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[DRG2015] When Legends Live

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posted on Jan, 20 2015 @ 10:58 AM
Part One:

A crisp, cool air blew off of Lake Superior, giving Dr. Shawna Russell a chill as she pulled onto Highway 23. She'd only seen glimpses of the water that she'd been sent to investigate, but what she had seen, reminded her of the ocean.

It was mid-July, and a comfortable 78 degrees Fahrenheit outside, but the chill off the water was so different from the warm salt winds; that she dug in her backpack for a sweater. Shawna, a marine biologist, had been in waters all over the world - so she looked forward to exploring the Great Lakes mysterious depths. She was only sorry that she wasn't able to see the Mackinaw Bridge. Instead she'd landed in Flint, Michigan and opted to take a long winding journey along Lake Huron, up past Mackinaw Island, where she had to ferry her vehicle across.

Michiganders were still shaken by the devastating earthquake that had rocked the upper peninsula three months ago. They mourned the loss of hundreds of lives that had plummeted to a watery grave, as the Mackinaw Bridge crumbled into the lakes that terrible day. The resulting tidal waves of the Great Lakes, further devastated towns and harbors all along the Michigan, Wisconsin, New York, and Canadian coasts.

She had been contacted, when reports of boats began disappearing on Lake Superior. Soon those reports began to include tales of sea monsters, gaining national attention. Crypto-zoologists flooded the area, along with enthusiasts and reporters. Shawna chuckled, recalling the ferry ride across Lake Michigan. She'd been approached by several reporters asking her of her occupation and interest in visiting Michigan. She supposed it was her dark Florida tan and sun kissed golden blonde hair that gave her away as a visitor. However, she'd managed to dodge the reporters - knowing the government didn't want her talking to them about their interest in lake monsters.

Her phone rang and she pressed her blue tooth, and took the exit to Houghton. "Dr. Shawna Russell", she answered customarily.

"What's your ETA, Doctor? There are a lot of important people here waiting to start the debriefing." Edward Finch's nasally voice droned in her ear. She cringed, cursing her rotten luck. Dr. Edward Finch was another leading marine biologist in her field, and a bane to her existence. They never liked one another, or rather he didn't like her, after she'd rejected his advances. She should have known Admiral Braddock would call in another specialist to look into the sightings and disappearances.

"I'm just pulling off the exit now, Edward. I'll be at the marina within a half hour." She cut off the call, unwilling to hear his voice in her ear again, and followed the directions given by her vehicles GPS. There were several people waiting for her outside, when she finally arrived at her destination.

There was an intensity in the air, that Shawna was immediately aware of. What in the world was going on here?

An attractive man, rugged and smiling tensely, came forward with his arm extended. "Dr. Russell, I'm Officer Noah Mallory, Sheriff hear in Houghton and Harbor Master." He took her hand firmly and shook it. "Follow me, we'd like to get things underway.

She was led into a large building, a warehouse really, that was converted into a base of operation of sorts. She'd paused, stood dumb-founded really, when she realized how many people were present. The military, coast-guard, and several scientists she'd hoped to someday meet - all milled around the room.

"What have I walked into, Officer Mallory?", Shawna asked, her voice wavering slightly.

Noah looked at the young woman's green-blue eyes, so much like the sea. "I'm not sure I can answer that. Here, sit down. You look like you've seen a ghost, and call me Noah."

She sank into a chair that Noah held out for her, and the room began to get quiet as everyone took a seat at. "Everyone, Admiral Braddock will be here momentarily - until then, I've been asked to give you the information we do know." Noah flipped on a projector.

"On April 23, 2015, a devastating earthquake caused massive damage and cost us 213 lives. In late May of 2015, we received our first bizarre report of - well for lack of a better term, a Lake Monster.", Noah paused as several scientists scoffed, and people chuckled.

"Since that first report, I've had hundreds more. 12 boats with 46 people, missing. Fishing is down, and local wildlife has been acting, well strange. We've had 6 fatal attacks by what experts are saying is a cougar, possibly bear - in the last month alone. That's a number we see, maybe - over a years time nationally. The last occurrence happened a week ago, when a commercial liner, and a crew of 5 disappeared. I've alerted the public that the Great lakes are closed, but with it's size, there just no real way to keep everyone away from the water. Which is why Admiral Braddock is here. He may possibly need to declare a state of emergency." Noah finished, his voice hard and edged.

Noah turned to the projector. "This first image is wreckage that washed up on the shores from one of the first boats to be reported missing back in May. No survivors have been found." He flipped to the next photo.

"The next photos are a bit disturbing. However, they demonstrate the unusual behavior of the animals around the lakes." Noah said.

Shawna had to turn her head away. The graphic pictures, of mutilated humans, caused a hush to fall over the room. Another woman, rose to her feet and neared the projector, examining the pictures closely. "It isn't a bear attack. Do you see these slashes here? They are too close together to be from a bears claws. I'd say we were looking for a very large cat."

Noah nodded, "Everyone, our area expert on the wildlife in the region, Dr. Emma Pratt."

"Are there any large cats indigenous to this area?", a man in a military uniform asked.

Emma Pratt pushed her glasses up on her nose, a nervous habit, and nodded. Her brown hair, pulled back in a ponytail, bobbing with the movement. "Yes, we have lynx, bobcats, and the occasional cougar migrates in from the west. However, it's very unusual to get attacks on humans from these animals. It's so rare that we have maybe - one or two attacks yearly, across the entire nation! In fact - we have more injuries and deaths with big cats at the zoos than we do in the wild. Regardless, the attacks are unprecedented and bizarre."

"What do you mean by bizarre?" Shawna asked.

"The attacks all happened along the water, and not even in one locale. Three attacks have been along Lake Superior - one on Canada's side, with the other two in the Upper Peninsula, while the remaining attacks happened along Lake Michigan in Wisconsin and Lake Huron in Michigan's thumb region. A distance as great as 400 miles between the attacks. So we know it's not a single animal, but a group." Emma explained.

edit on 20-1-2015 by CirqueDeTruth because: word fix

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edit on 20-1-2015 by CirqueDeTruth because: editing fix

edit on 20-1-2015 by CirqueDeTruth because: another fix

edit on 20-1-2015 by CirqueDeTruth because: grammar fix

posted on Jan, 20 2015 @ 11:03 AM
The rooms attention was drawn to an elderly man, who slowly rose to his feet. Noah smiled fondly at the older man, nodding to him. "Everyone this is Joseph Yuka, he is Chief of The Lake Superior Tribes, and he's asked to speak with you all."

"My ancestors, have legends of an underwater cat, called Mishibijiw.", Chief Yuka said, his voice melodic and wise. "Many of my people still roam the wilds of the forest, and fish on these lakes, and they have seen your cat, but it is not a cat. It comes from the depths of the water, driven there long ago by the Binesi, or Thuderbirds, who were so large that when they beat their wings, it sounded as thunder." Chief Yuka said.

Edward Finch snorted, "These are fairy tales. Legends. Do you expect us to believe all this is caused by dragons?"

"You may believe as you wish." Chief Yuka said bluntly. "It is my duty, as The Great Spirit bids me, to warn you. The Earthquake broke open a barrier, that kept the Mishibijiw at bay, sealed long ago by the Thunderbirds. But there are no Thunderbirds left, all hunted to extinction, and they are the Underwater Cat's only natural enemy. Even the great warriors of the ancient times, could not defeat this enemy. Not without the help of the Binesi."

He began passing out a print out that showed petroglyphs of the creatures. "The Mishibijiw is like a cat, in that it can come on land, but it is not a cat. It is - as this man put it", Joseph motioned to Dr. Finch, "More like a dragon."
"But this wasn't the only creature that the Binesi helped separate from humankind. There is also the Misiginebig, a giant Sea Serpent with horns - larger than that of an anaconda, but like it. It cannot leave the water, but will attack anything it sees as a threat within it's waters. They too have been released from the underground caverns by the great earthquake."

"Well, if there is any truth to these legends, what should we do?", Shawna asked.

Chief Joseph Yuka smiled. "You should do as the Lake People are doing. Get away from the water."

~ End of Part One. To be continued.
edit on 20-1-2015 by CirqueDeTruth because: added images

posted on Jan, 20 2015 @ 11:34 AM
a reply to: CirqueDeTruth

CDT I love This! Great Job so Far!! I look forward to reading more!!!

posted on Jan, 20 2015 @ 11:45 AM
a reply to: SyxPak

Thanks! I'm not sure how I'm going to continue on with it, but it just didn't feel right leaving off there. But not to worry, I'll chew on it for a few days, and the ending will come to me. It always does, and now I'm committed. There's no putting it off!


edit on 20-1-2015 by CirqueDeTruth because: (no reason given)

posted on Jan, 20 2015 @ 12:14 PM
a reply to: CirqueDeTruth

Well Please don't chew too long!! LOL!! I mentioned wanting to read more because You wrote this, "~ End of Part One. To be continued." at the end.
It could be left alone, but to see more will be Great!!

posted on Jan, 20 2015 @ 12:20 PM
a reply to: SyxPak

Oh yeah, I'll add to it, and won't put it off too long. The whole premise for this story was written up with notes a few years ago. My biggest problem is condensing stories down from a novella to a short story for this forum.


posted on Jan, 20 2015 @ 01:33 PM
Part II

Shawna stood at the edge of beach, looking out over Lake Superior. Never before, had she ever been afraid of the water. She'd swam with sharks, manta-rays, and other deadly creatures - and not felt such fear. Yet, these cold, dark waters held a danger none of them had ever encountered before. Of that she was certain.

She jumped, when Noah came up from behind her and put a hand on her shoulder. Over the past few days since arriving at Houghton, and that initial debriefing, she'd come to enjoy the Sheriff's company. When Admiral Braddock insisted that more definitive evidence would need to be gathered; before he could declare a state of emergency and officially keep everyone off the Lakes - she and Noah had both went to the library to research the legends Chief Yuka had mentioned. They had learned little more than what the Chief had already told them. Legends and myths.

"I don't believe in myths", Shawna told Noah. It was the same mantra she'd been repeating over and over again since their research at the library.

Noah smiled. "Your colleague - Dr. Finch - has readied the boat. They are ready to shove off as soon as you arrive. I've been sent to fetch you."

Shawna shivered as gooseflesh raised on her arms. She rubbed her arms vigorously, and nodded with resignation, turning to return to the docks.

"You don't have to go," Noah told her, sensing her reluctance.

Shawna snorted. "It's my job, Noah. I definitely have to go onto that water. Besides, I'm not leaving Edward Finch to do my job. We were both brought in to give our opinions on what's happening here. It won't due for me not to have an answer for the Admiral when he returns."

Noah wisely said nothing as he followed Shawna up to the docks. However, they both paused when they came closer. Underneath the docks, in the water, there was something moving and it was large. She saw Edward and the burly Captain that was taking them out onto the water, Harold Knapp on the dock above the creature. Shawna prepared to call out, to warn them, but Noah covered her mouth with her hand.

"Don't. You don't want to draw attention to us. We have no where to run." Noah whispered urgently. She watched in horror, as the animal rose up out of the water, creeping out onto the beach, low and still beneath the dock.

It was a dragon. Shawna had no other description for it. Horns protruded from it's head and in a ridge along it's back. It's skin was scaled and shimmered in the sunlight a metallic green. It's tail was as long as the body, still dragging in the water as it moved up the beach along the dock. The creature, from a distance, looked to be over ten feet long!

Noah had already retrieved his weapon from it's holster, beginning to take aim. It was then, that the creatures head swung toward them. Shawna's breath caught in her throat. Even with the distance of more than a hundred feet separating them from the creature, she saw the creatures yellow slitted eyes. Like that of a snake or reptile. The creature drew itself up, and in that moment, it did look like a cat, it's tail whipping back and forth. She screamed when it moved lighting fast, and Noah opened fire. Edward and Harold, still on the dock were frozen in shock when the creature moved quickly onto the docks and towards the two men.

"Get off the docks! Stay out of the water.", Shawna screamed, running with Noah toward the two men.

Captain Knapp, reacted instinctively, jumping on the boat and narrowly missed being taken down into the water. Dr. Edward Finch, wasn't so lucky. Deprived of one of it's prey, the creature wasn't about to let the other get away. In one graceful leap, the creature dove back in Lake Superior's waters - taking Dr. Edward Finch, screaming into the water with it.

Noah stopped firing. He was certain he'd hit the creature several times. It hadn't even phased the creature, didn't even slow it down.

"I got it." Shawna said, her voice trembling.

"No, I didn't get it.", Noah cursed, heading the last 20 feet towards the docks. He turned back to Shawna, not wanting to leave her alone on the beach.

Shawna was staring at her phone. "No", she told Noah. "I got it. On camera. I have the evidence to show the Admiral." She looked up. Her eyes wide and fearful. "Poor Edward. I did not like the man, but he didn't deserve that ending."

Shawna shook her head in disbelief. "Noah, it's a dragon!" she said, still not quite believing it. Despite seeing it with her own eyes, despite the short video recording her phone took, despite all that she'd learned at the library - of the Obijwe Indian's, Mishibijiw and Misiginebig legends.

"We have to warn people." Captain Knapp said as he joined them on the beach. His face ashen at his near miss. "The waters are not safe."

Shawna hugged her arms to herself, staring out over the waters. "Soon - no where will be safe. Noah, it's an invasive species, soon it will travel the rivers, get to the oceans. We have no idea what's in store for the future. Or for any of us. If we can't kill it, an apex predator like that, then this world is no longer ours."

"It's a new world," she continued, her voice soft and trembling. "And our place in it, is tenuous - at best".

~ The End

edit on 20-1-2015 by CirqueDeTruth because: grammar fix

edit on 20-1-2015 by CirqueDeTruth because: another grammar fix

posted on Jan, 20 2015 @ 01:40 PM
See, not too long a wait. Just a matter of trying to end it shortly. LOL.


posted on Jan, 20 2015 @ 02:04 PM
a reply to: CirqueDeTruth

A very good ending to an Awesome Tale CDT!!! Loved It!!! Thanx for not making Me hold My breath too long. I was turning blue! LOL!!!!
Very Awesome Indeed!!!

posted on Jan, 20 2015 @ 03:08 PM
a reply to: CirqueDeTruth

Wow, good twist on a dragon tale! And I'm glad Finch got chomped up! That was really, really good.


posted on Jan, 20 2015 @ 05:27 PM
Thanks SyxPak & beansidhe.

I was really worried, that somebody else would come up with a similar angle. I've done quite a bit of research on the The Great Lake Tribes legends, as I'm of the Lakes Tribes myself. Now this was a story already outlined out, with notes, character and setting development. Outlined chapters numbering 18! It's really - not really - a short story at all. Not in it's original conceptualized format. But it's been sitting there waiting in a binder, a few years now. So this contest "Theme" brought it from my book shelf and gave it life.

I always worry with the short stories that I don't have enough time or space for character development. It is gratifying to hear the Finch's "unlikeable - ness" came through the short story version too.

edit on 20-1-2015 by CirqueDeTruth because: grammar

posted on Jan, 20 2015 @ 06:53 PM
Excellent story, bet Finch gave that old dragon heartburn.

Living in The Great Lakes region, and with our strong native presence here, a legend like that is almost believable. Given that there are many fault lines that run through the lakes....well I shudder to think what would happen with a major earthquake in our area.

I can assure you that this story is fodder for a nightmare. Thanks for that!


posted on Jan, 20 2015 @ 09:07 PM
An interesting twist on dragons and a good tale!

posted on Jan, 20 2015 @ 09:38 PM
a reply to: CirqueDeTruth

There are times when character development can take a necessary backseat to sheer immersion in radical, successive events- that make a reader almost forget about character development. I chose this exact route with my book, and I believe that angle has contributed to its modest success.

I believe you have a real talent for writing, Cirque, and your story here is a good example. Your English and punctuation are very good as well. Excellent piece. Best of luck! That could be expanded into a book, with a lot more wild events occurring down the road. It might take some effort and a lot of time, but the solid underpinnings are there already.

posted on Jan, 21 2015 @ 06:38 AM
a reply to: TrueAmerican

Thank you for the kind words and encouragement.

Yeah... I've been saying I'm going to someday write my great Horror/Sci-fi/Fantasy/Adventure/Romance novel - for twenty years now. I have tons of ideas and outlines, but sitting down and writing it - start to finish - never happens for me. It's a whisper of an idea, drowned out by - children yelling, chores awaiting, and a demanding husband. (He's disabled) Life.


posted on Jan, 21 2015 @ 07:09 AM
a reply to: CirqueDeTruth

I hear ya, darlin'....I'm also working on books, but 'real life' keeps interfering!

That was awesome! Really well written...certainly kept my interest!
(I also live surrounded by the Great Lakes, so it was very cool to read a story about my neck of the woods!)


posted on Jan, 21 2015 @ 07:38 PM
a reply to: CirqueDeTruth

Wow! I love stories that are born out of historical references. Are the pictures representative of the ancient art in your area. They are very interesting. I am part Lakota Sioux but grew up in northern Idaho. There are ancient stories of monsters in a number of lakes in the region. I really enjoyed how you constructed your story. I look forward to reading more of your work!

posted on Jan, 21 2015 @ 08:47 PM
a reply to: grayeagle

Yes, they are from the area. The first petroglyph on my second post is from Lake Superior Provincial Park in Canada. It's at the northern tip of Lake Superior and is called the Agawa Rock. Mishibijiw translates to great horned lynx.

Here is the Wikipedia page:

The Underwater Panther

Other legends from the area tribes include the Windigo's of the Chippewa, the Bagwajiwinini - which are mischievous but good natured enough fae. The word translates roughly to 'wild man', and they even have their version of mermaids that were once purported to live in the Great Lakes called Nibiinaabe.

In the longer version of the story, it's the Nibiinaabe who come forth from the depths of the waters to help defeat the Mishibijiw.

Thanks for reading and the feedback.


edit on 21-1-2015 by CirqueDeTruth because: added thought

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