Jessica B. Bell would love your feedback! Got a few minutes to write a review?
Write a Review

CHUK

By Jessica B. Bell All Rights Reserved ©

Horror / Mystery

1 - Welcome to the Bayou

“Welcome to Bayou Bonhomme,” the thin man said with a toothy but debonair grin as he stood at the door, with perfect posture, ushering his guests into the small dining room that was never empty, rain or shine. “Welcome to Leroy’s Grill, home of Louisiana’s best barbecue.”

He’d almost look like a gentleman if he weren’t wearing an apron that was constantly smeared in barbecue sauce and grease. Leroy’s beloved mother had always told him that there was no excuse for poor manners, whether you were speaking in church or serving up barbecue, it didn’t matter. Do it all as unto Jesus, she’d say, and even though Leroy had seen things – some horrible, some incredible – since then that had made him question the whole Jesus thing, old habits die hard, and so Leroy honored his mère’s memory and her Creole heritage by always being polite to his guests.

Outwardly, Leroy was polite and courteous to the dozens of tourists that flooded through his doors each day, because that’s what his mère would want. But oh, if his mama only knew what he had to put up with each and every day, how he had to smile and laugh at the outsiders’ jokes – most of them at the expense of Leroy himself – or folks Leroy liked. They found the Cajun lingo some folks around the bayou spoke charming or quaint, and treated the people of Bonhomme like curiosities, which was really just city folk’s way of looking down their noses at the Creoles and the Cajuns. City folk watched too many movies, and seemed to have a picture of what the bayou should be like, and Leroy was happy to oblige them so long as they had money to spend. Leroy could put on the heavy Cajun accent when he needed to, and could even drop in a smattering of French words for authenticity – after all, his grand-mère had been Creole, and not one word in three that came out of her mouth was English.

The tourists came from all over – some folks from as far away as Texas or Florida – heck, there was even one couple made it all the way down from Kentucky last summer – drawn by the legend of the green man – Ol’ Remy LeVert as he was known around these parts. Things had been slow for the past few months, but then that little boy and his dog had gone missing, a couple of weeks back. While the proper newspapers were writing it up as a likely gator attack, The Bonhomme Gazette had run the headline Legendary Swamp Monster Returned? This had infuriated Oscar Blanchette, the Chief of police, but Amie LeBeau insisted that the presence of a question mark indicated that she was merely speculating on what she thought was a viable possibility, and Oscar only scowled at her and prepared himself for the tourist invasion. As expected, the monster hunters and gawkers had swarmed into Bonhomme like flies to shit, and Bonhomme welcomed them with open, hungry arms. The people of Bonhomme were, as a rule, flat broke. Remy LeVert was the town’s meal ticket, and so the coals of the legend needed to be turned from time to time to keep the fire burning.

There were Remy LeVert t-shirts and bumper stickers to be sold, and anyone with a boat was hiring it out for tours of the bayou. Tourists lined up for hours to take one of these tours with old Jean-Baptiste Levesque – not a tooth left in the old man’s head, but he made himself understood well enough when he gave a tour of the swamp and told the story of the angry old swamp god that the first peoples called C’thuN’Chuk, which, he said, meant “The Good Man” – hence the name of the town. The truth is, ol’ Jean-Baptiste was one hell of a yarn-spinner, and if any of the tourists recognized that his stories were basically a jambalaya of H.P. Lovecraft, Len Wein, Ramsey Campbell and Stephen King, well, they never let on. After all, that kind of melangerie was all part of the Creole tradition.

There was even a sign as you entered the town proclaiming Bonhomme as the home of the legendary swamp monster, and some local kid had drawn a picture of Remy, though it was really just a drawing taken from an old Swamp Thing comic. If Bernie Wrightson, the man who had actually helped create the comic book character, ever came to town, well, the folks of Bonhomme could only hope he’d be flattered and not litigious.

Leroy passed that sign every day and shook his head every time and laughed, because Leroy knew first hand that Ol’ Remy didn’t look anything like that.
Continue Reading Next Chapter
Further Recommendations

kotabsavage91: This young author really knows her stuff. From the 1st chapter I was sucked in and entertained the book. The characters are rich and well thought out and the plot keeps you guessing all the way through to an imaginatively well exacuted showdown. Keep up the great work, I look forward to more of ...

Spring: I normally don't read fiction novels, but I absolutely enjoyed reading Silent Shadows! The style is quite different from the previous fiction novels I've attempted to read.Great job!

Aishwarya pillai: This is one story I have put my full interest intoBest novel ever!!! Without a doubt 😍😙😍😍❤💋

Ginger: I like the idea behind this; the idea and story itself are great, However, I'm finding typos periodically and some of the sentences could be worded a bit more clearly. You might want to 'show' a little more than you 'tell,'

SeanSavage: Good plot that moves fairly quickly. Time passage somewhat vague. but not indecipherable. Very good syntax, grammar and punctuation. The story flowed very well, however, the breaks between chapters and the time jumps tended to be slightly confusing at first. I could see where the author was going...

DarkWolf .12: Very interesting plot! Had me up for the entire night. Keep up the good work 👍

William Elliott Kern: Long story, the plot uncovered midway through the story. From beginning, the story was fast moving. Then dragged on for quite some time. The Author was good in describing her characters, their clothing, etc. but a lot of that disclosure distracted from the story moving fast.Not withstanding, the...

Nishant Jain: I felt as if i am watching a movie,not reading a book. The story was definitely interesting. It was more of action than horror for me. There are a few grammatical and spelling errors I came across and at times I found it difficult to imagine some things which the author is trying to convey, but o...

More Recommendations

Deleted User: Your San Quentin episode cuts an incredible parallel to something with which I am involved. Sounds real enough. Read just the four chapters thus far. Looking forward to continuing. Roy Jenner.https://www.inkitt.com/royjennerFinished now, Great read. Well done Steve.Enjoyed it to the end.re Plot...

iann4701: I'm no expert but I know when I have read a good book and this was one. From the beginning it had me wondering where it was going next and what the outcome would be. If you fancy a read with a slightly different perspective from the norm then I would certainly give this book a read. I will look o...

debmart6901: I could not put this story down. I stayed up reading when I should have been in bed. could not get enough, could not wait to find how it ended. Great story telling. Great detail. Loved it. The characters were very vivid.

Jim E. Johnson: Rarely do I find a mystery that peeks my interest, but Jack Huber's Pat Ruger reminds me of Parker's Spenser or Spillane's Hammer! Strong character with the right connections and plot drivers to keep anyone engaged and never putting it down.The encounters of the characters Ruger engages, continue...

C.K. Bachman: Just read the first chapter. Love how the main character thinks and is conflicted over his wife and the trickery he uses on her.

{{ contest.story_page_sticky_bar_text }} Be the first to recommend this story.

About Us:

Inkitt is the world’s first reader-powered book publisher, offering an online community for talented authors and book lovers. Write captivating stories, read enchanting novels, and we’ll publish the books you love the most based on crowd wisdom.