11 Apr Dumpster RabbittZ – Part Seven
Dumpster RabbittZ – Part Seven
Bryan Higby and Ricky D. Snyder
Detective Moxley had seen the blood and carnage on Main and Cascade. The eye witnesses, those who were still alive said that they saw what looked like rabbit monsters. They described the attackers as looking like humans but with freakish rabbit features, glowing red eyes and long razor-sharp teeth. One witness even said he saw a cotton tail protruding from the back of one uniformed attacker.
“Uniform?” Moxley had asked one witness in a dingy apartment on Cascade Ave.
“Yeah, there were two of them both dressed in animal control uniforms. They seemed not to like each other because they fought for a bit and then scattered down the alley in separate directions,” this witness, guy named Pedro Alverez, said.
Moxley had taken the statements himself. Ripley, Brown. Perez and Hamilton had disappeared along with two plain clothed detectives, Martin Tibbs, and Sam Sylvester had also gone missing after visiting the Ken Kennedy crime scene out at the old CarLowDen Golf Course. And then there were the animal control guys to consider, as well as the Pedro Alverez statement that he saw two human rabbit monsters in animal control outfits. Jesus Christ this whole thing was like some cheesy B grade horror flick. Was it possible that what John Friend and Rob Wash said was correct? A demented rabbit infecting his town? The connecting link to these stories was the CarLowDen Golf Course.
Now Moxley sat at the bedside of Officer Maria Perez. She was unconscious. Doctors said Moxley had to be patient. Wait it out. Matthew Hamilton, Perez’s partner was dead with six slugs in his face, or what was left of his face. After Perez was finished firing into Hamilton’s head with her service revolver there was nothing left except finger prints and Hamilton’s uniform name tag to identify the body. The Lewis County DA was already screaming about sex crimes in the CarLowDen Police Station. Both Perez and Hamilton had exchanged semen earlier that evening the DA had toxicological tests to prove it. Word travelled fast about the sex relationship between Perez and her partner. The detective figured his dispatcher Kelly had something to do with that news spreading so fast. Moxley sat back in the uncomfortable plastic seat next to Perez’s bed when he heard a knock on the door from Sergeant Mullinex, New York State Troopers. The asshole had finally arrived in town.
“Detective Moxley,” Sergeant Mullinex asked, leaning into the door.
He was a big bastard of a cop; barrel chest did not do his description justice. This guy was a mountain. Skin so weather beaten it was as red as the backdrop of the American flag. His crew cut was chiseled into a block on his thick skull. His blue eyes pierced Moxley’s red rimmed brown ones.
“Yes,” Moxley said, shaking the sergeant’s thick meaty paw.
“Sorry to hear about your…” he started to say and then motioned to the comatose Officer Perez.
“Yeah, it’s been a shit storm ever since the crime scene out at the CarLowDen Golf Course yesterday. I’ve got one dead officer, one in a coma, and two missing uniforms and two detectives all in twenty-four hours,” Moxley said, thinking that when he said it out loud it sounded pretty fucking horrible.
Sergeant Mullinex did not respond with any criticism.
“Thought CarLowDen was a quiet little community, never more than an occasional DUI. Any idea who opened the box?”
“The box?” Moxley asked.
“Pandora’s Box. Some dimwit musta broke the lock and opened that box, or someone dialed up the zip code to Hell. I’ve spoken to my Captain. He has authorized several of our troopers to help work this case since your station is quickly becoming understaffed,” Mullinex said, placing his hat back on. “I’ll be stopping by the station when I leave here. My men will arrive soon. We’ll have this thing wrapped up in…how long did you say it’s been since hell broke loose?”
“Twenty-four hours,” Moxley said, hearing the sarcasm in his own voice creep in.
Moxley was starting to hear that jack-off tone of a high school quarter back, or Marine—Semper Fi! Hoorah!—coming from Mullinex. He meant to salute the asshole but decided he was too fucking exhausted to battle the guy. Besides Mullinex was offering his help. Moxley knew that his station needed the troopers like mad.
“We’ll have it tied up in twelve,” Mullinex said, exiting the hospital room.
Moxley heard the State Trooper speaking to his fellow officers in the shoulder CB system. As Mullinex’s voice dimmed and vanished Moxley looked back at Officer Perez. So much potential with this cadet. Maria Perez was top of her class at the academy, but killing her partner at point blank range had destroyed all of that. And then there was the issue with the report to dispatch that there was a 10-91L. What had Kelly said? Moxley removed his notebook and reviewed his notes.
There was no dumpster present at the golf course when Moxley arrived to drop off his deputies, or when the meat wagon was there to pick them up. Something large had dented the side of their cruiser though. Something with green paint.
It was still dark outside. He stood up and headed for the door when he heard Officer Perez’s voice.
“No, Matt…go, dumpster…dumpster.” She was crying in her sleep.
The first witness to report rabbit attacks was John Friend. Rob Wash, who had been at The Bateman the previous night had claimed not to have seen anything, nor had DJ Randy Bliss, but John Friend wrote a damned detailed novel with his witness statement.
Moxley exited Perez’s room and walked down the hallway to a second room. Bonnie Tyler, wife of the now missing Norman Tyler, barman at Marty’s Pub, sat in her bed flipping through the channels of the television. The zombified expression on her face set Moxley on edge. The lights were off in the room. Only the reflection of the television tube illuminated the hospital room.
“Mrs. Tyler…” Moxley reached out to switch on the room lights.
“DON’T! They might see,” Bonnie whispered.
Her voice was scratchy and she looked as though she had been crying. All day, he suspected.
Moxley let the lights be as he walked across the room and stood next to Bonnie’s bed. She never looked at him, just kept flipping through the stations as if searching for normal logic to her illogical life.
“Mrs. Tyler, I was wondering if maybe you felt well enough to speak with me about the attack at your apartment this morning,” Moxley said.
Just more flipping.
“Mrs. Tyler, you said a second ago about them seeing. Who them? Rob Wash, John Friend and Randy Bliss. The guys firing guns at your apartment today? Are they the them you’re talking about?”
Her eyes flicked to the detective when he mentioned Randy, John, and Rob.
“Are they here?”
The fear in her voice said it all for Moxley. This woman was terrified of these goons.
“No, you’re safe. Two of them are locked up at the station…”
“I want them here! I want them HERE!!!” She screamed reaching for her IV, knocking the remote onto the floor.
“I don’t understand. You want them here? Why? I thought they were…”
“They saved my life…they saved my life,” Bonnie blubbered as the lights flicked on behind them.
A duty nurse and the attending doctor entered in a rush. They saw Bonnie trying to pull out her IV in a frantic state. Moxley saw the terror in Bonnie’s eyes when the lights turned on. He ran across the room and switched off the fluorescents.
“Turn those back on,” the doctor said.
“The light scares her doctor,” Moxley tried to sound reasonable but the doctor pushed past him and tried reaching for the light switch when Moxley stopped him. “Unless you want your patient to explode in hysterics, I suggest you keep those overheads off for now.”
The doctor looked angrily at the cop.
“Doctor, she’s quieting down,” the nurse said.
The doctor gave the detective another nasty look and then returned to his patient. Moxley looked back once more at Bonnie Tyler being given a sedative. She said that Friend, Wash, and Bliss had helped her, even saved her life. Moxley wasn’t sure where Randy Bliss was now but he knew where the others were, locked up at the station. He headed out of Bonnie Tyler’s hospital room in a sprint.
* * *
Randy’s El Camino had just rolled to a stop in the visitor’s parking lot at the CarLowDen Police Station. The cold March rain still pelted the windshield. His two new friends were rotting away inside that place now. Randy was going to have to turn up the charm to get them released. Maybe he could sign some release papers promising that John and Rob wouldn’t leave town. Randy had used his savings to buy his own parole, he had nothing left.
Removing the car keys, he exited the El Camino and sprinted to the front of the station. The sound of police cruiser sirens echoed in the night.
Inside the station house the place was crazy. Uniformed cops were moving about strapping on SWAT gear. Other cops and reception were fielding nonstop calls. Randy thought for a small town like CarLowDen this place looked more like Detroit. He moved through the lobby as more cops entered and exited the building. Cruisers were speeding out of the parking lot. He saw the chubby blonde receptionist scribbling furiously on a legal pad, names, addresses, and telephone numbers. Three dispatchers were running the numbers. Taking notes and directing what uniformed teams they had to direct. Everyone was in panic mode. Randy wasn’t sure who he should speak with regarding his friends Rob and John.
“Excuse me, Ms.,” Randy said leaning into the receptionist.
She held up one plump finger as she continued to scribble. He wasn’t going to get anywhere in this chaos.
“Shit,” he said as he turned to leave.
“Bliss?” Detective Moxley was entering the station soaked by that night’s heavy rains. His long brown trench coat dripped on the tiled lobby floor.
“Detective? Great! I wanted to see about…”
“Save it. Follow me,” Moxley said walking past the chaos.
He knocked on the bullet proof glassed-in reception door. The blonde receptionist hit a button and the door buzzed open. Randy followed close behind him.
* * *
Downstairs in the holding cells Rob and I had pretty much given up on DJ Randy Bliss springing us from our prison. Actually, Rob had given up on Ran long before me. It kills me to admit this but I had real doubts about my convictions that Ran would return like a cowboy in a white hat breaking us out of this jail. When the door at the end of the holding cell buzzed, we glanced down the hallway to see Detective Moxley and Randy Bliss, about two inches shorter, following close behind. Rob and I had heard plenty of activity upstairs but since there were no windows in the basement we couldn’t tell what kind of chaos was going down.
“Ran! I knew you’d break us out…” I started to say but Moxley cut me off.
“Save the celebratory shit for when this case is closed. I’m letting you out on a temporary basis. If you guys can help me stop this…dumpster rabbit outbreak from spreading, keep it contained inside our town limits, we’ll see about letting you out for good,” Moxley said as he unlocked the cell doors.
“Thanks anyway Ran,” I said shaking Randy’s hand.
“John, I had nothing to do with this, it was all the detective’s generosity,” Randy said, red-faced.
He looked ashamed but we didn’t have the time to ask why. Rob Wash stepped free from his cell and rubbed his wrists unconsciously as if we had been handcuffed the whole time. He looked at the detective for a moment. Rob and Moxley were about the same height but Rob outweighed the cop by about fifty pounds.
“What we doing?” Rob asked.
“You guys were the first ones to report of these dumpster rabbit things. I thought that maybe there was something you could tell me that might help us track these things down,” Moxley said.
“Obviously Ken Kennedy was their first vic…so assuming this crazy shit all started out at the CarLowDen Golf Course I’d say that’s our first stop,” Rob said.
“We got troopers on their way out there now,” Moxley said.
He had turned around and started back toward the exit. We followed as Rob grabbed the cop’s arm and swung him around.
“You gotta call them boys off. They don’t know what they’re dealing with. We seen a couple of your uniforms transformed into a kind of wererabbit human hybrid thing. If those troopers go out to the golf course without full knowledge of what they’re getting into you might as well cough more cops up to rabbit stew,” Rob said.
We all watched the expression on Moxley’s face change from anger at being grabbed to anger at a civilian telling a decorated detective his business. Moxley was smart enough to listen though.
“Okay oh-wise-ass great one, what do you know that the rest of us don’t?”
Rob let go of Moxley’s arm and blushed, shrugging. After an uncomfortable moment of silence, the detective looked at Ran and me.
“You guys know anything else that can help us?”
And then something occurred to me. I saw flashes of the Oldsmobile, driven by Jeffrey Rice, speeding past Rob’s Chevy out on Whitaker Road.
“No, but I think I know someone who does,” I said, walking past the others as we exited the holding room.
* * *
Sergeant Mullinex and his group of State Troopers rolled down Whitaker Road pulling into the parking lot of the CarLowDen Golf Course like Teddy Roosevelt’s Rough Riders. The ice-cold rain had stopped but the temperature had dropped about twenty degrees and a thick coating of ice started to solidify on the grass and the tree branches. The first SUV cruiser stopped and the three others fanned out on other side of it. Red and blue police lights flashed across the night. Doors opened and large thick chested state troopers exited those cruisers looking like ancient titans. Riot shotguns and service revolvers were unstrapped.
“Okay men. We have a definite 10-91L with a possible 187. That’s right men murder! To date we have lost track of four county boys and two animal control employees. They were last seen out here at this location. Now they have vanished. The first incident was the death of one Kenneth Kennedy found mutilated…” Mullinex paused for a minute, consulting notes on an iPad. “Half eaten alive, coroner says.”
The cops all stood around listening. Not one flinched at the description of Ken Kennedy’s death.
“That means we may have several animals on the loose out here. Do not hesitate to use force if you see something hostile. If you see something hostile, shoot,” Mullinex said, sliding the iPad into his rain coat. “You know your teams. Two men teams. Roswell, you and Tynes take the grounds. Head north through the trees. Becker and Nix south. Tibbs, you and I take the clubhouse going in the front. Zehr and Mills go around back. Make sure as you move, if you hear anything call out the signal. We don’t want any dead troopers on our watch. Let’s clean this up,” Mullinex removed his flashlight from the belt loop and flicked it on as he and Tibbs walked to the clubhouse. The other teams fanned out in the darkness.
Troopers Tynes and Roswell, carrying riot shotguns with flashlights attached to the ends of the barrels, moved into the trees. Not long after they passed through the line of Pine trees, Tynes saw the large steel object.
“What is that?” Roswell shined his flashlight across the green dented object.
“Dumpster,” Tynes said looking around. “What the hell’s a dumpster doing out here on the green?”
“This whole place is a ghost town. Who gives a fuck. Keep an eye out for rabid animals…bears maybe.”
“Bears?” Tynes sounded frightened.
“Yeah and those black bears are mean bastards too. Seen a five hundred pounder eat the head off a cow out at Zehr’s parents farm when we were teens,” Roswell said laughing.
Tynes glanced at his partner to see if he was kidding.
“No kidding, man. They are like fucking…”
That’s when Miles and Bernie appeared and ripped Trooper Tynes head off his shoulders. Roswell watched stunned as the former animal control employees fought over the blood spraying out of the corpse. Miles and Bernie, who had hated one another in life wrestled over Trooper Tynes’s corpse. Hot blood drenched the two human rabbit hybrids. Roswell did not hesitate, he fired several rounds of his riot shotgun at the two creatures. Poor Miles got the worst of it. As the twelve-gauge slugs struck Miles it ripped off most of his head. The tangled rabbit ears that had sprouted on his head were torn off with the slugs. What was left of his jaws, which were now large and vicious, opened wide and clamped down as the teeth shattered and body fell.
Bernie glanced up in fear.
He saw Roswell pumping more slugs into the shotgun readying it to kill him and then Bernie snarled and leapt back into the dumpster. Trooper Roswell fired off four more shots at the fleeing creature as Bernie leapt into the dumpster and disappeared. Roswell fired four more slugs into the dumpster as the structure echoed empty so did the shotgun. The trooper reloaded and then approached the dumpster.
“This is Trooper Roswell. Be advised we have a 187. This was not an animal attack. It was a human…something,” Roswell said. He was speaking into his shoulder CB.
“Copy that Roswell. Where are you?”
“I’m on the north end of the green next to the dumpster. Who…or, whatever that guy was that attacked us is hiding inside the dumpster. I’m proceeding forward now,” Roswell said.
“Don’t break radio contact. Report everything,” Sergeant Mullinex said.
“Roger that sir. Moving forward now.”
Meanwhile Sergeant Mullinex and Tibbs were standing just inside the clubhouse doors, shining their flashlight beams across the area.
“Approaching the dumpster now…opening the dumpster lid…”
Mullinex and Tibbs listened intently.
“Oh…my…GOD!” Roswell screamed and the CB connection broke off.
“Move,” Mullinex shouted, as he and Trooper Tibbs sprinted from inside the clubhouse outside and around to the northern part of the golf course.
Mullinex pulled his weapon and fired at a tall silhouetted figure a few feet away. A second later Tibbs flashed his light beam on what remained of the rusted dinosaur from the mini golf area of the green.
“Shit,” Mullinex said. He was shaking.
“Nice shooting sir. Took the head clear off,” Trooper Tibbs laughed as something leapt at him knocking him to the ground. His shotgun flew into the weeds.
“Tibbs?” Mullinex shouted.
His officer was on the ground. He flashed his light beam on him and the first thing Mullinex saw was an animal control uniform drenched in blood. The next thing he saw were dozens of mutated looking rabbits, some of them white, others brown, but all of them sick and twisted looking. He saw the long dagger like fangs, the glowing pinkish red eyes.
“What the fuck?”
Grabbing his shoulder radio, Sergeant Mullinex shouted for backup.
“All units…all units converge on the CarLowDen Golf Course. We have mutant vermin human’s infected with something roaming the grounds. All units…”
* * *
We were outside the CarLowDen Police Station when Detective Moxley received the call from dispatch.
“Detective, there was an S.O.S. just received from Sergeant Mullinex and his troopers out at the CarLowDen Golf Course. He was calling for all units. I put in a call to Lewis County, Jefferson, and St. Lawrence counties to send all their troopers…”
“Good idea Kelly. I’m on my way. Send all available officers, those here and off duty. Everyone must report to duty, got it? Everyone! Call Chief Hall and let him know what’s happening…”
“But the chief is up at the lake sir…”
“I couldn’t give a fuck if he’s at Disneyland. Get his ass down here now, out!”
Mullinex killed the line. Rob, Randy, and I just stood in silence for a second.
“Whoever you got to see about this crazy shit. Get there and if you have any secrets about ending this dumpster rabbit infestation get back here like yesterday,” Mullinex was already sprinting away from them. “I mean YESTERDAY!”
We watched the grumpy cop slide into his cruiser and speed off.
“So, who is this person you think might know what’s going down?” Rob asked.
“Jeffrey Rice,” I said.
“The reporter?” Randy asked surprised.
“Yeah, he lives in DenMark…about thirty miles north. We better get a move on,” I said.
To be continued…
About Bryan Higby
Bryan Higby is the writer that Amazon bestselling author Joe Konrath said: “Bryan is easily one of the most prolific and enthusiastic authors I’ve ever run into. He writes with unabashed exuberance. If you missed the link above, I encourage you to check out some of his stuff here.” http://thelatlateshow.com/ (Podcast Link)
And New York Times bestselling author of the Wool Science Fiction saga, Hugh Howey said: “Hey Bryan, congrats on your success thus far. Sounds like you’re doing it right. Took me years to get where you are right now, so you’re on a good pace. And these covers rock. Congrats on those.”
New York Literary critic Robert Plyler compared Higby’s first novel, The Diary of a Logos, to the works of James Joyce, Franz Kafka, and Mickey Spillane.
Bryan also writes, directs, and co-produces the podcast The Lat Late Show with his longtime collaborator Rick Snyder. You can check out this fictional podcast here:
Higby lives with his wife and three kids in Central New York.
Amazon link: https://www.amazon.com/Bryan-Higby/e/B00CWEFNVS
About Rick Snyder
Rick Snyder is the co-author of the critically acclaimed Gonzo Pulp Horror series The DenMark Chronicles. Snyder is also a filmmaker and musician. He is also the co-creator and producer with Higby for The Lat Late Show podcast and the DenMark Chronicles podcast. You can find their links here: