The Missing Bride


It was a slow day. The kind of day that made you stretch out wide and yawn more than once. Dandy was sitting at his desk, trying his best simply to stay awake. He hadn’t had a case all week. Nothing strange, unusual, or heavy enough to question the fabric of reality. In summation, he was bored. The sun was high in the sky when the Detective decided to get up and take a short stroll. He had no destination in mind, but surely it was better than just sitting around waiting for something, anything, to happen. 

Once he got downstairs from his office, he noticed the friendly mailwoman putting letters away in the lobby mailboxes. 

“Prudence.” Dandy said, tipping his white Panama hat in the woman’s direction.

“Ah, good morning, Detective.” Prudence replied with a smile. 

“Anything good for me today?” Dandy asked. Prudence shuffled the envelopes in her hands. 

“Actually, just one thing. Looks like a letter. Hey, maybe it’s a case.” She said with excitement. 

“For my sake, I hope so. Thank you kindly.” he said, reaching out to retrieve the letter. He tapped the envelope against the palm of his hand, anxious to open it. He bid Prudence farewell and walked back up to the second floor, where his office was settled, and swung the door open. He placed his hat on the stand right next to the door and took a seat at his desk. He dug around to find a letter opener and slit the envelope open neatly. It was a handwritten note on a lined piece of paper. Upon reading the greeting, he knew exactly who had sent this letter. 

“Dear Boss,” it began. Dandy stroked his white mustache. 

“Ah, it’s from my old friend Goemz.” he said with a grin. He hadn’t seen or heard from the little man with the thin black mustache since the incident with the blob monster at the hotel. What some would call Dandy’s last “vacation.” But Dandy himself labeled it nothing more than a sheer disaster in an attempt to relax. Dandy leaned in, wondering what his friend had to say. He continued to read the letter. 

“I hope this letter finds you well. I am, unfortunately, writing to seek your help. You are the only detective I know, and the only one who could handle something like this.” Dandy sat straight up, seeing that his old ally was in some sort of trouble. 

“You see,” the letter read, “it was not long after the incident at the hotel that I left and found another line of work in a small town called Swanson’s Point. There I met a girl named Letitia. Soon, we fell in love and not long after that, we were engaged. I will spare too many details, boss, you know how the heart works. It’s a funny, funny thing. We wanted to get married and leave Swanson’s Point for a bigger city to call home. But then, Letitia disappeared. The other night I called her and there was no answer. So I went to her house. Someone had broken in. There was glass everywhere and the signs of a struggle. She was nowhere to be found.” Dandy, reading intently, flipped the letter over and continued reading. 

“Oh boss, they talk about some kind of…monster, living in the swamp just outside of Swanson’s Point. And when they say there is a monster, I know there is only one man I can call for help; the great Detective Dandy. I must have your assistance in locating my missing bride to be, the love of my life. Enclosed is my address as well as a plane ticket. Please make haste, boss! Your friend, Gomez.”

Dandy stared at the letter in his hands for a few moments, soaking in what he had read. 

“A monster in the swamp, well that’s a new one.” He said finally. He stood up and faced the window, ticket clutched in his hand. He closed his eyes hard and saw a face. It was a face he had loved many years ago. A face he had lost. His Catherine. He had felt the passion of love, the truest sort of love that, in his mind, only came once. And he had lost it. And thus, he knew exactly how Gomez felt, the emptiness that he faced. From this feeling came the answer. It was obvious. And besides that, in his line of work, he didn’t have many friends. It was his duty to help Gomez. To spare another soul the all consuming pain that came with losing the one you loved. He would do all he could to prevent Goemz from walking the path that he himself was forced to take. 

He spun on his heels, grabbing his hat on the way out of the office. With haste, he would make his way home and pack what belongings he needed for a quick flight down south. There was no time to waste. He jumped into his silver car and headed to his house, wondering, all the way, just how does one dress for the swamp? 


The plane touched down about twenty miles outside of the small town of Swanson’s Point. Dandy stepped off and was immediately hit by the humid air, as though he had run dead stop into a wall of heat. He had, thankfully, abandoned his pale gray suit for cargo shorts and a red floral shirt, though he still clung to his white Panama hat, figuring it would give him a hint of shade. 

Amidst the hustle and bustle of folks at the airport, he was able to spot Gomez, though he was a short man, looking around for the Detective. Gomez had his hands in his pocket, looking back and forth. Finally he made eye contact with Dandy.

“Gomez,” said the Detective, extending his hand, “good to see you again.” However, Gomez ignored the handshake and went in for a tight hug. 

“Oh boss, I’m so happy you’re here, thank you so much for coming.” Gomez exclaimed. He squeezed the old man, and in return, Dandy patted Gomez on the back, not entirely sure as to what his course of action should be, trapped in the other man’s embrace. 

“There, there, Gomez, it’s alright.” Dandy said after a moment of uncomfortable silence, Gomez with his arms still around him. Finally, Gomez disengaged the old man and looked up, eyes watering. 

“You got my letter and you came all this way, thank you.” Then he took a deep breath. “Do you think anything bad happened to her? Tell me the truth.”

“Gomez, I–”

“What does your gut say, boss?” Gomez cut in. Dandy thought for a moment, smoothing out his bushy white mustache. 

“I think we’ll find her,” he said with confidence. Though inside he was anything but confident. A missing person was hard to find. Especially living. And in terrain like a swamp, he knew the odds were against him. But, looking down at Gomez, he knew he couldn’t betray the truth. Gomez jumped into the air. 

“I knew you’d say that, boss. I knew it.” He exclaimed. Excited, the little man turned away from the old Detective. “Come on, this way to the car.” Dandy followed the little man to his vehicle, a worn orange VW Beetle. 

“The, uh, Gomez Mobile?” Dandy ventured. The other man let out a little grin. 

“You said it.” Gomez enthusiastically hopped into the front seat as Dandy loaded his luggage in the back of the car. Driving around, it seemed they were riding an orange to town, as if they had just rolled out of a fruit basket. 

Along the way, there was silence. Between Dandy taking in the scenery as they drove, and Gomez worrying for his bride to be, no one said a word. Finally, Dandy cleared his throat. 

“So, Gomez, how did you two meet?” he asked. Gomez smiled. 

“Ah, it was after I left the hotel, you know? I came here to Swanson’s Point to start over. A horrible thing like the hotel, I wanted to leave it all behind. So I found myself here. Well, one day I walk into the coffee shop and there she is, the most beautiful woman in the world, working right behind the counter.” Gomez sighed, remembering the scene from their first meeting. 

“And so the rest is history, as they say.” Dandy said with a grin.

“Well, it took me a month to work up the courage to talk to her, but then once we started talking, it was like we’d known each other all of our lives.” Gomez smiled, gripping the wheel tightly. 

“So tell me a little about her. And what happened. When did she go missing?” Asked Dandy.

“Well, let’s see…” Gomez thought for a moment. “Oh, you might know her father, Sam Hart, the famous master of monster makeup. He’s worked on a lot of movies. She can do some impressive stuff because of that, too. And…she–” he choked on his words for a moment. “She went missing five days ago, boss. I called and called, and then I checked in on her place. No one was around, but there were such signs of a struggle…” he frowned heavily. 

“It’s OK, Gomez, why don’t you start by taking me to her house?” suggested Dandy. “We can see what we’ll find.”

The two men pulled up to Letitia’s home in little under half an hour. Gomez led them in and Dandy immediately began looking around for clues. Gomez had been correct, there were definite signs of a struggle. Objects knocked around, things out of place, and the back sliding door had been broken, shards of glass still laying on the carpet. However, Gomez had neglected to mention the foot prints. 

“Let’s have a look at these.” Dandy said, leaning in. They were big, muddy boot prints produced by a man of considerable size. They came in through the broken door, to the kitchen, where several objects were knocked about, clearly the area of the struggle, and circled back out again. As Dandy studied the prints, the front door to the house opened. A portly man in a sheriff’s uniform entered. 

“Ah, Gomez, you’re still here.” said the sheriff. He looked at Dandy. “Oh, you brought a friend.” The sheriff eyed the Detective. “Sheriff Landon Myers, who might you be?” 

“Detective John Dandy.” Dandy said, pulling out his credentials. The sheriff scanned them over. 

“Ah, a private eye from the big city. I guess we can’t handle this case alone, eh, Gomez?” The sheriff said with an ironic grin. Gomez shook his head.

“It’s not like that, it’s just…there’s a monster involved!’ That’s what everyone is saying! And this man, he deals with monsters, isn’t that right, boss?” Gomez said with a proud smile. 

“That’s right, I deal with all kinds of strange things.” Dandy said, nodding his head. He had immediately taken a dislike to the fat sheriff before him, though he couldn’t exactly say why. There was something off about him. He looked at Gomez. “Now, tell me about your resident monster, if you would.” 

“When I moved here, I heard rumors, but I never believed them. They say there is some horrible creature that lives in the swamp. Something that used to be a man. A man who…who became one with the swamp somehow. I just laughed it off, you know? I mean what are the odds of a person running into two monsters in one lifetime?” he asked. Then, staring at Dandy, he quickly added, “present company excluded.” 

“Have you or your men followed these tracks?” Dandy asked the sheriff, pointing to the ground.

“Of course we have.” the sheriff scoffed. “We have men searching the swamp right now.” Dandy pointed in the direction of the foot prints. 

“So, the swamp is that way?” he asked. Myers nodded. Dandy began to follow them, walking in the direction the sheriff had indicated. There was another policeman out examining the footprints. The policeman looked up, past Dandy. Dandy had an uneasy feeling about the men and looked back quickly. He could see the sheriff cover his left eye with one hand. The other policeman nodded and got up, walking toward the swamp. As Dandy went to follow him, Gomez came in swinging his arms wildly.

“You can’t go in the swamp, boss, it’s too dangerous. You don’t even have a gun!” Dandy looked at the little man and closed his eyes tight. Again he saw her. His fair haired Catherine, with her smile. The smile that had been etched on to his memory. The only smile he had ever loved. 

“If that’s where this investigation leads, that’s where I have to go.” Dandy said grimly. 

“But I can’t let you take that risk, you could die out there. Monster or no, there’s all kinds of danger out there.” Gomez protested. “I can’t let you risk your life for me like that.” The old Detective swirled around to face Gomez. “Why go in there for me?” asked the little man.

“Life is too damn short and…” he choked for a moment, thinking of Catherine, then swallowed the lump in his throat, “and it’s too damn long to spend by yourself.” he began to trudge off toward the swamp.

“Wait.” Cried Gomez as he shuffled to catch up to the Detective. “If you’re going in, well, then I’m going with you, boss.” Dandy gave a firm nod. “That was a really profound thing you said back there, boss. Spoken like someone who really cares for me. Like a friend.” 

“Well,” said Dandy with a smirk, “you’re also a paying customer.” 


As the pair came to the edge of the swamp, it was by pure good fortune alone that they ran across a small boat. 

“Perfect.” Said Dandy. He began to push the boat out into the murky water. 

“We’re just going to steal someone’s boat?” Gomez asked. 

“We’ll return it.” Replied the Detective. “We won’t get far without one.”

“And you just want to go into the swamp? I don’t like it there.” Gomez said, shivering. 

“Well,” Dandy said pointing to the ground, “this is where the footprints stop, so whoever is behind this is out there somewhere.” Dandy said. After a moment, Gomez jumped into the boat, too.

“I don’t like boats too much, either,” Gomez added.

“It’s our only way to search the swamp.” Dandy said with a friendly smile. “You notice we’re the only ones out here, too. Curious, don’t you think? Where are the police?”

“Maybe they already went out here or maybe…” Gomez swallowed hard, “maybe they didn’t come back.” 

“Let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Maybe they came out here and, more than likely, found nothing. Or they’re lazy. Or both.” Dandy concluded. 

“What exactly are we looking for, Detective?” asked Gomez. Dandy looked from side to side. 

“Anything out of the ordinary, a sign of disturbance. But I admit, I overestimated myself, this is all beginning to look the same to me.” He squinted, looking around, trying to see if he could find any broken branches or upset vegetation. “Ah, over there.” He said, after many minutes of scanning the swamp. Off to the left there was a pile of floating sticks, and they looked as though they had been broken from the trees around them. He paddled closer to examine them.

“What’s this?” Gomez asked. 

“Looks like these branches were all broken off in some kind of disturbance” He continued ahead. 

“The water is getting shallower.” Observed Gomez. 

“There, ahead of us, a cabin.” There in the clearing of the swamp stood a solitary wood cabin, run over with moss and foliage. 

“Could someone be living out here? Who would do that?” asked Gomez.

“Clearly someone who wanted to be away from people. For one reason or another.” Dandy replied. He slowed the boat to a halt as it approached the ramshackle cabin. 

“Are we…are we going in, boss?” Gomez asked with fear in his voice. 

“Could be a lead. Way out here, secluded like this…it’s the only thing we’ve encountered so far. I think it’s our best option.” Dandy docked the boat and looked around slowly, trying to see what he might discover. “Footprints.” he said to himself. Large, wet footprints led up to the cabin door. He walked up to it and knocked. There was no response. He knocked again, and still nothing happened. He tried the handle and felt that the door was unlocked. He looked back at Gomez. 

“I’m going in.” He said. Slowly, he opened the door, looking from left to right. There was no one inside the cluttered and decrepit cabin. Moving ahead, he found a small fireplace, there were logs in it, unused but, he could tell, fresh. There was no question, someone had been here but they had been gone for at least a day. There was unfinished coffee and a half eaten plate of food sitting out. Finally, Gomez came creeping in behind the Detective. 

“Find anything, boss?” He asked. Dandy shook his head. 

“I’m afraid nothing has revealed itself to me yet. But someone was here recently.” The Detective continued to rummage around. Finally he set eyes on a desk at the back of the room. Sitting on top was an old photo. It depicted a smiling couple. A woman with dark skin, big brown eyes, and long black hair. Beside her, a man with blond hair and bright blue eyes, piercing even in a picture. He turned the photo around. 

“To my dear Alan, the love of my life. Don’t forget that day on the lake. Love, Moira” As he was examining the photo, Gomez peered over Dandy’s shoulder. 

“That looks just like Letitia! The resemblance is uncanny.” Gomez said. 

“One of these two must have owned this cabin, but by the looks of it, and the worn condition of this photo, they haven’t been around for quite some time.” Dandy was puzzled, wondering just where these two fit into the big picture. He tapped his foot. 

“Now what’s this?” Dandy asked, looking down at his feet. 

“It’s a rug.” Gomez said, confused. 

“But it looks so much newer than the rest of the place. Look, not a speck on it. Now observe.” he said, yanking at the rug. Beneath it there lay a square door. 

A secret door.” Gomez exclaimed. Dandy rubbed his hands together with a grin. 

“I’ve always wanted to discover one.” he said with glee. Dandy flung open the door to a pair of steps and a consuming darkness. 

“I can’t see a thing,” began Gomez, rifling around his pockets, “good think I have this flashlight.” 

“Good thinking.” said the Detective, grabbing it from Gomez. “I’ll go first.” Gingerly, Dandy walked down the steps, each one creaking under his weight. About halfway down the stairs there was noise behind them. The pair turned swiftly. Up at the top of the steps was a big, burly man with an eyepatch over his left eye. 

“Don’t move, either of you.” he commanded. 

“And who are you?” asked Dandy, raising an eyebrow. 

“The name’s Scorby, but more importantly, I’m the one with the gun.” Scorby said, flashing the pistol in his hand. 

“That gun…I’ve–” began Dandy.

“Quiet.” Scorby roared, pointing the gun at them.Gomez threw his hands up in surrender. Sowly, the big man plodded down the stairs. “Alright,” he barked, “both of you, forward march. Hands up and don’t make any sudden movements.” He cocked the gun and dug the barrel into Gomez’s back.

“I think he means business, boss.” Gomez choked out.

“Alright,” dandy said, slowly raising his arms. He leered at Scorby. “But be sure to watch your step.”


At the bottom of the stairs the one eyed man grabbed a chain and yanked on it, filling the room with light. Dandy shielded his eyes from the sudden burst, then, as his vision slowly adjusted to the illumination, saw a huddled figure in the corner. 

“Just what are you doing out here?” Dandy asked Scorby. 

“Quiet you, get in the corner.” He responded. The pair shuffled toward their intended spot. It was here that Gomez let out a cry.

“Letitia!” he exclaimed, kneeling down to examine the woman in the corner. Dandy looked down at her, there she was, the bride to be. He looked for a pulse. 

“She’s alive,” he concluded. “Just weak.” Gomez let out a moan of agony as he cradled Letitia in his arms. 

“Oh Gomez,” she said softly, touching his face, “I’m so glad to see you.”

“Everyone be quiet.” Demanded Scorby. He thought for a moment. 

“So you’re the big bad kidnapper, huh?” Dandy asked, stepping forward. “I noticed your boots, big and covered in mud, just what I was looking for. I’d hazard a guess–” 

“Shut up, old man!” Scorby spat. 

“Now don’t interrupt me, son.” Dandy said firmly. The man with the gun took a step back. “When we examined the house, it didn’t seem like anything was missing. But what the police overlooked, but I however did not, was that all the makeup was missing. The entire bathroom was cleaned out of any sort of makeup product. Not even a single brush left behind.”

“How did you notice that?” asked the cyclops, curious.

“Because I use my eyes, son.” Dandy said, taunting the one eyed man. “Now, let me guess, you and whoever you’re working with, because you, son, are what they call muscle, not brains, kidnapped this poor girl to help you create the illusion of a monster. A fine makeup artist like her, you and your partners figured you could get her to make you up like some movie monster, like her dear old dad could. Couple that with a few sightings of the “swamp monster” that lurks in these parts and you’d get people scared, right, son? Scare the people away, get them off the land.” Dandy shook his head. 

“It’s true.” Cried Letitia. “Only I couldn’t do what they wanted. The level of design they wanted, it would be impossible without a studio. So they locked me down here.” 

“How could you possibly know that, old man?” The big man said with a grimace. 

“Because I’ve seen it before.” Dandy replied. 

“You have, boss?” asked Gomez, astonished. 

“Yes,” the Detective began, “on every episode of Scooby Doo.” He let out a wry smile. A streak of red ran across Scorby’s face. “So you run the people out of Swanson’s point. To what end?” Dandy asked. 

“You already have enough information, so much I can’t let you leave, in fact.” He raised the gun.

“Help!” Letitia yelled. Dandy stood firmly between the couple and Scorby, sweat forming on his brow. Suddenly, from behind them, there came a great thumping. The wall began to shake and everyone in the room turned to see what was happening. Then, swiftly, a mighty green fist ripped through the stone wall separating them from the swamp. A moment later, another huge green hand ripped through and tore out the wall. Scorby let out a scream.

“It’s real! No, it can’t be!” He stammered, retreating a few steps. Just then a bright blue pair of eyes pierced one of the holes that had been created and whatever was out there, was looking in now. Then putting both hands together it let out a wail and smashed another hole in the wall, making room for its huge body to come lumbering into the cellar. 

It stood before them now, a green and brown behemoth, covered in dirt and moss, leaves and vegetation, breathing slowly. It stank of the swamp. No one dared move, in case the thing took action. Finally, after what seemed an eternity, Scorby aimed the gun and fired. 

But the bullet simply sank into the creature, who barely even recoiled from the force of the hit. It looked down at the small hole that had been created, then back at the man who had made it, and slowly plodded forward. Scorby let out a yell and ran for the stairs. He moved faster than his big form should have allowed him. The great green monster hurdled up the stairs after him, reaching out. He grasped Scorby’s foot, causing the large man to trip. Smacking his chin on the stairs, he was dazed. But only for a moment. He regained his senses long enough to spin around and open fire on the beast. 

“Die! Die” Scorby yelled as he emptied the gun. But it was no use. Bullets did nothing to this swamp thing. Slowly, it lifted Scorby above its head, the big man squirming, struggling the entire way. 

“Put me down, put me down you abomination, put me–” but his last words were cut off, the giant monster bringing the man soaring down, right across his bent knee. A mighty snapping sound was heard. Scorby’s back, breaking in half. With a muffled sound of pain, Scorby went limp. The monster raised him once more above its head and threw the motionless body down the stairs. It tumbled and thudded horribly as it hit the bottom of the steps. Everyone remained quiet. Finally, Dandy approached Scorby to examine him.

“Dead.” he said. He leaned down and noticed, sticking out of the back pocket of Scorby’s pants, a piece of paper. He quickly grabbed it, scanning the words before him.”Of course.” he said, tucking the paper away in his shorts pocket. Then he looked up to the top of the stairs, the great mossy monster was nowhere to be seen.

“Where did it go?” asked Letitia.

“I can’t tell, but I’m going up to see what I can find out.” Slowly, Dandy crept up the steps, and halted at the top. He looked around and could see no trace of the monster, other than a totally splintered doorway. 

“Is the coast clear, boss?” asked Gomez from the bottom of the steps. 

“I…I think so.” Dandy replied. He motioned for the couple to come up after him. They cautiously climbed the stairs. At the top, as the sign of all danger being cleared, the two finally embraced. 

“Oh, I thought I lost you.” cried Gomez, wrapping Letitia in a tight hug. She simply responded by hugging him back. 

“I think we can get out of here now.” suggested the old Detective. Gingerly he stepped onto the boat and motioned for the couple to follow him. Then suddenly, quicker than lightning, the monster returned. Reemerging from the bubbling swampy water, grabbing the boat and tipping it over. Dandy landed in the ooze with a splash. 

“Boss!” cried Gomez. But the monster was upon them. He swatted Gomez aside like a fly, causing the man to land roughly on the ground. Then he came to Letitia, who fell backward in fear. He cocked his head to one side and leaned in to look at her closely, his bright blue eyes darting around her features. Then, almost tenderly, he placed his hand on her cheek.

“Alan!” cried Dandy, now on his knees, reaching out in desperation to the monster. “Alan it’s not her!” the creature whipped its head toward Dandy.

“Al…an…” it managed to say. Dandy fished the photograph of the young couple from the desk out of his pocket. 

“It’s not Moira.” He said, shaking his head with a frown. The monster left Letitia and closed in toward Dandy. Sadly it fumbled for the photo, its big green fingers unable to hold something small with any grace.

“Moira…” it said. “…Moira.” the creature let out a howl of pain. 

“I know what it’s like.” Dandy said. “To lose someone. To lose yourself. I know the emptiness you feel when the thing that gives you reason to get up in the morning is suddenly gone.” Dandy choked back his emotion. “I know what it means to be alone!” the monster slunk back, breathing hard. “Whatever happened to you, whatever turned you into this, whatever happened to her…son, I know…there are worse things than death in this life.” The monster let out a saddened cry, throwing his head back like a wolf to the moon. Then, spinning around, taking one last look at Letitia, he ran back into the oozy waters of the swamp, submerging until he disappeared completely. Gomez looked around in complete awe. 

“Is it over, boss?” he asked finally. 

“Just one more thing.” Dandy said, digging the letter he had retrieved from Scorby out of his pocket. “Just one more thing.”


Back on solid ground in good old Swanson’s Point, Dandy, looking and smelling like a swamp, his favorite pair of shorts and floral shirt ruined, stormed into the small police department. Sitting behind his desk, Sheriff Myers shot up and tried to put a smile on his face. 

“Detective, er, to what do I owe the pleasure?” He asked. 

“Let’s not play games any longer.” Dandy demanded. He thrust the letter down on the desk before the doughy sheriff.

“And what is this?” Myers asked, looking at the note in front of him. 

“If you read it, I think you’ll find it has something to do with this.” Out of his pocket Dandy fished an eyepatch and threw it down on the desk beside the letter. The sheriff turned white. 

“An…an eye patch. I don’t understand.” he said feebly.

“Given that you wrote that letter yourself and you hired Scorby, your cyclopean muscle, I think you do understand. 

“What are you trying to say?” the sheriff snarled. 

“This letter plainly states that you and several of your officers hired Scroby to scare the people of Swanson’s Point out of their homes. A big man like Scorby, he was to pose as the monster of legend around these parts. You were trying to get rid of everyone so you could help big land developers come down here and you’d all get rich. Your mistake was double: hiring Scorby, who kept excellent records,” he said, tapping the letter, “and crossing me.” Dandy spat. The sheriff eyed the letter then the eyepatch.

“So you figured it out, old boy.” the sheriff said shakily. “What happened to Scorby?”

“Something terrible, I assure you.” Dandy replied. “The gig is up now, sheriff. I suggest you  get out of town before I make this letter known to every news media outlet there is around these parts.” Dandy said. 

“I–” the sheriff began.

“I suspected you from the start, you know? Canvassing the area by yourself, dirt under your fingernails from the swamp, mud on your boots just the same way. Then when there were no cops out scouring the area for Letitia, I knew something was wrong. And sheriff, giving Scorby your gun…” He pointed to the man’s empty holster. “I noticed it was the same one right away. That’s what really did you in. You had it on you when we met, a pearl handle. A real nice piece, but rare around here, I bet.” The sheriff eyed him with disgust. 

“That ain’t my only gun.” he said, reaching into his desk. But before he could pull it out, a rock came hurling across the room, landing square against the sheriff’s head. Dazed, the fat man fell backwards in his seat, unconscious. Dandy spun around to see Gomez with a smirk on his face. 

“I’m a deadeye, boss, a crack shot.” Dandy shook his head. 

“I had the situation under control.” He replied dryly. 

“You did?” Gomez asked, surprised. 

“Well,” Dandy sighed, “I could always use a little help from my friends.” 


Some months later, Dandy found himself back in the small town of Swanson’s Point. The day had come for the wedding between Gomez and Letitia and, of course, he was on the guest list. The day was beautiful, a cool spring day, not too hot, not too cold. A slight breeze skirted through the air. Most importantly, the day went off without a hitch. There were no kidnappings, no armed goons, no corrupt sheriffs. Everything in the town had gone back to normal, no one was driven off their property by a one eyed swamp monster. 

The bride and groom drove away in their car, as much in love as anyone had ever been, including Dandy himself.

With a smile he looked down at the photo of Catherine he kept in his left breast pocket, remembering their own wedding, and how wonderful that day had been. If only she had been here now. If only…but it was no good to dwell, not on such a happy day. He had hugged Gomez and Letitia before they had left, and headed toward his rental car. The party had broken up and it was time to go home. 

Though alone in his car with nothing but his thoughts, swimming in memories of love and monsters, Dandy would swear that, as he drove away, he could see, from his rear view mirror piercing out of the small wooded area behind the chapel, a pair of bright blue eyes, staring into infinity.