Diary Of A Monster Hunter

A Short Story By Luis A. Mendez

June 11th, 1888

I received this diary today from the beautiful woman next door that I consider a very kind and beloved friend to me. She gifted it to me for my birthday, which happens to be today. I have a confession — I never thought I had any use for one; but a gentleman always shows graciousness for being gifted an item, whatever that item may be, and especially when gifted from such an angelic creature such as Sarah. I plan to write in this diary in honor of my friend’s kindness towards me at least once each week, if not every day. What I will write down is anyone’s guess. I have no clue myself. Perhaps I will comment on the news of the day? Perhaps I will follow along with the upcoming presidential election? Perhaps simple private letters regarding my dear family and friends? What this journal will come of use for me will be an interesting discovery.

June 13th, 1888
These last two days has led me to having an epiphany of the heart. I can no longer deny my romantic feelings for my friend next door. Sarah is one of the most beautiful and kind creatures to have ever walked on this God-forsaken planet, if not in all of existence itself. Her gifting of me this diary has, for me, turned out to have been a revelation. How I long to write down every intimate feeling I have for her. Everything that I love about her. Every carnal sin that can’t escape my mind when thinking of what could be between us in the intimacy of our home as a couple in holy matrimony for the rest of our days. But why write it here? For my eyes only? My heart the only thing to know of this pain I am in? I cannot let it just be this. I must speak to her promptly. Perhaps even after I have finished writing this entry. My heart yearns for her acceptance. To feel her touch, and finally learn of her lips. I must finally relieve my soul of this never-ending war for my heart. Today will be the day I confess my love to her. Today is when I ask for her hand in marriage. Wish me luck dear journal.

June 14th, 1888
All hope and light in my life is now gone. OVER. Rejected in favor of another dear friend of mine, a half-hearted betrayal from both that wounds my soul now and will do so forevermore in the rest of my time on this planet. I have no more need for you journal. This is my last entry.

October 28th, 1888
To write again in this journal gifted to me by the woman who rejected my love for her for a friend I went to grade school with, is something I thought I would never do. But months later, and now coming from their wedding ceremony, undoubtedly one of the toughest mental tests of my life so far to sit through. I now may have finally started to reach closure on this issue. The pain remains, but perhaps my path to new possibilities begins now?

November 5th, 1888
A presidential election that I found to be quite the interesting one will be decided tomorrow. The campaign between President Cleveland and Mr. Harrison seems to have been just as competitive as was expected. President Cleveland, based on my personal reading of the public at large, seems to be neither very popular nor terribly unpopular either. The man was elected in quite the close contest four years ago. Mr. Harrison for his part seems to have put up quite the fight against the incumbent. My personal guess is that it will be a map very much like last time, with the president holding on to a second term. Mainly because the all-important state of New York. The president was governor of the state, and the New York Times endorsed his re-election. This I believe gives him the advantage. If I am correct, I will show this entry to a friend I have a wager with regarding the election. If I am wrong, I may have to burn this journal.

November 12th, 1888
I was so close to correctly calling the presidential race. It seems so strange to me that the president seems on his way to winning the popular vote but has lost the Electoral College to Mr. Harrison thanks mainly to the president’s own home state going against him in a rather tight contest there. Had I just foreseen that, I would have won the wager. Getting used to President Harrison will be an interesting development, I was just getting used to Cleveland as president. The Democratic Party’s sole presidential victory since the war makes me wonder if they’ll ever effectively govern the nation again.

December 26th, 1889
I thought this diary lost, but I am relieved to have found it this morning when packing my things. Given the events of the last couple months I need some place that I can unburden myself. Sarah’s sudden passing to plague was an unexpected and tragic circumstance. Her husband, and dear friend to me for so many years, Matthew, was kind enough to invite me to help him in this transition by spending Christmas with him. My pain and sorrow for my precious’ death has been replaced with hope she is among the angels now where she belongs. Funny that on the eve of my leaving here, just a day after Christmas, I discovered this journal she gifted to me last year hiding among the pockets in one of my traveling bags. As if she had wanted me to be reminded of her parting gift. I have neglected you dear journal, and I can’t promise I will ever write in this again. But I can promise I will treasure your existence as the only piece of Sarah that belongs to me, up until I join her at heaven’s gates.

December 27th, 1889
I cannot properly think right now. I almost feel as if I’ve gone mad. Today was to be my final day here, at Sarah and her husband’s home. But I leave it wondering what I have gotten myself into. I’m not prepared to write about what I saw, what I witnessed, on this evening. But my eyes have seen a glimpse into the secrets of nature itself. This journal will be my only solace once I am brave enough to admit to myself what I witnessed.

January 3rd, 1890
It has taken days to finally convince myself that, in fact, I have not gone mad. No matter how many times I attempt to tell myself that I am, I must face the reality of what I saw that final evening visiting my widowed friend. The time has come for me to unburden myself. Tonight, I have one final restless sleep, and I let it go tomorrow in these pages.

January 4th, 1890
Let it be known that I, Garrison Killam, am of sound body and mind as I write this account on this journal. As noted by the date of this entry, it is the fourth of January in the year of our lord eighteen hundred and ninety. I vow everything in these pages, no matter how unbelievable and blasphemous, truly did occur…

A dear friend of mine, Matthew, had his wife, the angelic Sarah, suddenly pass from this earth last fall. I was welcomed by him to spend Christmas together in an attempt to help him cope with her passing. On my final night as an honored guest there, the twenty seventh date of December in the year of our lord eighteen hundred and eighty-nine, I had one final dinner with my friend. It was a very large and hearty feast, as he wanted to have me leave fully and properly fed with the best his servants could cook up for us. After dinner, we were to have our final drinks together on this long visitation. Typically, the drinks lead to an hour or two of good conversation before we each retired to bed. However, on this night I was to have a different experience. My friend promised to show me something so unbelievable, I would question my own sanity — he would not be wrong. However, at the time, I thought it an amusing joke he wanted to play on me. So, I played along, and he called for his horses so that we may ride together to a barn on his property. I thought it was foolish to do such a thing so late at night but went with him regardless. We shortly arrived at a moderately sized barn on a random patch of farmland of which he had been leasing to a young family, but by now the family was no longer there, and the area was clearly abandoned. He welcomed me inside to the barn; half-expecting him to have one of his servants launch at me for a good fright, and half-expecting he may have truly been very serious. You see, one knows when someone is serious as death about things. He clearly was at that level of seriousness at that precise moment. I took in the view of many candles strewn about, a hired servant keeping watch over them so that they always be alight and replacing those that had melted away. In the coral inside, I was greeted by an incredible revelation. A large creature, about the size of small horse, looking as if it were a very large black mountain lion, but with two tails, a set of wings, feathers all over its body, and a beak for a mouth, laid there chained to a post. A small bowl of food and a slightly larger bowl of water next to it. I asked my friend if this was some sort of new exotic creature discovered in another part of the world, of which he had somehow legally bought and brought here. Matthew informed me that he had discovered this creature while out on a hunt. It was a carnivore, half mammal and half bird. It could fly with its wings, not too high mind you, but fly nonetheless. It could tear into human flesh easily with its beak, and it was the likely culprit behind some livestock that had gone missing. He informed me that the creature had nearly killed him, and that he had caught it using a trap. When I asked him what trap could conquer such a beast, I was stunned to learn it was the very candles around us themselves. It seemed the creature was nocturnal, and too much light would somehow affect its ability to move effectively. It lost all energy when light of any kind hit it. Thus, why he had a servant keeping watch over the candles so that they never go out at night. During the day, it slept, and the servant could go home for the day. I implored my friend to please share this incredibly discovery with others, but he was hesitant to. I left Matthew knowing such an incredibly beast roamed this planet, a monster really. But by my solemn oath, I have kept word of this to myself save for you now my dear journal. For if the creature never comes to light of the public view, I will have others read of my witnessing it.

December 17th, 1891
I have spent the last couple weeks wondering where to write down what could be my final thoughts in this world as a free man. This journal, gifted to me by Sarah so long ago now, remains my best option. For if I am to die, I want the reasoning recorded here.

Some weeks back, I was given an emergency summon to meet with my dear friend and widow of the angelic Sarah’s, Matthew. I was promptly sent over to the barn in which he had kept this mysterious creature. There, I was met with a shocking sight. The creature had seemingly escaped, and his servant lay dead. I was informed that the servant, in a fit of anger over a dispute with my friend, purposely allowed the candles to burn out the previous night, and thus the creature had the ability to now escape. To my amazement, my friend then confessed to me that he had murdered the servant in a fit of rage, not the creature as I first suspected. I was the only one who knew. I hesitated to, and I begged him to go to the proper authorities, but I found myself helping him to hide and dispose of the poor servant’s body. If I am arrested for my part in this, I have my entire testimony now written in this dear journal of mine.

January 26th, 1892
I am down to one final candle. I find myself flirting with death. I have followed my friend to ruin. This journal may be all that remains of me after the light flickers away. I should have never accompanied Matthew to attempt to hunt down this creature days after it had escaped. I should have left him to die when he asked I join him into a cave where we figured the creature to belong to. I should have just left the creature’s lair after we found ourselves separated and I heard his cries of death from afar. The creature was indeed inside, and it had gotten to him. But I wanted absolute proof of his demise, and I followed the screams. I saw the creature feasting on his corpse and I saw its hungry eyes dart my direction when it noticed me. I was able to get myself into a nice sized crevice with only one entry and light the candles I had on me during the hunt; keeping the creature from approaching me. But all that which sits between me and the monster is this candle, and the path to escaping the cave is blocked by the beast. I have been debating whether I should approach it and use the candle as a shield on my way out, forcing it to back off; but I have been too cowardly to do so. I had hoped the daylight during the day would reach into the crevice I was stuck with the creature in, but I miscalculated. Now here I am writing with one last melting candle and the beast continuing to growl at me just a few feet away. The last few days has been hell, and I only have one last hope of survival, I must carry this candle with me and hope the beast continues to back away from me as I near the entrance. It is my only hope, my last chance, all that I got. It is now, or I allow the candle to finish melting and the light goes away, and the monster preys on me. These may be my final words on page in my life. Wish me well, the time to leave this trap and this creature has arrived…

January 29th, 1892
I write this entry by moonlight. My escape plan worked better than I could have hoped for, the creature feared the light so much it backed away enough for me to escape its dwelling. Unfortunately, I have lost my way in this wilderness and the creature has come out to hunt me. I can hear it, and worse yet, I believe it may be just one of its many species. Perhaps that’s my paranoia, but I swear I have begun to hear multiple creatures. They seek me out, and each day I must take shelter in the darkness of night, is another chance for me to be caught by the beasts. If only I can finally find my way out of here, because the monsters hunt me, no longer I them when I agreed to help my friend with his obsession to take back his caught beast. I should have attempted to escape the cave earlier, for they hunt me in the darkness, and I’m all out of candles.