It dropped vertically, fast enough to almost look as if it was falling, uncannily like the swoop of a bird of prey, to be hovering directly above his head but slightly to one side. Still transfixed, he did not connect it with danger. Quickly it aligned itself with his shoulders. The worm drive expanded the diameter of the wire, making sure there was plenty of margin to pass over his head. No hesitation now, it dropped and the terrible chatter began. An insistent “clack clack clack” as the metal teeth pulled the wire. The worm drive doing its terrible work. It first jiggled itself to make sure that the wire was where it should be. There was a fleeting moment where he could have put his hands inside the wire, but it was simply too fast for him.
His neighbor, Elise Watts, chose this moment to exit her apartment and walk across the garden to the car park. She saw Geoffrey fall to the ground, for no apparent reason.He could not breathe. It was tight around his windpipe. He grabbed at the drone, trying to shake it off him. Trying to damage it, to just make it stop. Managing only to damage one rotor blade. One of four.
Then it was all over. The wire tightened, severing his windpipe, and a major artery. As Elise ran towards him, it spurted like a hose cut with a knife. A burst, then another. The drone having completed its mission let one end of the wire go. Flailing across the ground, struggling to gain altitude with only three rotors working it limped. In a matter of seconds it was out of sight.
She ran to his side. For a fleeting moment, she could see signs of life in his eyes. Trying to grab at his neck to stem the flow. So much blood. He looked as if he was about to say something, strained to hear. Then he was gone.