The Sheriff startled when he heard a chastising tone as he hung up his cell phone.
“Really, Sheriff. I’d think someone of your position would be more careful in how they speak in public. Not that that kind of language is appropriate anywhere…”
The Sheriff scowled at the Pastor. “I don’t have time for your sermons right now, Sam. Now if you’ll excuse us.” The Sheriff decided it best to inform Aberly of what the doctor had shared once they got into the woods. The last thing he needed was the Pastor spreading things around that hadn’t as of yet been confirmed. “Wait! What’s going on with the boys? Where are you going? Everyone is wondering what is happening.”
The Sheriff inwardly sighed. “That’s what we’re investigating now. Please, for the time being, attend to your normal affairs and once we have some answers we will share them with everyone. If you need to focus on something, then say some prayers for those boys. They’re all in a bad way and can use some healing from above.” The Pastor nodded. “I will do that, Sheriff. I’ll also pray for God to forgive your foul language.” The Sheriff glared at the Pastor. “You do that. Now as I said, we’re in a bit of a hurry.”
Aberly widened his eyes as the Sheriff filled him in on the details of the boys’ return and the circumstances of their condition. “Lloyd must have brought them pretty far out if it took them three days to get back. Of course, the condition you said they were in, I suppose they weren’t exactly walking very fast…”
The Sheriff cut in. “They weren’t sure if Lloyd was truly dead or not. So, I suspect they were moving fairly quickly and sleeping lightly; at least Mike. Seems like he watched over the younger ones as they slept. Plus, we scoured those woods well, and you hunt out there all the time. Seems like if he were nearby, you would have run into his place at some point over the past five years.”
Aberly nodded. “Well, I hunt in about a twenty-mile radius of Land’s End. After that, it starts running into private property. Lloyd must have bought himself a place nearby after he left Land’s End when his brother married Angie. We hadn’t heard hide nor hair of him since. Apparently, he’s been keeping an eye on things. It’s the only way he could have been right there to take advantage of kidnapping the boys like that. Unless he was the one who set the whole thing up with the social worker. She did arrive out of the blue, all the sudden. Perhaps he planned on just stepping in and adopting them once the State took them away from Floyd.”
The Sheriff shrugged. “Who knows, but we better get moving instead of standing around conjecturing all day. I’ll grab a couple hounds while you gas up the ATV’s.” Aberly nodded again and went to prepare the vehicles while the sheriff went to the kennel for the dogs which they kept on hand for search and rescue and also just basic guard duty around town.