Halloween Hacker of Grays Hill
The conclusion to Wicked Halloween Haunts Still
Lyle Banks has been the groundskeeper at the cemetery for thirty-eight years. He does not have any friends and prefers the peace and quiet of the cemetery during the day. It is here where Ellen, his bride of just one month, was buried thirty years ago. Lyle keeps her grave well-groomed with fresh flowers every day, but, still, after so many years, she is not at peace.
It was on Grays Hill where Ellen was brutally murdered thirty years ago on a stormy Halloween night. The murderer was never found and the incident became a cold case until Sarah Mae was killed in the same area and in the same gruesome manner three decades later.
Both women were hacked to death with an ax.
Very strange, they each received forty whacks.
Each one counted by the county Warden,
who investigated Lizzie Borden.
Now, here we have our ex-marine, Blade, lying in wait at the cemetery for the murderer of his beloved Sarah Mae. It is Halloween night, one year after Sarah Mae was killed by a man dubbed Halloween Hacker. And Blade, with his razor-sharp machete, intends to give Halloween Hacker forty whacks to avenge the murder of Sarah Mae.
Confused yet? Let me explain the connections. You see, Blade is very adept at researching and figuring things out. He found that a man named Lyle, a drifter and handyman, was in love with Lizzie Borden. Forty times he asked Lizzie to marry him. And forty times Lizzie refused. She thought Lyle was a creep. Spurned and angry, Lyle took an ax and with forty whacks killed Lizzie’s mother and made it look like Lizzie was the murderer. She suffered greatly due to the investigation and trial that followed. She was acquitted, but, ostracized by all in the community. Meanwhile, Lyle had disappeared. Who killed Lizzie’s parents was never solved and it became a cold case.
A year later, Lyle married a lovely young woman named Ellen. He was very much in love with her but went insane when he found she had a lover. He killed Ellen in the same manner he did Lizzie’s parents – forty whacks with an ax. No one considered Lyle a suspect, and, because Ellen’s lover had disappeared, it was believed the lover was the killer. It became a cold case. Actually, the lover is buried under the coffin of an un-related person whose funeral and burial was held the day after Ellen’s burial – thanks to the cemetery groundskeeper, Lyle.
Blade had done heavy research and tied these cold cases together. Only one thing remained a puzzle. Why did Halloween Hacker kill Sarah Mae, who had no connection to Lizzie Borden or Ellen? Well, Blade found out when he dug deeper and saw a photograph of Ellen. He was stunned! Sarah Mae and Ellen looked so much alike they could have been identical twins! When Lyle, Halloween Hacker, saw Sarah Mae on a bus one night, he must have thought Ellen came back to haunt him. He became incensed and started stalking Sarah Mae then killed her. It was another cold case until Blade came along and tied all three cases together. Now, the time has come for Halloween Hacker to bear the punishment he so rightly deserves.
Blade had a feeling that Hacker would visit the cemetery on Halloween night, so he waited in a copse of trees near the grave of Lyle’s bride.
While Blade waits for Lyle to appear, he recalls the dreams he has had when Sarah Mae came to give messages about the killer. She does not visit often, for her spirit is still trapped in a whirlwind of horror, because of the way she died, and sorrow, for she loves and misses Blade so much. She longs for some peace and Blade has vowed to help her find it.
A full moon now shows bright and clear and Blade sees Lyle coming towards the grave. Lyle stops and speaks to the grave of his wife. “Well, Ellen my dear, I killed you once, I killed you twice. You should not have sent that Sarah Mae into my path last year. I had to kill her, too, because I thought she was you coming back to haunt me. I am getting quite used to killing women and find it rather exciting. It all started with Lizzie Borden, you know. I loved her and she denied me, so I killed her mother. Now, another lovely Halloween night is here and I must find another victim to add to my collection.”
Blade stepped out from behind a tree, his machete glinting in the moonlight. “Hacker! You ain’t going anywhere. You are going to die right here, in the same way you killed your wife and my Sarah Mae.”
Lyle froze, but only for a few seconds as he stared at Blade. Then he laughed, a loud, evil laugh. He raised the hand that held his ax and with lightening speed threw the ax, aiming for Blade’s head. Lyle was not prepared for his opponent’s even greater speed. Blade dropped into a squat, the ax flew above him and was embedded deep into a tree trunk. Blade pushed up with his strong legs, flew into the air, did a forward somersault, landed on his feet in front of Lyle and sliced Hacker’s ear off.
Hacker pulled a knife from his belt and Blade brought his machete swiftly down, cutting Hacker’s hand off. Lyle screamed with pain and rage, falling to his knees. With the sharp point of the machete drawing more blood under Lyle’s chin Blade said, “I could have easily decapitated you just now, Hacker, but, you have a lot more screaming to do before I finish with you.” He leaned down close to Hacker’s face and whispered harshly, “I will avenge my Sarah Mae!” He jerked the machete forward, slicing through Hacker’s chin then raised the machete high to strike again.
From behind him, a gravelly voice yelled out, “Drop it, Blade! Nice and easy, step back away from Hacker then drop that machete. I have my .45 and two AR15s with my deputies ready to fire at either or both of you!”
Blade recognized Sherrif Tate’s voice and did as he was told. Blade and Tate had worked together on tracking down Hacker. They had become good friends and respected each other, but, Blade knew Tate meant what he said.
When Blade dropped the machete, Hacker lunged, grabbed it with his left hand and raised it up. Three bullets hit him in the chest and the force knocked him to his back. His arm fell and the machete sliced through his throat, nearly decapitating him.
“Well, sorry to spoil your fun, Blade,” Tate holstered his .45. “Looks like we don’t need to check to see if Halloween Hacker is dead.” He put his hand on Blade’s shoulder. “I think you have avenged Sarah Mae, my friend.”
© 2018 Phyllis Doyle Burns