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The Truth Was Out There

No more lies.

I am in truth sorry to have deceived you. There are many far more deserving of an apology that will probably never read this, but this is the platform that I have been gifted so you are the ones I will apologize to. This story does not yet have an ending so i’m not going to worry about telling you the beginning. You don’t need to know about the fruitless efforts in the Northwest or the draining investigations in the Appalachians. What you need to know is that I came to North Mississippi with a purpose.

At first I thought I was wasting my time in this state. I had been here for months with no real lead on the Bigfoot. The “Como Monster” (not to be confused with the Lake Como Monster) had been a hoax. A spotting in Holly Springs National Forest had been a lying asshole. As long as I had the funds for my investigations there was no point in quitting. I wasn’t quite worried yet to be honest, but I was beginning to grow at least a little concerned until I found that Sasquatch tooth just outside of Oxford Mississippi.

It might look exactly like a cow tooth, but everyone knows that cows don’t live in the woods.

Now that I had real leads it was important to maintain a cover. Traipsing the state for “Archaeological surveys” had worked fine thus far, fooling even friends and family, but gaining ground in the investigation had lead to the need to investigate at strange times and in extreme numbers of hours. I was fortunate to have an easy excuse fall so easily into my lap.

I’ve actually left behind a traceable timeline of my searching. When I was rushing off to Belden for fried chicken, I was hot on the trail in Tombigbee National park. When I bolted north for Tribecca Alley pizza, it was a stop after hitting the woods of Sardis, chasing squatch. The food I wrote about was good, that part wasn’t a lie. It honestly changed me. Finding North Mississippi’s best chicken in a gas station felt like finding the Bigfoot. For the first time I realized I could find fulfillment through other passions. Searching for the ultimate exclusive gas station find to share with you became my new goal and eventually brought me back to Tombigbee.

On a dirt road surrounded by oak and pine the “Food Mart” trailer sat fully in the forest with a working gas pump. I entered to find a kind woman sitting in a recliner behind a foldable table with a cash register. After purchasing an RC Cola, home done bbq ranch pork skins, and a Young Thiccboi mixtape, I knew I had made the big find. Then I met the Bigfoot by the gas pump.

It had always been my hypothesis that the real Sasquatch would be clearly more ape than man, just a slight evolution from gigantopithecus. I didn’t know shit. When it finally hit me that I had been walking and conversing with a Sasquatch, the Sasquatch as he would soon inform me, we were nearly to his home. His words faded in and out as I grasped at reality. “And that one there, that’s... it used to be used to mark property boundaries... say dogwood is cursed, can’t grow big enough to form a cross for crucifixion... red mark on the inside, that’s just a silly story though... Those thorns, those are smilax, you can actually eat the root... those ones, the roots make a good tea, kind of like sassafras... the snakes, but I don’t mind them because... it raw, but you can’t eat it without boiling it multiple times first” my face must have been an easy read because he paused, lowering his head in a slight crinkled smile. “I would be happy to fix you some fish and I can make some poke sallet as a side if you want, but it will take a while. I like to eat it raw, but humans shouldn’t ingest it without boiling it multiple times first”.

His house had the unexpected feel and technology of a doomsday prepper’s. Generator’s, backup generators... The fish he referenced was revealed to be cans of salmon. “I’m mostly vegan except I can’t give up fish. Never cared to eat an egg, or understood why adults of your species would drink the milk of other beast. You, you know what it is right? Well, I guess you could say i’m a pescatarian, not that you could use that terminology around the locals. That’s a good way to get called a hairy communist fa-”

“You talk to the locals?” It was a rude interruption, but I had finally found my voice. He sat down with a slight groan, turning to face me “Not really, no, they really only seem to care about one thing and once I explain that I could not give a damn about an ‘Old Miss’ vs a “Mississippi State’ they could not be less interested in me... but thats not the question you wanted to ask. You want to know how I came to be here”. Of course he was right. What followed next was a more harrowing tale than could have predicted. I wish I could recite it word for word for you as he told it to me. Instead i’ll have to explain it to you the best as I can remember, for i’m afraid there are some parts too terrible that my brain won’t allow me to recall.

My host was not the only Sasquatch so much as he was maybe the last one. A small population of his kind had once populated the North eastern corner of the United States. Occasional run-ins with humans had always occurred, but there had never been a violent turn until a chance encounter. “I can’t recall how the first contact was made, but after this group had become aware us, it all started there. It turned out to be a single strange family with their own strange traditions. It became one of their traditions that a young man from this family would need to kill one of my kind to become the patriarch. There was usually a long time between these hunts and when successful, they ended in the death of one of the oldest, sickest, or weakest of my kind.

As opposed to violence as we were it became an unspoken agreement that when the time came and we could smell the hounds encroach our woods, that the oldest and feeblest of us would offer themself up in a sort of sacrifice in exchange for a quick clean death and quick evacuation of our territory. Eventually what was already a sacrifice too far, was not enough for this family. Hardly anytime past the hunt and establishment of a new patriarch, the family retuned on a new hunt. By this time our number had dwindled and there were no old or sick amongst us to sacrifice. We ran through hills and ditches for days pursued by these aggressors until the young man hoping to assume command of the family shot my sqautchling child”. The painful words that followed brought me to tears and I will not try to recall them here. I will tell you how the situation unfolded.

My host, who had never killed anything but fish, impaled a hunting dog with a cedar branch. He killed a second one by biting its throat, and described to me the sickening sensation of tasting warm blood for the first time as it gushed into mouth as he clamped harder. He told me, that he attempted then to kill the young man who slew his son. In a desperate struggle on the edge of a hill he injured the assailant’s back and ripped the rifle away, before he was knocked over the edge by another member of the clan.

The hunters escaped, but they had left behind the two clues the Sasquatch would need. A Remington bolt action rifle engraved “Kennedy” and a zippo lighter engraved “Fitz”.

The Sasquatch claimed to have waged a war on the most powerful family in America. He shot JFK from the grassy knoll with the president’s own family heirloom hunting rifle. “People were scared to talk. No one was going to step forward and say they saw an 8 foot ape in a trench coat take target practice on the president’s limo”. In retaliation the Kennedys hunted down every Sasquatch they could find. “It was harder after that. I had to pay an assassin to kill Robert. It didn’t sit with me right, to not pull the trigger myself and I felt the next one had to be done by me in person. That was a mistake”.

It was then that the Sasquatch tried to kill Ted Kennedy by pushing his car off of a bridge. “I failed to kill Ted, and in the process I took an innocent life”. Haunted by his slaughter of an innocent, he says that he never killed another Kennedy. “Though I think they blame me for a few more. I had a cousin, haven’t seen him in years, was half human so he never felt like he fit in with us much... Anyway, I suspect he may have extracted some vengeance of his own... But after I, and this is going to be hard to explain, and It hurts to talk about so please just accept it... I... Well I had an affair with a Kennedy, whom I will not name, and well... I knew I had to find where they would never come, where they would never find me”.

He explained to me that he had once heard that JFK was quoted wishing that Oxford Mississippi could be destroyed in nuclear holocaust. I vaguely recalled a story that JFK had been dealing with Ole Miss trying to deny entrance to James Meredith when he was informed of the soviet missiles in Cuba and that he had asked Bobby if the those missiles could reach Oxford. “Seemed like Oxford was the place to hide. If one had hated Oxford that much, maybe they all did. After I caught on to you tracking me I was scared at first that you were working for them. I had to keep moving around this area until it became clear that, well, no offense, you weren’t a professional... And well then... then I had to let you find me... because of Rose”.

“She demanded, that we give her a family name, that it was protection... which is just as well... your kind doesn’t have the vocal capacity to pronounce anything in my tongue. It’s very strange I know. I don’t want it to sound like its some kind of sick trade. A Kennedy took my son, a Kennedy gave me my daughter... It’s not like that... Rose, they would never hurt Rose, they would still hunt me... but not Rose...” My host rambled on. He was dying. His infant half human daughter was about to be left with alone in this world. I stayed with them in his final weeks. I learned how to feed and care for Rose. I learned that a pirated Chinese copy of The Empire Strikes Back was her favorite movie, or rather his favorite movie for her to watch. “It’s the only positive representation of our kind.

The one in this is an astronaut. He flies a spaceship. he’s not a simpleton like Harry in that Henderson’s movie. I need to find her a copy in english”. I never had the heart to tell him that Chewbacca was a Wookie not some kind of space squatch.

So now, a baby halfsquatch in my care, I must journey to the flooded timber swamps of a new state. My late friend’s cousin, another half human half Sasquatch notoriously called “The Skunk Ape” may or may not still be alive out there, and if Rose has a chance to be with family, I aim to make it happen. I’m afraid you might not hear from me again for a little while, but it’s not because of you. It’s the dying wish of the last Sasquatch.

The littlest halfsquatch