Two New Zealand brothers who found an author and illustrator in the Shetland Islands raving and ranting returned the next day to find both the man and his wife stabbed to death.
Britain's Sunday Times newspaper has revealed a cover-up in the death of writer Harry Horse and his wife, Mandy, which was initially passed off as a suicide pact in a cottage at Papil, 25 minutes from Lerwick, on the Scottish island of Burra.
When the bodies were found in January last year, published reports suggested they had died in each other's arms after taking painkillers, and they were buried together.
But the two New Zealanders, whose names were not published by the Sunday Times, said Horse, 47, was roaming the house, proclaiming: "It's a wonderful night for a killing."
His wife was distressed, and did not want the friends to leave, the newspaper reported. At 9.40am the next day, January 10, the friends returned to retrieve an item of clothing, but on opening the front door they found the two bodies on Mandy's bed, with blood on the floor, windows and walls.
Horse had stabbed her 30 times with such ferocity the blade broke from the handle of the knife inside her body and he collected a second knife to continue the attack. Her arms were covered in defensive injuries sustained as she tried to fight him off.
Leaving her to bleed to death, Horse then killed their dog, a chihuahua Mandy liked to cuddle, and their cat before turning the knife on himself, slashing his arms and mutilating his genitals, as he stabbed himself 47 times.
Drugs paraphernalia was found at the cottage, and the Sunday Times reported that both Horse and his wife took Ecstasy and he was a habitual cannabis user.
Horse, who wrote and illustrated children's books as well as drawing cartoons, faced financial difficulties and Mandy, 39, suffered from multiple sclerosis and was in a wheelchair.
The brutal circumstances were never made public because the police and local procurator fiscal decided that a fatal accident inquiry was not in the public interest.
Horse, whose real name was Richard Horne, was best known for his children's book The Last Polar Bears and his work as a political cartoonist for newspapers. He and his wife moved to Shetland in 2004.