Chapter 1: The Squatch

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Horror  |  House: Booksie Classic

Featured Review on this writing by AdamCarlton

Reads: 116
Comments: 1

The Squatch

 

‘Oh, GOD... AAARRRGGGHHH!’

The scream pealed through the woodland. A frightened owl screeched. A wolf in the distance lent its baleful howl to the pitching, human cry.

 

The hunter screamed again as the monster stood on him pinning him to the ground. It reached down and snatched up his hunting rifle. It snarled. Its large ovate eyes gleamed menacingly in the moonlight. And then it snapped the weapon in half as if it were made of plastic, not metal and wood, and tossed the pieces away.

 The hunter cried out again as an impossibly huge, hairy, hand, grabbed him by a leg and held him up. Dangling upside down like a prized salmon, the hunter flopped about in the monster’s grasp. His car keys slipped from his pocket, along with a penknife, a Zippo lighter, and several odd coins.

They jangled to the forest floor.

‘NO! PLEEAASE... Oh GOD... AAARRRGGGHHH!’ His screams were terrible as he was swung around in the air like a ragdoll and smashed against a tree trunk. His bones cracked and shattered like glass from the Herculean impact.

Blood squirted from his mouth, his body burst open, and his innards began to push their way out of multiple fleshy ruptures.

The hunter was tossed to the ground like a discarded candy wrapper.

The hunter lay on his broken back. His ribs had been crushed, his lungs punctured by sharp broken bones, his spine turned to jelly. His eyes were bloodshot, blood oozed from his nostrils and mouth.

It loomed over him, its face... That terrible blasphemy, a mockery of a human likeness, grimaced down at him revealing thick yellowed, stumpy teeth.

It fingered its blood matted shoulder where the hunter had shot it. Then held a bloodied finger to its simian nose and sniffed. It bellowed the sound was mournful like a Bull but louder, much louder and ferocious. The sound rumbled through the woodland like a lion’s roar... The forest creatures were silenced by that dreadful sound. And then it lifted up one of its long thickly muscled, hairy legs.

The hunter could not scream anymore, his body was too broken for that, he just gurgled and closed his eyes as the beast stomped on his head, crushing it like a watermelon under its huge, leathery, calloused, Bigfoot...

*****

I ended the call on my iPhone and dropped it on the kitchen table next to my half-eaten stack of pancakes drowning in a sea of maple syrup; Bad habit number one, Sweet tooth.

 I downed the last of my freshly squeezed OJ and scratched my stubbly chin. It was a habit I had when I was deep in thought.

The phone call had been short and secret. The Caller, Matt Lopenski was a government official, not that he would ever admit it to anyone, including his wife and three kids, who thought he worked for an insurance company...Nope! He wore a black suit, white collar and cuffs and packed a Glock 19 inch 9 MM semi-automatic pistol in a shoulder holster. Not exactly the hardware an Insurance salesman packs. Matt Lopenski was a go-between. I did not know, and probably never would know, who pulled his strings. He definitely pulled mine, though!

I strolled over to my Nespresso and popped in a pod. The rich aroma of coffee made me smile. I dropped two brown sugar lumps into the cup and stirred it; Bad habit number two, caffeine junkie... I knocked it back like a shot of Tequila and went upstairs to shower and pack. I had a long journey ahead of me... Matt had booked me a flight from Rick Husband Airport Amarillo to Portland I.A...

Oregon here I come!

*****

 Crater Lake National Park was a four-hour drive from Portland. It was a beautiful natural forested expanse. I pulled up on a gravel roadside in my rental SUV next to several parked police vehicles.

 The Homicide Detective in charge of the case was there waiting for me. Matt had done his job well, as usual, and had contacted the Police Bureau in charge of the murder scene and informed them of my imminent arrival.

The Homicide Detective was an unfit man; he looked as if he needed a bigger sized shirt. He had sweat patches under his armpits, and his moon face was red and sweaty and his lips were stained blue from the blueberry slushy he was sucking up through a straw into his impressive walrus moustache.

‘Homicide Detective Browning... and you are?’ the Detective abruptly introduced himself.

I shook the offered pudgy hand and pulled my I.D out of my Levi’s back pocket and flashed it.

He raised an eyebrow, ‘Professor. Gabriel Hussey... So, do I call you Professor or agent Hussey?’ he raised an eyebrow then took another slurp of slushy.

‘Just call me, Gabe!’ I smiled pushing my Livingston straw woven Stetson back from my forehead.

Browning eyed me up and down, ‘Some fancy boots you got there, cowboy! Are they real snakeskin?’

‘No! why?’

Browning just raised an eyebrow, ‘Well it’s a bit of a trek through the woods to the crime scene, and I wouldn’t want you to mess up those pretty boots of yours!’

The Detective was a comedian!

I followed Browning into the woods trying to avoid his B.O vapour trail. I took off my aviator shades, slipping them into my top denim jacket pocket.

‘So, tell me, Gabe, what are you a professor of?’

I took a deep breath, ‘Palaeontology, Anthropology, Zoology and Cryptozoology.’

‘Why that’s a lot of ologys’ you got there tucked under your cow horn belt, Gabe, for someone so young looking’ Browning gave me a sideways glance. ‘About thirty-six, am I right?’

‘Thirty-four to be exact, Detective,’ I corrected him.

Browning smirked ‘Have you got a rich Daddy, Gabe?’ he insinuated.

 ‘No, Detective, I earned them all on my own merits,’ I took that slight on my stubbly chin. ‘You see, I have an Eidetic Memory.’

‘A Photographic memory, Impressive,’ Browning raised an eyebrow and nodded.

‘So, tell me, Gabe, why did the government send an academic, ology guy, like you, to these parts, just to take a look at a murder case?’

I half smiled; it seemed our Homicide Detective was getting into full interrogation mode.

‘Why, I couldn’t possibly say, Detective Browning!’

‘Hmm!’ Browning huffed. ‘I don’t suppose it’s because one or more of those fancy ologys’ of yours could come in useful at identifying the bigfoot print that creature left on that poor sucker’s head?’

‘We will have to see, Detective Browning?’ I grinned. I was enjoying this cat and mouse game with the good Detective.

We reached the crime scene, the body was still there, covered in a plastic sheet. I could smell it on the warm morning air, it wasn’t good. Three uniforms were standing around looking bored.

‘I hope you haven’t had breakfast yet!’ Browning sneered then took a slurp of his slushy, and whipped off the sheet.

‘Jesus Christ!’ I blurted out. The body itself looked like a sack full of spanners and monkey wrenches; it was all lumpy and bumpy with broken bones sticking up. But it was the head... or lack of, that was the shocker. It had been totally squashed into mush. There were hair and bone fragments and ... oh .lord... dried brain matter all over the place, and smack in the middle of it was a huge six-toed bare footprint.

‘So, tell me, Gabe, what do those ologys’ of yours tell you about this?’ Browning’s tone dripped with sarcasm and amusement.

I took a tape measure from my pocket knelt down and measured the footprint... it was sixteen inches from heel to toe.

‘Yep! Just as I thought, a Grizzly, for sure,’ I said then pulled out my iPhone and started clicking away.

‘You got to be shitting me!’ Browning spat out a mouthful of slushy, ‘There is no way on this goddamn earth, that a Grizzly did that!’ he scoffed and pointed to the messed up body.

Even the cops standing around gave me that look of incredulity at that statement.

'Hey, Boss,' One of the uniforms who had been poking around in the underbrush shouted excitedly, 'I think you are gonna want to see this!'

We hurried over to where the uniform was pointing.

The stock end of a Winchester 70 featherlight bolt action Deerhunting rifle was lying on the ground. The metal bolt was bent at a forty-five-degree angle, and the rest of the metal barrel had been sheared in half.

I snapped a couple of pics, my head was buzzing with excitement... I swallowed it down.

 

'So, Ology Professor, Do you still think a Grizzly did, that?' Browning sneered.

‘Well, Detective Browning that is what I will be putting in my report to my Superiors... So I guess you can remove the body and take it to the morgue, now, and get this area cleaned up.’

‘Don’t tell me how to do my fucking job, Professor...’ Browning growled angrily.

I smiled wanly at Browning and turned to leave.

‘And where are you going?’ Browning called after me.

‘Into town to get a beer, Detective,’ I shouted back.

‘It’s only nine-thirty in the goddamn morning, Gabe. It’s a little early for a beer?’

‘Funny! I was thinking the same about that Blueberry Slushy, Detective,’ I shouted back.

‘Fuck, you, Gabe!’ Browning furiously retorted then threw his slushy into a nearby, thorny bush.

Bad habit number three; Rubbing folk up the wrong way!

I just waved a hand at Browning, slipped my aviators’ on and made my way back to my rental car. My head was buzzing with excitement. I had never seen such clear evidence before to support the existence of a real-life, goddamn, Squatch. I was definitely coming back here after sundown with all of my gear to see if I could pick up the Squatch’s trail.

 I sped off down the trail headed toward the small picturesque town of Prospect in Jackson County where I was staying during this investigation.

I pressed play on the CD and sang along with the tune...

‘Take it eezee... Take it eezee... don’t let the sound of your own wheels... drive you craaazee... ooh ooh woo... ooh ooh woo...’

 

End of part one

 


Submitted: February 23, 2021

© Copyright 2021 Celtic-Scribe63. All rights reserved.

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Comments

AdamCarlton

Started with a bang, in medias res! A squatch, huh?

Going to be an addictive read...

Wed, February 24th, 2021 7:47pm

Author
Reply

Hi, Adam
Great to hear from you.

So, I have this planned (so far) as a 3 parter.

But, 'Gabe' will be a keeper. So don't be surprised to see him turn up again, from time to time, in new adventures.
I hope you will enjoy the thrill ride?

Best Wishes
CS63

Wed, February 24th, 2021 12:03pm

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