-I don’t think anyone has ever been this deep into these swamps, Mark said, looking at the crocodiles between the cypresses growing out of the water.
-Probably not. Quite an adventure this…
-Turn! Fucking turn!
The boat cringed. Mark pushed the stick down into the soil. Pete and Billy held on to the edge, fighting to keep the boat straight.
A mountain of flesh and greenish skin emerged out of the water. It rose between the trees, mud running down its body. The stench was unbearable.
They got the boat half way around. The waves made the boat jump like a bob.
Splash. They lay in the water, the boat dipping nearby, turned around. Mark was spitting mud and water.
-Swim! Cough! Cough! Swim for your lives!
Big splashes threw them back and forth. Billy held onto some roots, pulled himself in between them. Staring in terror at scene evolving outside.
Mark was pulled under water. His lungs filled with dirt as he fought to get up. A claw came down on top of him, held him down. Lifted him up in the air. He dangled in front of the monster’s eyes for a while. Big jaws opened. Choking on the horrible breath he fell in between huge fangs and disappeared into the darkness.
Pete swam as fast as he could. He didn’t get far.
Jimmy dived under water. He could feel the currents when the monster searched under water like a dog looking for its ball, feeling around with its clawed hands and face. Billy reached another tree, swam in between the roots. Got his head up, gasped for air.
He lay still, hardly breathing. The swamp monster ran back and forth, muddling up the dirty water even more. It stopped, breathing heavily. It’s roar made the trees shiver before it turned back and disappeared into the hole it had emerged from.
Billy stayed a long time. He swam carefully out from his hiding pace, away from the place the monster had gone. Crossed the open water, into another tree. The swamp was deeper here, and he was tired. He swam towards a log floating out in the swamp.
The log moved. Another emerged from the water. The crocodiles were coming back.