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hs05150.jpgbuy prints of select* halfsquatch photographs at etsy or dawanda. (*prints of all photographs are available upon request) day 5

“I can’t do this.”

“Don’t be such a pussy, Dave,” Stew said as he tried to reposition a pair of hefty, hair-covered arms. Rigormortis had set in.

“You will do this. Now get in there and help Stew,” said Tucky. His canvas overalls were heavily pocketed and reinforced at the seams with silver rivets. Any exposed skin was smeared with blood. Dirt stuck deep in the grooves of his tanned face, leathered by years of windchill and whisky binges.
Tucky walked around his trophy, his chest puffed up and out. Behind him, a young man with glasses mimicked his pace, asking questions, taking notes.

“Could I get a picture, Mr. Thompson? Perhaps you could crouch down next to….”

“My Sasquatch?” Tucky grinned.

“Yes, indeed. Your Sasquatch,” said Jeremy, for the first time that night without any trace of sarcasm or doubt. This was no hoax.

Tucky shooed Stew and Dave out of frame and squatted on the garage floor. He set his hand on the Sasquatch’s shoulder. His grin stretched wide as the snapping white light of a camera’s flash popped once, twice, then again and again.

Dave watched his father and recoiled. He wanted to escape, spend the night in jail, anything. He rubbed his hands against his black pants and picked bloody bits from under his fingernails. His black polish was chipped.

“Stew! Dave!” Tucky called them back to the middle of the room. “We gotta get this baby on ice.”

“Fuck, dad! I’m serious. I can’t fucking do this.”

“David. Language!” Andrea Thompson barked. She balanced a tray of enormous cinnamon buns on the heel of her hand. “I thought you could be hungry.”

Jeremy politely declined. Tucky and Stew grabbed at the pastries and ate as they hovered over the Sasquatch, its arms still sticking up and out.

Like a zombie, Dave thought, a hairy, naked zombie. Had he seen a picture in a magazine he would have marked it, clipped it, scanned it, e-mailed it to Rebecca for sure. They would have marveled over its creepy pose and the fakey eyes that looked like glass. The shaggy, short hair was a wig, the body a fur suit, its head one of those sturdy mascot costume jobs. Dave knew about those. Every year when tourist season dropped off his mother would panic and in a histrionic fit demand that Dave walk up and down Main Street at lunch hour dressed as The Cinnamon Fun Bun, trying to force free cinnamon bun samples on disinterested locals.

But he hadn’t seen a picture in a magazine. There was nothing imaginary about the dead creature on the concrete floor. It was very tall and covered in tawny grayish hair, except for the palms and the soles of its feet, which were hairless and rough. Its chin jutted, simian style. And it was female: her breasts were full and sagging – no sturdy bras for full-figured Sasquatch ladies in the Yukon bush. He didn’t dare look between her legs and was disgusted with himself for wanting to.

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                                                                                                                                                          ©2008 pamela klaffke