Vain Speculation, or, A Firsthand Account of When the Cryptids Took Over

Before the world ended, people who talked about fey folk in their twitter bios had seemed just a little too precious.  When the bombs drove all cryptids from hiding, out of their bowers and drays in dark woods, their deep ocean trenches, their pueblos in fault lines and canyons, when all of this happened, the twitter nerds had kind of a moment.

It turned out that fairies and pixies and sprites were all the same thing, which scandalized some of our experts.   The bigfoot hunters, the yeti trackers, and squatch watchers, on the other hand, welcomed the news that their subjects all blended together.  For them, it was vindication of all the hard science they’d worked on for years.  “Of course they’re the same,” George Noory said. “Coast insiders have known that for ages.”

While the tsunamis revealed no true merpeople, the plesiosaurs did not disappoint. Nessie and Chessie and Champ had been on a sort of rumspringa, and, drunk on PCBs, vandalized General Electric.  Their pods still keep to what’s left of the ocean, and ask that we understand their position.  With the breakdown of manufacturing, they hope the end has come for garbage patches, the great plastic gyres, the chemical runoff most know us by. They’ve banned humankind from leaving all continental shelves, and have tasked river spirits with tracking our movements inland.  They encourage a thoughtful recovery. 

The fey folk took over education and politics, the great cryptid primates became shepherds and priests. The plesiosaurs, which, it turns out, really were what the Hebrew writers had seen in their visions, what the Vikings had modeled their longboats after, once allied with the rivers and streams, began to speak on behalf of the planet in intergalactic affairs.  This was the only fair move, and long overdue.  

Chris Cocca’s work has been published at Hobart, Brevity, Perhappened, Rejection Letters, Schuylkill Valley Journal and elsewhere.  He lives in Pennsylvania, patiently awaiting Belsnickel.

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