Freddie tonight?”

“I’m not sure mum, I’ve been wondering, what sort of man thinks waving a machete is fun?”

“Oh love, put it down to computer games. I hope he’s learnt his lesson. Hopefully, if he finds a machete again, he will phone the police immediately.”

“What do I do mum?”

“See him again and take it slowly. Get to know him. Life is too short to live by what if’s. If he hadn’t found it, the gang would still be killing people. He’s a hero really.”

Stella thought about this.

Maybe, she would see him again. Give him the benefit of the doubt. They hadn’t been together long, and she didn’t really want things to finish before they had really started.

Losing Terry, they had learnt that life can be cut short at any time. It is important to live in the now. Both relieved that his killers had been found, they comforted each other that they were safe. They now knew why he had been killed and were reassured that they were not next.

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