August 22, 2016 | Posted in WooFPAK Heroes

Betsy’s waiting for the group when they get out of the mines. She’s wagging her tail so hard that her whole butt is shaking. A plethora of men and women are standing around, waiting to see what they can do to help the trapped college kids.

Rhett and Chris are right there with them; the WooFPAK strains at their leads, trying to get closer to Chase.

“You did it,” howls Princess. “You found them!”

Jag bellows, “that’s great! I can’t believe you really found them!”

“I knew that I would,” bluffs Chase, puffing out his chest. “They aren’t very nice, though. They don’t listen well, either.”

He glances over his shoulder, glowers at the blond haired boy that had been offering out the cigarettes.

Zarro lets out a bark of laughter. “Do they ever?”

“My daddy listens real good,” says Betsy, proudly.

Chase has to admit, “he did listen better than the others.”

The police usher the civilians away from the mine after that. Randy lets the crew come back to his house, gives them a room for the night. It’s worse inside than outside, with fading paint on the walls and dust clinging to the picture frames. An old string of fairy lights have been hung up on the mantel and the fire still burns bright.

“This is great,” says Chase, stretching out in front of the fireplace. “I love runs, but it’s nice to sleep in a house every once in a while.”

There’s a bear skin rug down in front of the fireplace. Princess nods at it, asks, “did Randy catch that?”

“No,” answers Betsy. She rolls onto her back, legs splaying out in all directions. “That’s from one of my daddy’s friends. He’s a real big time hunter, and he brings things like that by sometimes. Last time he came over, he brought a turtle with him!”

“A turtle?” Princess snorts. “How did you get a turtle open? I mean no offense but….”

Betsy ignores the almost insult. “Daddy got it open for me. It was pretty good. I’ll eat just about anything he eats, you know? Oh! I was thinking earlier, I bet that I know what you guys are going to want to do while you’re here!”

Jag suggests, “eat?”

Zarro says, “sleep?”

“Hear the story of the monster out at Jennings Run,” announces Betsy, proudly. “I never saw the big foot myself, but Millie did. She’s a cat that lives out at the Carousel Farms. She’s a real “scrappy sort, you know? I don’t think that she’s ever led me wrong before.

This is how the story goes.

Just past New Hope Road, there’s a place where the Great Allegheny Passage crosses over Jennings Run. It’s a small stone bridge, leading into a patch of land that’s scattered with groves of maple trees.

There are a few spots where the trees are particularly thick. It’s one of these spots where the monster – the big foot – is supposed to live in one of these groves. No one goes there, they don’t dare.

Millie knows this…but, one day, she’s very invested in catching herself a squirrel. Without thinking, she chases the squirrel into the forest…and ends up being chased right back out of it by the big foot itself.

“Most big feet are real tame,” says Betsy. By the time that she’s done her story, the humans have gone to bed the and the embers are starting to burn low. “But that one…that one is different. I know you guys are heading that way, and I just want to make sure you know what you’re getting into. You keep an eye on your humans, okay?”

 

Katelynn E Koontz – Author