There’s no home for you here

Chelease is the weakest magic person I’ve met.  I don’t say that as a brutal takedown, I was surprised by it.  When we cast the spell to sever the link between the creature and the McQueen family it was like I was carrying a couch and realizing that somehow you have 90% of the weight was on my end.   

I could barely feel a spark coming from her.  I would be surprised if she can do much magic on her own.  Maybe she has partners.  I did my best to ask her about this in a non-offensive way.   Her answer?

“Truth be told the solution to most monsters is shotguns, rifles, and grenades.  I don’t have reason to do much magic in my job.  When I do need magic that’s when I contact Milham.  It’s been a long time since he returned my calls until now.” 

We hung out in Betsy’s cabin for a few days while she assembled a small army McQueens who were willing to come, townspeople who know what’s up and usually are happy to pretend they don’t, and a motley crew of others.  It was like that scene in a western movie where a bunch of bounty hunters show up with their various flashy hooks.  Each less unique and interesting than the last.

Betsy was cautiously optimistic but she wasn’t going to risk us waking the beast without all the back-up she could get.  She and Chelease spent a couple hours each day comparing the McQueen family journals with the “Monstronomicon”.  They were pretty excited about that.   

At one point I asked them “Are all these monsters real?” 

They looked at me like I just took a dump on the table and said “What do you think we’re doing here?” 

I was happy to leave them to it and spend some time outside.  The weather was nice and I don’t get out to the country too much.   

When the time came Betsy took us out on the river in a weird little boat.  I’m not used to boats with cabins.  It’s too high.  I felt like it was going to tip right over.  Everyone else lined the banks with guns and axes and one guy even had a fucking sword.  If the beast had gone nuts and everyone started shooting there’s no way the three of us wouldn’t have been killed in the crossfire. 

I never saw the thing much because it was buried in the mud.  Allegedly it’s been slumbering there since 1907.  I asked Betsy if an outline I saw was the beast’s body and she said that was just a front leg, the entire bank was the creature.  You hear “15-foot monster” and you think “fifteen feet?that’s not so big”.  It is.   It’s very big.

At the very end of the ritual I saw an eye.  In the mud just a little shift and then I was being watched.  If the eyes are the windows to the soul and this thing has a soul it was a soul of malevolence.   

Even though the thing was evil and seemed to exist just to kill people I feel a little sad about what we did.  It’s like when you see a tiger in the zoo.  You look that tiger in the eyes you’re glad that the world is the way it is so you don’t have to meet that thing in the wild.  But you also can’t help but be sad too for the world that’s gone.  The world where tigers were free.  It doesn’t make sense but what you’re seeing just feels a little wrong. 

We banished the beast and the entire side of the river collapsed.  A couple people on the bank fell in but we fished them out.  One guy busted his leg but everyone agreed that was a tiny price to pay to end the monster’s reign.   

A little more magic has gone out of the world.  I don’t know how it works but this was a place of power and I could feel the magic slipping away once the creature was gone.  Maybe this is how it really happens.  Maybe this is why there’s less magic all the time.  Every time we untie one of these knots the rope gets slimmer.   

It’s for the best, but it’s a shame too. 

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