A dispute over goods valued at $200 led to a clandestine late night meeting at a gannet colony which exploded into violence and resulted in two Portland men suffering life-threatening injuries.
The Portland men aged in their 30s remain in the Warrnambool Base Hospital after suffering significant injuries.
One was bashed with an iron bar and received blows to his head and body resulting in extensive bruising and requiring stitches.
He is reported to be in a stable condition in intensive care.
The other man was allegedly run over by a vehicle and suffered stab wounds.
Detective Sergeant Jason von Tunk, of the Portland police crime investigation unit, said two people - a 22-year-old woman and a 29-year-old man - were interviewed by police on Wednesday and released without being charged.
The two men in the Warrnambool hospital are yet to be interviewed.
"Further inquiries are pending," Detective Sergeant von Tunk said.
It's understood that all four people were known to each other although the two couples have denied that.
The woman is in a relationship with a man but there is conjecture she may have previously been involved in a connected previous relationship.
Police have not ruled out that drugs are a factor in the incident.
The drama unfolded at the appropriately named Danger Point gannet colony in south Portland about 10.30pm on Tuesday night in howling wind and intermittent, driving rain.
By 11pm the woman and man had driven 20 kilometres to the Heywood hospital where they presented for treatment.
The two men in their 30s had attended at the Portland Base Hospital for treatment before being transported to Warrnambool.
All four drove past the Portland police station and no one contacted police.
Sources said the investigation into what happened had already consumed almost countless police hours with two men suffering life-threatening injuries.
"One man was bashed within an inch of his life and the other was run over. This could easily have resulted in the death of at least two people," a source said.
"We've got people claiming they were car jacked and stabbed by people they didn't know after meeting in a remote area by chance.
"It makes very little sense. It could be that who we thought were the initial victims could actually be the offenders," he said.
The source said that no one seemed to be telling the truth and that all those involved were in fact known to each other and that a meeting had been set up via social media Snapchat.
"We do know they all finished up hurt. One bloke has stitches to his head and extensive bruising to his body caused by being bashed with a pole. He could easily have died," he said.
"The woman has also suffered a wound to a right finger which has required stitching, suggesting she may have had a knife in her possession at some stage.
"It was a pretty fluid situation and is going to take some unravelling."
Anyone with information is requested to contact the Portland police station or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
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