The Peep Sight – Mill Point Road, South Perth, 6151.

I am re-posting this, as it is pivotal to my previous four posts regarding ‘Reciprocity of the Father.’

As such, here is either the final chapter, or the preface, of a book I have on the go for sometime. It is still rather ‘clunky’, but easily enough read.  See how you go.

However, if you aren’t in the mood for a read, click the picture above, a Neil Young music clip follows.

The Peep Sight

Tool box open, he extracted the specific tools, then open his loose item tool box and removed all else required, placing the lot into a large green bin bag.  This was the wrapped with infinite care into his forty something year old hootchie.  Lastly, the hootchie went into the bottom of his croquet bag.  Mallets and balls put in Tetris like after it.  From there he placed the whole lot onto the back seat of his Audi, shut the door, and went inside to make a cup of tea, read the paper, and wait for his Grandchildren to arrive.

In a house three suburbs away, something similar was happening.  The required bits and pieces and tools of his now long retired trade were being carefully placed into a khaki kit bag that had see quite a few years, and a lot of better days.  He tied at the top as per instruction, and placed it just inside the front door.  Without a second thought, he then strolled into the bathroom, showered, shaved, and dressed.  On completion he called down the passage to his wife, and not unkindly bellowed “I’m ready to go dear.  Let’s go.”  To which he opened the front door for his wife of thirty seven years, then collected his kit bag, and placed it into the boot of his pride and joy.  A minute later the matt black 1968 Mustang roared into life, and off they went.  Ten minutes later, his wife now dropped off at her mothers, he went to work.

Professionals, true professionals, are never late.  They are never half prepared.  Generally they need not even speak when dealing with others like themselves in their trade.  The job they have before them is undertaken with the minimum of fuss, and inspires no emotion.  Emotion is for the ill prepared and the incompetent.  It is the result that counts.

The two men that were now pulling away from the curb in a late model Landrover Defender had just finished attaching the work tool filled trailer to the vehicle.  They chatted amiably as anyone does when on the way to work. No need to talk over the job, they are already as efficient and effective as any professional can be.  Why waste the breath?  Other tool bags and equipment had been neatly stowed in the rear of the vehicle between a blue 5ltr water bottle, and an Engel car fridge.

In perfect synchronisation each of the three vehicles pulled up and stopped at their individual workplaces.  All occupants exiting their vehicles grabbed their tool kits, and unhurriedly got on with it.  Work benches and tools were carefully put together; deft fingers belonging to hands that knew each piece of kit so intimately that thought was not required in the construction.

The wet saw was removed from the trailer behind the Landrover, placed on the verge.  Water was attached and the generator started.  Pavers were stacked beside it, and one of the men started marking them for cutting.  The other was putting down the backseats of the vehicle, and beginning to arrange the water bottle, a jerry can, the Engel, and one or two other implements strategically set in the rear of the vehicle.  When he had finished a narrow path formed from the now folded down back seats, creating a gap leading to the space now formed by the slightly open back door.  Once complete, he did the same with the cement mixer and the wheel barrow on the trailer.  Moving them, aligning them; all done unhurriedly, and without fuss.  The gaps made between the gear in the trailer, and the bits and pieces in the rear of the vehicle, and the gap formed by the open door were all perfectly positioned.

Exactly twenty metre’s downhill from the rear of the trailer, running parallel to the to a high brick garden fence, a large green skip bin filled the verge, covering one third of the footpath, unwittingly creating a narrow walk way of approximately five metres in length, roughly one in width.  The Audi driver was now hobbling up the hill between them, his walking stick taking his weight, the incline slowing him.  He stopped at the end of the narrow passage, stepped off the footpath, onto the verge, and leant against the edge of the large rectangular bin to regain his breath.

It was 9 o’clock, their routine Saturday morning run around the bridges complete, a pair of fashionably attired joggers entered a cafe in South Perth near the river, exactly as they had every Saturday for the last three years.  The staff, familiar with the pair and their routine had ensured the usual table was waiting for them.  No order was required, and within a minute two plates baring Eggs Benedict were placed politely in front of them.  A pot of tea with one cup appeared as if by magic next, to be finally joined by a large flat white coffee and two orange juices over ice.

He was 34, and had finished his Articles four years prior. Now profession had him practicing Criminal Law as a Barrister.  She, 32, was Doctor of Medicine; training as a Senior Registrar in Psychiatry, with leanings toward Forensic Psychiatry.  She would complete her studies in seven weeks time.  

By the time they had finished eating; payment for the meal had been made via credit card.  This had been produced from a small slim leather wallet, extracted rabbit like from a hat from somewhere about his body.

Fast broken, the pair left without a word, striding purposely out of the little cafe, turning south toward a corner hotel, east on reaching it, and began a slow jog up a hill bordering the Perth Zoo.  She led, knowing his focus was on her small neat buttocks, passing an awkwardly parked Mustang as she smiled at the thought.  There was a green skip bin taking up the verge and part of the foot path just ahead of her.  This irritated her.  This was change; changes to routine irritated her immensely.

Seated in the rear seat of the immaculate old Ford, he gazed down through the peep sight of an old .303 Lee-Enfield rifle.  A relic of the Second World War left, to him by his now dead father; a tool in his hands and nothing more.

He was seated in the rear right seat, the rifle extending diagonally across the interior of the vehicle.  The end of the barrel stopping 15cm from the 3cm gap formed between the glass and window frame of the almost wound up passenger window.

A deafening high pitched squeal cracked the morning, as someone started cutting pavers not more than forty metre’s away.  This irritated her further.

At exactly the same moment as the cacophony tore into the otherwise quiet morning, a man jogging behind a petite woman ran between the skip and the fence.  A man with a walking stick stepped in toward the gap at the other end, and fell. He gave the impression of one in pain, pathetically grasping his chest; eye’s screwed shut, anguish written across his creased and weathered face. 

The uninhibited view across the open sights of his old, and similarly inherited .303, filled with petite female jogger.  He heard the saw stop and start twice.

Within one hundredth of a second of each other, two hair triggers had the minimum amount of pressure applied, sounding as one. The blast greatly diminished by the deafening saw.

Red mist clouded from the chests of the joggers.

The chap on the ground with the walking stick was on his feet, moving with the vitality of a man dramatically younger than the one so recently held in throes of cardiac failure.

He walked over to the pair, his stick now in two, transforming into two .303 loaded smokies, half in either hand. 

The girl was the first encountered.  He turned her head to the side with his boot and pressed the end of the smoky firmly against her temple.  He applied enough pressure for the bullet to react to its firing pin; there was a muffled bang, and he moved to the male on the ground behind, repeating the process.  Job complete, he screwed the two pieces back together, and strolled back around the industrial bin.  The action of lifting a wooden pallet, covering the narrow space between bin and wall, was mirrored at the other by the man recently seated in a Mustang.  The pair then lifted yellow ‘A’ framed ‘Detour’ signs onto the footpath, placing them upon the foot path, a metre distant from the pallets.  A sheet of old canvas was thrown over the bodies.

The trailer was neatly loaded, and the men left.

By Saturday night –

One of the men had played an above average game of croquet, and was enjoying a beer with his son.

One of the men managed a smile for his aged mother in law.

One of the men took his sister out for lunch at ‘The Secret Garden’ on Angelo Street.

One of the men mowed his lawn, and spent the rest of the day watching the football.

The two bodies had been found by three inquisitive ten year old boys in search of wet cement, and the hope of scrawling their names within it at about two that afternoon.

That evening, unknown to the rest of the world, the bodies of the worst serial killers in Australia’s short history, lay unidentified in a Perth morgue fridge.  It would be ten days before the identity of the pair would be established.

Western Australian Police would investigate the double murder for the following four and a half years.  Forensic pathology would tell them that the pair had been shot from opposite angle’s, through the chest, and both through the side of the head at very close range. 

The four bullets that were extracted from the Mill Point Road footpath and residential garden wall were all identified as the same calibre, .303.  Yet further investigation proved that whilst the same calibre, each bullet had been fired from different firearm’s. Two being identified as rifles, fired over a relatively short distance.  The other two bullets, whilst again having been fired from different weapons, remained a mystery as to the design of firearm used at point blank range. Speculation, however, was that the head shots most likely came from either a pair of cut down rifles, or, by a pair of ‘smokies’ as used by fishermen.  A ‘smokie’ is essentially bullet on the end of a stick, encased in a barrel of slightly greater length than the bullet it holds. The firing mechanism is created by placing the barrel against a stationery object, exerting force toward it, bringing the firing pin into contact with the base of the bullet, causing it to fire.

The serial killings plaguing Perth ceased. The murderer or murderer’s never found.

The ‘Mill Point Murders’ were never solved.

Four men ran into each other sporadically at the ANZAC Day parade in Perth, never speaking of the lives laid to waste that particular Saturday morning. 

As with all life, over time they passed quietly away.  Head stones declared them fathers, husbands, and ‘dearly beloved’.  At their separate wakes, people spoke of them as Vietnam Veterans, but in a manner of mostly general ignorance. 

 

Fin.

 Click the picture for Neil Youngs 1971 BBC studio’s version of ‘Heart of Gold.’

Hamish

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