The beautiful Amazon Rainforest
The birds were singing and the breeze was blowing through the trees, the crocodiles were sat in the river. Sounds of the Amazon Rainforest were all around us. I am Matt, myself and my friend Billy have always wanted to travel, to see the world. With a keen interest in rainforests, we were now exploring. It had been an interesting expedition up till now. We had planned a quiet trip, we had our notebooks and had worked out our route.
Taking the helicopter from the city airport we had both felt the trepidation as we saw the river below us. Had we known what was ahead of us, we would have been too scared to leave our homes. Walking along the banks of the river we became aware that we were not alone. There were plenty of wild creatures but these were human voices.
The men were talking in hushed tones. We now strained to hear them.
“Where we putting her?”
“Wouldn’t ‘ere be a good place? Forever with the crocs in the rainforest.” His friend laughed nastily.
They proceeded to dig a hole, then we watched them throw her into it. We both stood frozen, not sure what to do now. My heart was racing so fast that I felt sick. Who was the dead woman? What was going on here?
* * * *
Crime and greed, the two go together. So, what had happened? Running a crime syndicate required muscle and control. Those who didn’t obey were dealt with severely. On this day mad George had been watching creepy Caroline. Her actions did not seem to match her intentions. He knew that if something was not done soon they risked losing everything.
Caroline had always been an attractive woman and had always got what she wanted. Always trusting her own abilities, she never imagined that George would turn against her. He was supposed to love her. This day had been unexpected, promises of a romantic holiday had ended now in the Amazon Rainforest.
She knew something was wrong when they had got in a helicopter from the airport. Then meeting Wild Roger, she had started to feel dread. Their first night there in the stinky smelly hut had been hell, no washing or toilet facilities, this was certainly not a romantic holiday. Catching the two men discussing the cash had been her final downfall. She hadn’t noticed the dagger until it was in Roger’s hand and pressed up against her chest.
Spending the rest of the day bound and gagged, trapped in her own misery, in the heat of the rainforest in her toilet stained trousers, she knew this was the end. The men wanted the money for themselves. She had sat wondering if George might turn on Roger. Hoping that maybe he would save her, but also knowing that was unlikely.
If Creepy Caroline had been aware of the two explorers she might have tried making a noise, but she sat quietly. Imagining an empty desolate forest, what really was the point in trying to make noise? Especially with the gag in her mouth. Sitting plotting her revenge on Wild Roger, she would need to somehow get the dagger of him. She could see the shock on his face as she got the better of him.
The men return
After sitting alone all day, they now returned. Straining against the gag, Roger now took it off her. Staring into his cold blue eyes, she could see the meanness and evil, maybe even the face of a psycho. Looking up she looked at George and pleaded and stammered,
“Please, can we go home now?” he stood quietly looking at her. He knew she would do or say anything to get out of this, she could not be trusted.
They could have been together if it wasn’t for the sake of Roger and a few million pounds. However, how could anyone really love this scheming manipulative bitch? He thought of the people she had hurt and now saw her on the floor, vulnerable and smelling of her own stale urine. Searching in his pocket he found his small handgun. Wouldn’t take much to blow her head off. Maybe later he would do the same to Roger. The money would then be all his.
Thinking it through again, he knew he had his chance. She still trusted him, so would not expect this he thought. Putting his hand around the metal, he felt for the trigger. Already loaded he would just need to point and fire. Shaking now he found himself doing it. A romantic liaison had turned into ‘Murder in the rainforest?’ It took one sudden sweep from his pocket to pulling the trigger. He felt the gun ricochet and saw her shock as she went from conscious to dead.
“Whew, good one mate. Didn’t think you had that in you.”
“No neither did I.” Stood in shock, he had actually killed someone. He had killed the woman who two days ago he had discussed a romantic break with. What sort of person was he? He didn’t know.
* * * *
It was now late afternoon, we had hoped the men had gone. Though we hadn’t heard a helicopter, we had decided that they must have caught it a little way away. We had not lit a fire this evening because if the men were still around we did not want to alert them. We had been talking quietly, both thinking of stopping our adventure early. It was Monday today, we had been here since Saturday. Due to being collected the following Saturday we now wondered whether to light a flare in hope of going home early.
We had come to explore the rainforest though, and if the gangsters really had gone, then one dead woman shouldn’t stop our fun. Kidding ourselves that all was okay, the sudden feeling of cold metal on my neck made my stomach turn over. I’m sure my heart stopped beating through fear. As the man pulled me up I grabbed my backpack. Thankfully the man was too stupid to question this. Looking over at Billy, I could see that he was being dragged along too,
“Where you taking us?” I asked.
“Somewhere you can’t talk,” said the cruel tall looking man. Stumbling through the forest, this really was it. I could see that Billy was scared too. He hadn’t said a word, but I could hear him whimpering. I thought about the flare, I just needed to set if off and try and get help.
We reached the little hut in the rainforest and were pushed inside. Straight away we could smell urine and the dark mustiness. Cobwebs and scary giant spiders.
“What we doing with them?” said the shorter weasley looking man.
“Tie ‘em up, they mighta seen something. We need time to getaway. They can rot here, no one will know where they are.” His friend laughed an evil cackling roar.
We allowed ourselves to be tied, as long as I still had my backpack I knew we would be fine. I had dropped it in the dank corner, hoping the men would forget about it. All they seemed concerned with was binding and gagging us.
“Right come on man, don’t want more problems.” Said the tall cruel-looking man. Giving us both a quick kick in the shins and chest they now left.
The ropes were tight and the gag tasted disgusting. I wondered if mine had previously been in the ladies mouth and shuddered. Now wriggling across the room as best I could, I eventually reached my backpack. Manipulating it with my head, I managed to turn it over and relieved when it’s contents spilled over the floor.
Hands tied behind me I now wriggled around to find my knife. Feeling for it I was glad when the sharp blade touched my hand. I had seen this in films, I now had to somehow cut through the rope without cutting my wrists. Working at the rope I managed to loosen it a little which enabled me to get the sharp blade to cut through the knots binding me. Now free I pulled out my gag and cut through the rope around my feet. I then helped Billy and we were now free.
“Matt, what now? What if they come back?
“We need to get out of here and then set off the flare. We need to get away from this hut and report what we have seen and heard”.
“Why didn’t those men kill us, Matt?
“Don’t know mate, but seriously we just need to get away from here”.
Limping a little, feeling the wounds on our legs and wrists we walked away from the hut back in the rainforest. Hoping that we were not about to walk into the men. Hearing a helicopter we now hid back in the trees, not wanting to be seen. It was not one we recognised from the Manaus City. There was no company name emblazoned down the side. These men must have had a third accomplice and why come to the Amazon Rainforest with their dirty deals.
Now watching them disappear into the distance, we waited till we could no longer see them. Unpacking my backpack again, I found my flare. We had abandoned our belongings, for now, we just needed to get help. Setting it off, we wondered how long we would have to wait. About an hour later we heard a rumble. Both of us felt a wave of relief when we recognised the city helicopter, with ‘Amazon Rainforest Choppers’ written down its side. Knowing that we were safe, we walked out into the clearing and explained to the pilot about the two men and the woman. He now talked into his radio.
A little while later we heard more helicopters. Black, blue and white this time, the Amazon Rainforest police. They took statements from both of us and wanted to know where the lady was buried. Nervously we led them to her shallow grave. Digging her up. she was recognised immediately. Caroline Waters, she’s wanted for quite a few crimes in these parts.
“Would you two mind accompanying us to the police station? We need you to identify the men who tied you up. We think you have come across a major crime syndicate here.”
“Yes, of course” I said.
“Can we please collect our belongings?” said Billy.
“Yes, Fred, could you go with the lads and help them. Meanwhile, we will send Caroline back to the city.”
Things went smoothly from here. Fred helped us to take down our campsite and we were soon at the Manaus City police station. The men were George Miller and Roger Willis, wanted for money laundering, burglary, assault, and fraud. It was a few weeks later that we heard that they had found George Miller, alone hiding in a dark hotel room. A few days later they had found Roger’s dead body with a bullet wound in his chest. There was no sign of their other accomplice who flew the helicopter, we wondered who he was and the police are still investigating.
Crime and greed
All because of greed a man and a woman are dead. If they had to commit the crime surely a few million was enough to split three ways. Billy and I would have been happy with one million as a reward. We were mentioned in the newspaper and awarded for our bravery. This was enough, it had been a terrifying ordeal and we were relieved that they had not killed us when they could have done.
We were lucky that they had not checked my backpack. The knife had cut our ropes and the flare had got us home sooner. So, where are we travelling to next? Certainly not to a rainforest, maybe we will find an empty bleak mountain to explore, surely we can’t find trouble there? Or can we?
Written for Write the Story – Writers Unite
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