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The Green Lion Man: The Return of Dragonsnort

The Green Lion Man: The Return of Dragonsnort

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Published by Devon Pitlor
Brooke Nescott is reacquainted with her former lover under eerie circumstances.
Brooke Nescott is reacquainted with her former lover under eerie circumstances.

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Published by: Devon Pitlor on Sep 04, 2010
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-1
The Green Lion Man: The Return of Dragonsnort
by Devon Pitlor
I. At the annual cryptozoologists' convention, Eric Palobay takes the podiumBrooke Nescott, her son Jared at her side, sat behind her domestic partner Eric Palobay inthe over-crowded auditorium. An entire veiled world of strange scientists,cryptozoologists as they are generally known in the practice of a pseudoscience, watchedand listened as Palobay, a noted entomologist, pulled a preserved specimen from a jar of alcohol. The specimen was about as long as two Polish sausages articulated end to endand had probably far more than one hundred jointed and spurred legs as well as a pair of bulging purple and aqueous eyes which were still inexplicably glaring. Palobay held thedead specimen up to the gasping crowd. No one had ever seen anything like it before. “Itdoesn’t have a name,” he said, “and it really doesn’t exist any more than the other non-creatures we discuss here. Yet here it is. I’ll probably name it after myself.” He unfoldedand deployed the pickled creature the length of a small table on the stage in front of himand reached back to Brooke for his presentation paper: why, by whom and where thespecimen had been found and so forth. Brooke eyed him with some admiration, theadmiration she had always harbored for this man who had become everything short of herlegal husband.Then without warning, the creature, still damp with the alcohol preservative, began tosquirm on the table. It stood up on its countless legs and shook itself like a wet dog. Itspurple eye globes spun in all directions, and suddenly a pair of leathery-looking yetsickeningly gauzy wings sprouted from its sides. With a scratching grate across the tabletop and a little leap it flung itself into the air and began flying around the auditorium.
 
The audience gasped, and many ducked their heads as the creature swooped down uponthem. Its circling became closer and closer to both Eric Palobay and the terrifiedaudience. A pair of grinding mandibles were now visible in its insectine face, and itbuzzed menacingly, soaring in loops over the entire meeting. Then all at once a tall mancovered with vividly traced tattoos and pierced nearly everywhere with bright metallicstuds stood up, grabbed a nearby briefcase, and swatted the thing out of the air to thefloor, whereupon he firmly stomped it in two with the grinding crunch of a studded boot.Brooke caught her breath and, like the others, gazed in horror at the writhing crypto-insect’s last moments, but it was the slayer rather than the dying bug who most arrestedher attention.She tapped Eric Palobay on the shoulder and whispered “It’s Dragonsnort! He’s comeback.”II. Jared Nescott’s school assignmentJared Nescott, the precocious offspring of Brooke Nescott and the long-missingDragonsnort, had been very much occupied in his room using his computer and readingsome books he had checked out of the library. This was unusual for Jared, who being veryadvanced in school, generally finished his fifth grade homework quickly and made a pointof playing outside with his friends until called in for dinner. But on that day in Decemberof the dreary year 2010, Jared was very much preoccupied by a research project that hadbeen assigned by his teacher. Mrs. Umberly had challenged the class to research some of the great unsolved murders, crimes and disappearances of all times, things like the horrid1957 mystery of the Boy in the Box, the vanishment of the first American child VirginiaDare and the still unexplained murder of Swedish prime minister Olaf Palme in 1986. Allof these enigmas would, of course, require a book in themselves, and far too much hadbeen written on each of them. Jared became temporarily fascinated with the unsolvedZodiac Murderer of 1968-69 and his cryptic code, but later his attention was drawn to thedisappearance of bandmaster Glenn Miller over the English Channel in 1944. In all
 
subjects, Jared had found too much information and too many conflicting details. Theresearch, as it were, had been done multiple times in the past and nothing conclusive hadever been discovered. Unlike the other students who had simply accepted Mrs. Umberly'sassignment as such and were preparing a report, mostly Internet based, on the knowndetails, Jared had a genuine desire to contribute something new. Unsolved mysteriesbothered Jared, who had been of a curious nature about nearly everything all his shortlife.Looking over a pile of notated filing cards on the Jimmy Hoffa case of 1975, Jared grew atonce frustrated and tossed everything that he had finished so far on each of the cases intothe trash and erased the document file on his laptop.Then he thought for a moment and grabbed a legal pad and walked pointedly into thekitchen where his mother sat drinking a glass of red wine waiting for Eric to get back from the university and eat dinner. Since their union over three months ago, Eric had,with Jared's unconditional approval, moved into Brooke's house, and Brooke, perenniallybored by her career as a lab histotechnologist, had resigned from the medical center, takena considerable pay cut and gone to work at Central State University as Eric's assistant inthe Department of Entomology of which Eric was chairman. At times she even managedto slip away from her desk, go into Eric's research lab and help with the examination of insect specimens. For all the world, her close companionship with Eric Palobay seemed tobe nearly flawless.Jared stared at his mother for a minute then in his usual mature way asked her if he could"interview" her.Brooke was, as always, slightly amused at her gifted son's manner of requesting a seriousconversation and politely agreed to an interview "after a hug and a kiss," which Jaredobliged her with."So how are the unsolved murders and disappearances going?" inquired Brooke.

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