Will your skin become a handbag after you die?
Benjamin sees himself as a great guy who employs various misfits at his remote family farm, but when his mother dies during a house fire, grief takes its toll on his mind. Strapped for cash, Benjamin starts a new, gruesomely profitable leather business with Tilly, an expert craft worker. The only hitch - where will they get the bodies from? Can they find people willing to sell their dead relatives' skin or will they need to take matters into their own hands?
If you like fantastic, gritty, dark crime that's not for the faint of heart then you will love Death Dolls. It is the third book in the hard boiled crime series, Newdon Killers, by Simon Farrant.
If you like gritty, dark crime, you won't want to miss out on 'Death Dolls' by Simon Farrant. Strapped for cash Benjamin starts a new business making leather handbags, except the leather is human skin… – Marissa Farrar
"Absolutely fabulous story, Simon Farrant is an excellent author who keeps you pinned to the edge of your seat."– Amazon Review
Benjamin sat with Lisa in the lounge at the farmyard. He took a sip of his coffee and sighed as he placed the red-hot drink back on a coaster.
'It's a shame that Mum didn't have a conversation with us about what she wants us to do with her ashes,' said Lisa. 'I know she had paid up for a funeral plan though.'
Worry lines creased her face, stress written in her eyes. Benjamin laughed with sadness, 'The funny thing is that I was talking to her the other week about an idea I had for a business, and she thought it was great.'
Lisa looked at him through tear-stained eyeliner, 'Do tell. I can't wait to hear this.' She sat forward on the edge of her chair, eager for something to cheer her up.
Benjamin shook his head, 'It sounds silly really. We were talking about one of her friends who died, and the family chucked her ashes overboard from a cruise near Denmark or somewhere random like that. So I said maybe I should take relatives up in a light aircraft, to scatter their loved one's ashes out over the sea.'
Lisa's eyes widened.
'Benji, that is inspired!' she exclaimed. 'We should do that. The cremation is next week, so how about the Monday afterwards?'
Benjamin smiled as though a huge weight had just been lifted from his shoulders. He sat back in his chair, 'I'll hire a plane. Two weeks is plenty of notice for one of the lads to lend me something. You haven't been up with me for a while either. It'll be good. I reckon we should fly out over Skegness; Mum loved going there for the market.'
He sent one of his friends a text.
Hi buddy, Any chance I can borrow your plane pls week on Monday for an hour or two?
Almost immediately, his phone pinged with a reply:
Yeah sure, I'll leave the keys in the control tower.
He smiled and looked up at Lisa, 'Bingo, make sure you bring a sick bag.'
Lisa threw a cushion at her brother, which he caught deftly, 'Shut up, Benji!'
They hadn't noticed Tilly had come in the door, but she cottoned on to the shortened version of his name and smirked.
'Hey Lisa, hi Benji!' she taunted slyly, and a cackle slipped from her lips.
Benjamin looked at his sister and shook his head, 'Oh my God, what have you done?'
Lisa couldn't help herself from laughing, 'Oh, Benjamin, you shouldn't mind it so much. It'd be one less stress for you.'
Benjamin didn't laugh though. He pointed at Tilly and swore, 'Never call me Benji again or you'll get the sack!'
Tilly stood open mouthed, and Lisa chuckled.
'Don't listen to him. He's always got his knickers in a knot over his name…God knows why.'
Benjamin half-heartedly held a hand up, 'Sorry, Tilly, it's just that I was teased at school about my name. People used to say that Ben is a dog's name. That's kinda stuck in my head.'
Lisa stood, 'I have to go now, speak soon, Benjamin.'
He walked over to his sister and kissed her on the cheek, 'Love you, sis.'
The allotted day came, and Lisa sat next to Benjamin in their borrowed plane. She gazed out of the window, enjoying watching the countryside slide by under the wing. There were a few clouds around, but not enough to spoil the flight. Before she knew it, Benjamin pointed out of the windscreen and said, 'Look, Lisa, there's the sea on the horizon. This is such a nice day for flying.'
Lisa couldn't resist clapping her hands in excitement, 'This is more fun than the big wheel. Shall I get the urn ready?'
Benjamin looked across at her through his Ray-Bans and simply nodded.
Lisa sighed as she looked at the urn and said, 'We love you, Mum. Hopefully, we'll meet again one day.'
Benjamin reached over and put a hand on her arm, smiling sympathetically. By now, they had reached the coast, and he banked the plane until they were following the coastline. Lisa prised the lid off the urn, slid open the window slot and held the lip up to the narrow gap. With a whisper of, 'We love you, Mum. Rest in peace,' Lisa tipped the urn and poured out the ash. The slipstream of the plane whipped the ashes away, and they gently rained down to the waves of the grey North Sea below.
She peered into the urn and, satisfied that it was now empty, replaced the lid and shuffled in her seat until she was comfortable again. The siblings looked at each other and Benjamin blew Lisa a kiss.
'I don't know about you, sis, but that felt right,' he admitted.
Lisa nodded thoughtfully, 'You know what? It was perfect. Mum would have loved what we did for her. I definitely think you should offer it as a service. I bet people would pay, like, three or four hundred pounds.'
Benjamin looked down at the countryside, smiling as they flew straight over a traffic jam caused by a slow-moving tractor. He replied, 'I have the space at the yard for a respectable quiet office. All I need is a computer, and maybe a little storage room in case anyone wants me to put their loved one's ashes to one side before the appointment to scatter them. Do you want to go into partnership, Lisa, and we can share the profits in memory of Mum?'
'Yeah, I'd love that. I'm sure Mum would too.'
Within six weeks, Benjamin had set up Ashes to Ashes Unique Dispersal. Lisa created the website, and they soon had bookings for relatives wishing to scatter the ashes of their loved one from a plane. Occasionally, relatives couldn't face it themselves, so Benjamin and Lisa did it for them. Either way, they always treated the ashes with utmost respect, as if it were their own relative.