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[HAL2016] My Friend Rahti
So here we are again. Same night, same place, and same faces. Only 5 years removed from losing the one who changed our lives forever. 

Alex, he was he tough one. He always had your back no matter what hole you found yourself in. Em, she was wild one. Not afraid of anything and would never NEED to have your back, she usually solved the problem before it even bubbled over. Jake, well he was Em’s better half. Some thought he was the bastard son of the devil himself but those of us close to him knew that the devil didn’t stand a chance against him.

And me, DFC. My namesake came from this night but I’m not coward. Ducking at the right time saved the lives of 3 people…. but at the cost of one other. I won’t pretend this easy or noble, but we were in over our heads and I felt the only way out of this alive was let him do what he does best: protect us.

As the moon rose from the treetops and the alcohol fell from the can, our laughs and spoken memories filled the foggy trees of this land. 120 acres of nothing but forest, a quaint cabin on the dying river was our refuge from a life we wished would mimic these nights more and more. But as the evening wore on there was an unease among us all, for we knew in our hearts that one of us will fall. It was in cards, there was nothing we could do. We just enjoyed the night as much as we could and let fate crawl its’ way through.

“Rahti” was good soul. He never left our side and was cautiously eyeing the tree line as we laughed the night away. But in his eyes there was something eating at him. A cancer so profound we knew the week before that he had given up inside. He didn’t give up who he was, he was happier than ever to see his family each day, completely beside himself when we had to leave again, and a tough son of a bitch when he had to be.
But on this night, he was betrayed. He was betrayed by those who loved him best it seemed. The truth of the matter is Rahti would have it no other way. Survivors guilt only exists because those who have fallen never get to comfort them with the truth.

So when the creature’s eyes first pierced the night, first it was Em whispering “guys, guys!”. When Jake made eye contact he let out a gasp, and when Alex and I focused on the trees we were frozen.

It was tall, fit, and I dare say looked like a reptile. Standing on 2 legs it spread out those god-awful wings. As it barreled towards our fire we were frozen with fear until we hear that fateful sound. It was Rahti saying “I got this, RUN”. Rahti charged towards the trees but I was not far behind. I couldn’t leave my best friend to do this by himself.

But as he charged ahead I was grabbed from behind and brought to the ground. My friends were screaming RUN and they dragged me back to the cabin. Screaming out for Rahti was all I could do. When the door was shut behind me the house was quiet with fear. Em and Jake were shaking in the corner and Alex was loading up the elephant. A 45-70 that could bring down a bulldozer. But just as he got it loaded the door let out a “BANG”. I could hear the crying from Rahti, faint as it was, so I rushed to the door to let him in.

Bloodied and in a pain we carried him to the table but there was no doubt in my mind that this was the last we would see him. So while we all gathered around to try and say goodbye while making some kind of sense of what just happened, the doorway was filled with a terrifying sight. The creature that did this was walking like a trap ready to be sprung, through the narrow hall into the kitchen. Like a slow motion movie, he made the move.

I looked at Rahti, he closed his eyes. And when the creature pounced I dropped to the floor. While the creature grabbed Rahti and ran towards the door those wings came out again but we were helpless to stop it. BANG! BANG! The gun rang out in the cramped cabin. But it was too late.
The Highway 13 Reptile Man has struck again. In the middle of a no-name county in Wisconsin another victim was claimed. He saved our lives and deserves to be named. The creature wanted blood, nothing more nothing less. Rahti wanted to protect us, and gave the last bit of life he had left.

So here we are again. Same night, same place, and same faces. Only 5 years removed from losing the one who changed our lives forever.
As the beer gets cracked open and we remember our friend…..but what’s that noise???!!!

RIP Rahti – The legend says the creature is a sucker for deer. But here is confirmed victim #2

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OK, we need to track this mutha down!

Good Ol Rahti.

Nice One Duck!
Bravo, DFC!
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Great story!  Enjoyed it thoroughly.   minusculebeercheers
minusculeclap smallgreenhurray
Once A Rogue, Always A Rogue!
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Nice minusculebeercheers
A man's best friend. So true !

Great story ! I enjoyed the ending even if it's a sad one.


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