There’s Creatures in the Everglades

📅 Published on November 9, 2020

“There's Creatures in the Everglades”

Written by WordDogger
Edited by Craig Groshek
Thumbnail Art by Craig Groshek
Narrated by N/A

Copyright Statement: Unless explicitly stated, all stories published on are the property of (and under copyright to) their respective authors, and may not be narrated or performed, adapted to film, television or audio mediums, republished in a print or electronic book, reposted on any other website, blog, or online platform, or otherwise monetized without the express written consent of its author(s).

🎧 Available Audio Adaptations: None Available


Rating: 9.75/10. From 4 votes.
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I’ve lived in the Everglades all my life, most of it just south of Little Shark River on the west side of Oyster Bay. My place is right on the edge of the water, and my nearest neighbor is over a mile away. That’s how I like it, too—I ain’t that fond of people as a rule.

I’ve had me a little redbone hound named Skeeter for the last five years. I spend a lot of time out on the Glades hunting and fishing, and no matter where I was going, he would come along. I heard him barking up a storm out by the water early on a Sunday morning about three weeks ago, though, and I ain’t seen him since. I’ve been worried that maybe a gator got him—either that or somebody took him. I’d almost rather it be the gator.

I’ve got a chicken coop out beside my house where I’ve been keeping four laying hens. The building itself is small, maybe six by ten, and just like my house, it sits up on stumps about two feet off the ground in case my yard floods. Last Saturday morning I went out to gather eggs, and one of my hens was missing. I looked around a good while and never found no sign of her. It could’ve been a bird of prey that got her, but I figured it was more likely coyotes. They’ve been getting a lot braver these last years, not as shy of people as they used to be, plus Skeeter ain’t been around to warn them off. Also, I’ve noticed that the chickens ain’t been coming out into the yard as often as usual, which was a pretty good sign that there’d been a predator around.

This morning, like I always did, I went out to get the eggs and discovered that my hen population had gone from three to two. I was more than irritated, I was flat out mad. I understood that coyotes and other critters had to sustain themselves just like me, but there were plenty of things out in the wild for them to eat—they didn’t have to come for my chickens. Plus, they’d scared my other hens to the point that they wouldn’t lay. I was gonna have to eat breakfast without eggs.

I looked around inside the coop, but didn’t see no sign of coyote or fox—or anything else for that matter—so I went outside to see what I could find. It’d rained yesterday, so I should’ve been able to find tracks of some sort. I looked all around the coop, though, and didn’t find none at all. That was curious, mighty curious. I reckon it was possible that she’d wandered off down by the water, but that would’ve been unusual as well, especially for my chickens. My chickens stayed close—I’d never seen any of them wander off down toward the water.

I was walking back toward the house when I saw something peculiar. It looked to me like there was a pair of eyes watching me from beneath the coop, just little glints of light I could see there in the dark. I didn’t want to get too close in case it was something that might’ve come at me, like maybe a rabid coon or a fox, but I got as close as I dared and bent down real low. It was definitely a pair of eyes, but they didn’t look like no coon or no fox. It didn’t look like a gator, neither, unless it was a mighty small one. The eyes were too close together.

Finally, I decided to shine the light from my phone to see what it was. I don’t know why it hadn’t occurred to me by then, but what I saw beneath the coop was a snake—and when I say snake, I don’t mean a rat snake or a chicken snake, I mean a big ass snake, like a python or an anaconda. Swear to God, it’s head looked like it was as wide as both my fists put together; and it was hard to tell because it was all curled up on the ground, but parts of its body looked to be as big around as my leg.

I won’t lie—it scared the shit out of me, probably because I hadn’t been expecting it. Wasn’t all that long ago that there weren’t any python or anaconda in the Glades, but then ignorant city folks started getting them as pets. Once the snakes had grown and the people had realized they’d wound up with more than they’d bargained for, they’d just go let them loose in the Glades. Given that the snakes didn’t have any natural predators in these parts, they’ve apparently done pretty well for themselves.

Personally, I don’t have nothing against the big snakes as a rule. It weren’t their fault that they got put here, and just like everything else, they were doing what they had to do to survive. This snake in particular, though, had most likely eaten two of my chickens. Come to think of it, as big as that snake was, it might’ve been what got Skeeter. That made us blood enemies, me and the snake, and I intended to set things right.

I went up to the house and got my shotgun, and on the way back I was already thinking about the belt or the hatband or even the boots I might get made from its hide—big as it was, I could probably pick and choose. I got back down to the coop and shined under it with a proper flashlight, and to my surprise and discomfort, the snake was gone. That was startling—I gave a quick look around to be sure I wasn’t about to get attacked. There was no sign of the snake.

I gave a quick look inside the coop. There sat my two chickens, looking at me like they wanted to ask a question but were too stupid to know what to ask, but they were alone. No sign of the snake inside. I went back out and started looking, making bigger and bigger half-circles until I’d finally made it down to the water. I saw several places that looked like where maybe a snake had slithered through, but I couldn’t be sure. I just hadn’t been around enough of them to know for certain.

Anyway, after about half an hour of looking, I decided that maybe I should put something up around the base of the coop to keep the snake from coming back and hiding there, where it could lie in wait for my hens. I took some chicken wire and nailed it all the way around the building, and then staked it into the ground till it was nice and snug. That snake would have to do some damage to itself to get past that wire; otherwise, it would have to wait out in the open, where it would have to deal with me.

It was a hot and muggy day already, so I was muddy and dripping with sweat by the time I’d finished with the chicken wire, so I decided I’d take a shower before I had breakfast. No great loss—I didn’t even have any eggs. So, I showered, which made me feel better all by itself. Once I got out, I caught my reflection in the mirror, so I stopped and gave myself a look. I could probably use a shave, but I hadn’t given my straight razor a good stropping in a while, which meant it would yank my whiskers as much as it would cut them off, so I didn’t bother. I started for my bedroom, my towel draped over my shoulder.

I’d barely put my first foot out of the bathroom and into the hall when I saw it, just a flash of something low and large coming at me. In that same instant the big snake hit my leg, high up on my thigh, and the force of the impact knocked me off my feet and sent me crashing to the floor.

I’d heard people talk about how something or other seemed surreal, but I’d never truly understood what they’d meant—until then. The pain in my thigh was immediate. I knew the snake wasn’t venomous and that it didn’t have fangs, but its teeth were plenty big and plenty sharp. I could feel them tearing away at my thigh muscle. It all happened in a hurry, too. By the time I’d found my bearings, I was lying on my side with that big snake wrapped around my leg two or three times and its mouth latched hard on my thigh. My God, that thing’s head was huge. It looked to me like its mouth had bit down over half way around my thigh—and I wasn’t a small man by any means.

The snake was still trying to get itself around me, too, around my middle. It had already trapped one of my arms against my side, but the other one was free. I started banging on the snake—anywhere I could get at it—but it didn’t seem to make any difference at all. It was solid, almost like a piece of wood covered in scaly skin, and my blows just glanced off of it without making a difference.

It was heavy, too, and bigger around than I could’ve reached with both my hands. It was all I could do just to raise myself up off the floor with my one free arm; but when I did, the snake managed to get another coil around my middle, more up toward my chest.

By then the lower half of my leg had started to ache from all the blood being trapped in it, and my foot was tingling with thousands of pinpricks. The snake was working its jaws, too, digging its teeth farther into my thigh. I got a glimpse of my foot—it was starting to turn purple. I think it was about then that my shock began to turn into panic.

I could feel the snake starting to squeeze, like a constant pressure getting heavier and heavier on my middle. It was starting to affect my ability to breathe, too, like each breath I took was just a little bit smaller than the one before. A new wave of panic set in—or maybe it was determination. Either way, I used my free leg to start kicking at the snake, the part that was wrapped around my other leg. Like when I’d been hitting it, it didn’t seen to phase the snake.

I’d started rocking back and forth when I’d kick at it, though, and before long it seemed to me that the snake’s coils around my middle were shifting, like maybe it was trying to get its grip higher up. I was in full fight mode by then, and before too long I managed to pull my arm free and lean up against the wall. Just then, though, the snake tightened the length of its body, and one of its coils was straight across my chest. It squeezed down hard, and I could feel my lungs starting to seize up.

Like I said before, I’d lived in the Glades all my life, and I’d been out in the wilderness since I was a little boy. I’ve run up against gators and water moccasins, snapping turtles and panthers, hurricanes and droughts, every danger there is the Glades has to offer, but never in my wildest dreams did it occur to me that I would be taken down by a giant snake—one that wasn’t even native to Florida. It truly was surreal, in the most bizarre sense of the word.

I was hardly able to do more than pant by then. The snake kept tightening its grip on my chest with its powerful coils, little by little, inch by inch, taking away my ability to fill my lungs. I was starting to feel lightheaded, too, like maybe I was gonna hyperventilate. I’ll admit it—I was terrified. It was like I was staring the end right in the face, and there wasn’t nothing I could do about it. The thing was, I wasn’t ready to die. No matter what the cause, I didn’t feel that my time on Earth was supposed to end just yet. I was in a bad fix, but I wasn’t done, not while I still had any breath at all in my body. That’s when I remembered—my straight razor. It was sitting on the sink.

After working at it, I managed to turn my body enough for my free foot to push against the wall, moving me in the direction of the bathroom door. But not only had the snake incapacitated one of my legs and hampered my ability to breathe, it was also heavier than hell. Trying to move with it all wrapped around me was like trying to shove a bathtub full of water. I wouldn’t relent, though. I finally managed to grab hold of the doorjamb with both hands, and then I could both pull with my arms and push with my leg. I got myself about halfway through the bathroom door, and then I rolled over onto my back right next to the legs that held up the sink.

My muscles were running out of air by then, though, and it felt like I was losing my strength. I tried to roll to my side, but I wasn’t able. The snake seemed to have readjusted itself around my chest in a way that gave it more leverage, and was squeezing me harder than ever. For a second, I thought I was about to pass out, but I fought it as hard as I could, fought to take in as much air as was possible, and finally managed to push myself to my side.

I took hold of one of the sink’s legs and started pulling. I pulled as hard as I could, with every ounce of strength I had left in me until my hands reached the top of the sink. I held myself up with one hand, and frantically searched around the surface with the other. Just when I though my arms were about to give way, I felt the razor. I tried to grab it, but only managed to knock it to the floor as I lost my grip on the sink, and it bounced to the front of the commode. Not to be deterred, I managed to take in a few sips of air, and started rocking my body. I rocked until I finally toppled over, banging my head against the side of the tub in the process, but that had gotten me close enough.

I took up the razor and started trying to cut the snake, first one place and then another, but was having little luck. I really had let that razor get dull. I focused the blade on one spot, right over my chest, and finally started making a little progress. The snake didn’t relent, though. In fact, it seemed to intensify its grip. I felt something pop inside my chest, like a rib breaking, and pain immediately seared through me. I had no choice but to stop cutting.

I fell over against the wall, feeling like I was about to black out, and through the tunnel of what was left of my vision I saw the snake’s head, still latched onto my thigh. Probably as a reflex more than anything else, I reached the razor at the snake’s head and started slashing, hard as I could, over and over.

The next thing I remember was seeing my bloody thigh, blood flowing from the wounds. Then there was the snake’s head coming at me, at my face, at my hand that was holding the razor. I just kept slashing at it, and punching and kicking with my good leg. About then it occurred to me that I could breathe. It hurt to, but I could take in air—the snake had loosed its grip on my chest.

It was about then that the snake struck right at my face. It knocked me back against the wall and latched on, from below my chin to the top of my forehead. I was nothing but a pile of desperation by then, though, and I kept slashing. At some point I got the razor up next to the snake’s jaw and started sawing, and pretty soon it let my face go and fell away. I tried to stand up, but I didn’t have the strength, so I just started kicking at it with my good leg. I kept that leg going like a piston, like a crazy man, screaming and cussing all the while.

Pretty soon I realized that all the coils had pretty much fallen away from me—at least they were loose enough to where I could wriggle my way out of them, so I did. I rolled over next to the commode and kept kicking and yelling. The snake sort of regathered onto itself, like it was preparing to come back at me. It occurred to me that most of its body was either in the hall or the bathroom door threshold, though, so I made a snap decision. I lunged at the snake before it could lunge at me, and I grabbed the door and tried to slam it shut. I wasn’t able to because the snake was still partially in the way—and it truly was heavy as hell—but I was on one side of the door and it was on the other. I kept pushing, and kept pushing, and kept pushing until finally I was able to close the door all the way.

Once I heard the latch catch, I collapsed to the floor, thoroughly exhausted and heaving for breath. It was only then that I felt the pain in my chest again, like somebody was stabbing me with a knife with every breath I took. The pain was better than not being able to breathe, though, so I kept on breathing.

I don’t know how long I lay there—it was a while—but I finally came around. This wasn’t over—I still had a huge snake in my house, and the only thing separating me and it was my bathroom door. Aside from the straight razor that had been my salvation, there wasn’t anything else in the bathroom of any use to me. Well, that wasn’t entirely true. There was rubbing alcohol and gauze and tape. I could clean and dress my wounds, so that’s what I did.

The wound on my thigh was pretty gruesome. There was blood all over my leg. I wiped it down and washed it off best I could, and gave it a good look. It was all mangled and still bleeding, but at least it wasn’t pulsing—the snake hadn’t got to an artery. Still, I had lost some blood, and needed to do what I could to slow it down. I poured the rubbing alcohol over it—it burned like a son-of-a-bitch—and then I wiped it down again and wrapped it up tight as I could with the gauze and tape. In once sense, I thought, I’d been pretty luck. Had that snake took hold of me about two inches higher than it had, it could’ve done some real damage.

My hands were all cut up as well. Some were probably from the snake’s teeth and some from the razor, but none of them appeared to be too bad. I tried to stand up so I could wash them off in the sink, but found that I wasn’t really able to. I had to pull myself up against the wall and then lean on the sink to keep my balance. My bad leg was still pretty useless—felt like dead weight. Still, I washed my hands and took a look at myself in the mirror. I was a pretty ghoulish sight—had blood all over my face. I washed it off and saw pretty much what I’d expected. There was an oval ring of little cuts from the top of my forehead, down my nose and under my chin, and back up the right side of my face—where the snake had took hold of me. Like the cuts on my hands, though, none of them were bad, so I just kept washing them off and putting pressure on them until they’d all but stopped bleeding.

I was worn out, so I took a seat on the commode and started thinking. Above everything else I was elated to be alive, but I knew I still had some hurdles to clear. I thought about trying to get out the bathroom window, but it was little and way up high. I didn’t think I’d be able to get myself out of it in my present condition; and even if I did, what would I do next? Like I said, my nearest neighbor was over a mile away—no way I was walking that far. The key to my truck was in the kitchen, as was my boat key. My phone was in my bedroom sitting on my bed—right beside my shotgun. Everything I needed at the moment was in one of those two rooms, and the one thing those two rooms had in common? I had to go out into the hall to get to either one of them; and as far as I knew, that big snake was still right on the other side of the door.

I knew I couldn’t wait in the bathroom forever, though. It could be that somebody would come for a visit today, but it was more likely that nobody would come around for a week or more. Staying put wasn’t an option, so I made my decision, got myself a drink, rested just a little bit more, and then crawled over to the door.

My decision? Again, I grew up in the Glades. I was going for the gun.

It didn’t take me long to work up my nerve. I turned the doorknob quiet as I could, and then I slowly brought the door in and inch, maybe two, until I could see just a little bit out into the hall. There was nothing there, at least not where I could see. I opened it up a little bit more, keeping my shoulder braced against it in case I had to ram it shut in a hurry; but still, the snake didn’t show itself. Of course, I fully expected it to attack as soon as I put myself out into the hall, so before I did, I stuck my hand out as a decoy. Nothing happened—so real cautious like, I peeked around the door, looking one way and then the other real fast, and I didn’t see a thing. I opened the door the rest of the way, and as quiet as I could—which wasn’t very—I crawled out into the hall.

I moved toward my bedroom real slow, partly to keep the noise down, but partly because I just couldn’t go very fast. The hall looked like a long tunnel, like you’d see in those scary movies where you knew the person headed down it was about to run into disaster. I kept on going, though. I wasn’t going to be kept from my own bedroom by a snake—no matter now big it was.

I finally made it to the threshold, and I could see the butt of my shotgun hanging off the end of my bed. Nothing to do but keep going, so I did. By the time I saw it, though, it was too late. It had been coiled up across a pile of dirty clothes in the corner; and just like it’d done before, it sprung out at me like a flash of lightning. It seemed like before I’d even been able to move a muscle, it’d latched itself to my shoulder and knocked me onto my side.

This time, though, instead of laying still while the big snake had coiled itself up around me, I got to moving. The first thing I did was push back as hard as I could, then I rolled forward; and when I felt it coming up under me, I rolled toward it, sort of bringing it back against itself. It didn’t let go, but it hadn’t been able to wrap me up yet, neither. I tried to stand so I could get to the bed, but I wasn’t able. My bad leg went out from under me, and I crashed back down to the floor. That’s when it got me. Before I new it, it had two huge coils around my chest and had started to squeezing. My adrenaline was fueling me, but I knew I simply didn’t have the strength I’d had the first time around. I could feel the snake’s grip getting tighter . . . and tighter . . . and I knew I wouldn’t be able to fight for long.

As fate would have it, though, we’d fallen to the floor right at the foot of my bed. There sat the butt of my shotgun, right over me, just waiting to be taken hold of. I still had my one good arm, so I reached up and grabbed it, and then I gave it a good pump. The snake’s head was too close for me to put the muzzle on it, but it was a big snake—there were lots of targets. I wedged the barrel underneath it and forced the muzzle against its neck as close to the head as I could get it, and then I pulled the trigger.

I don’t think I’d ever heard a shotgun discharged inside a house before, but the blast was deafening. My ears started ringing, and I could smell the gunpowder right away. I could smell the blood, too, and I could see where it’d splattered all over the wall. The snake’s neck was so thick, though, that the blast hadn’t blown it clean into. I gave the gun another pump, and then I gave the snake another blast. That time, the snake’s body fell away, leaving its head hanging from my shoulder by its teeth.

I took hold of the snake’s head and pulled it off me, and then I flung it across the room. The snake’s massive body was still moving in spasms, but nothing that felt like it had intent. I sloughed off the coils from my chest, and then I sat on the edge of my bed and just stared at the snake there on the floor. It must’ve been sixteen, maybe eighteen feet long. How in the hell had it found its way up underneath my chicken coop, and how in the hell had it found its way into my house? I’d probably never know the answer to the first question, but I sure as hell was gonna figure out the answer to the second. If there was one of those monsters out there, there was bound to be another, and I had no intentions of going through what I’d just gone through again.

I probably needed to go to the doctor so he could see about my leg and my ribs, but for the time being I wasn’t about to go nowhere—except to my kitchen, or more specifically, to my refrigerator. I grabbed me a cold beer and took it to my recliner—even though it was before noon—and I took me a good, long drink.

Rating: 9.75/10. From 4 votes.
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🎧 Available Audio Adaptations: None Available

Written by WordDogger
Edited by Craig Groshek
Thumbnail Art by Craig Groshek
Narrated by N/A

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Publisher's Notes: N/A

Author's Notes: N/A

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Copyright Statement: Unless explicitly stated, all stories published on are the property of (and under copyright to) their respective authors, and may not be narrated or performed, adapted to film, television or audio mediums, republished in a print or electronic book, reposted on any other website, blog, or online platform, or otherwise monetized without the express written consent of its author(s).

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