Flash Friday 23/08/2013: Cold-Hearted Monster
Patrick Carroll was deemed crazy by many over his borderline-fanatical hunt for the Loch Ness Monster. Patrick didn’t think of himself as crazy, but then again, who was he to ask?
He would admit that building a house right next to the Loch itself was a tad on the extreme side, as was his arsenal of ships, aquatic survey tools, and comical Nessie-shaped objects around his house. He chalked it all up, however, to the fact that a man should have something to do in his old age. Something to get him up in the morning.
Today was the end of that, given that the Loch Ness Monster was staring through his living room window.
Patrick didn’t notice right-away. It was only when he put the paper down to look out the window did he see the long neck craning downwards, with big eyes and almost human-like teeth replacing the lush scenery of the loch. Patrick yelped in surprise, which didn’t faze the monster at all.
“Oh, so you finally noticed,” Nessie said. “It’s about time to be honest.”
“Wh-what the bloody hell?” Patrick said, turning in his chair. “What the hell are you doing here?”
“What am I doing here? I’d ask you the same question about why you put a sodding house next to mine, and went on to hunt for me for a good twenty years. Well, mission accomplished, mate. Here I am. And now, in return, I’m going to dedicate the rest of my life observing yours.”
Patrick scratched his head. “I don’t exactly get up to much, you know.”
“That’s alright, because neither do I. Nothing much to do at the bottom of a lake. Eat some greenery. Check the pet rock collection.” Nessie’s eyebrows furrowed. “Avoid being stared at by over-curious idiots while you’re trying to have a nap. Well, the tables have turned, now. You’re going to be my exhibit, and I’ll take every pleasure of watching you as you go about your daily business. You have windows in your living room. You have windows in your bedroom. And, by God, I’ll make you regret the day you ever thought it was a good idea to put windows in your bathroom.”
“This is hardly fair,” Patrick said. “I never got to see you once.”
“I know, but that didn’t stop you from using that annoying sonar thing. I can hear that, you know. You want to know what it sounds like? Do you? No, in fact, you know what? Keep reading the newspaper. I’ll show you what it’s like.”
Patrick raised a brow, but went along with it anyway. Opening his paper to the page he was on, he resumed the article on the recent football game, trying to keep his mind off of the fact that a myth was currently pressing its face against the glass.
“Hey,” Nessie said. “Hey. Heeeeey. Hey. Hey. Hey, you.”
Patrick grunted, flicking the paper for no other reason than to show annoyance.
“Hey you,” Nessie continued. “You. Yes, you. Hey. You. You there. Hey. You. Yes, you there. Hey.”
“Do you mind?” Patrick said, putting the paper back down. “You’re being annoying.”
“Exactly. Ex-act-ly.” Nessie nodded to himself, an argument well won. “It drives me up the wall it does, all that incessant pinging. I’ll be sure to do it at two in the morning as well, to achieve the full effect of being woken up by a curious old sod that has nothing better to do. I don’t have a sleep cycle like humans do, you know. Of course, you’ll be learning all this in time, given that I’ll be around your house for the rest of your days.”
Patrick pondered the situation for a while. He looked at the Loch Ness Monster as it glared at him through a window. He looked at all the paraphenalia and tourism-inspired goodies he owned. Finally, he nodded to himself, and picked up the phone receiver on the table next to him.
“What?” Nessie said, craning his head to see what Patrick was doing. “What are you planning?”
“It’s simple, isn’t it? You said it yourself, you’re going to be here for the rest of my life. Do you know how much attention you’re going to attract if I call up and say that I found you? Who knows, perhaps they’ll even pick you up and slap you in a tank in a zoo somewhere. You think my sonar is bad? See how you prefer it to kids screaming at you and slamming against the aquarium tank. See how much of your precious sleep cycle remains after that one, eh?”
“Oh.” Nessies faced dropped. He began to waddle backwards, its tail entering the water of Loch Ness. “Oh, well, you know, I wasn’t actually here.”
“You’re sure? You made such an effort to make yourself known.”
“Oh, but, you know, all those fake sightings and such. People think they’ve seen me, but it ends up being something else. Like wood, for instance”
“Are you saying that I should chalk this all up to a talking log at my window?”
“Yes,” Nessie said, nodding. He was still peddling backwards, his neck the only visible part of him. “And a few bin bags, and maybe a fish or two. Can’t trust nutjob eye-witness accounts these days,” he said, with a nervous chuckle. “It’s all for media attention, and what-not.”
“Well, alright then,” Patrick said, opening his paper. “Just stay away from my house, you hear me?”
“Oh yes, sir, I hear you perblrlblrlr,” Nessie said, his head finally submerging under the waterline. The last of the first ever proper Nessie sighting were merely bubbles coming to the surface, presumably where Nessie had forgotten to stop talking.
Patrick rolled his eyes, returning to his article. Some things are better off pretending to not exist.