Wednesday, 26 October 2016

The Hunter's Guide to Monsters - Chapter Nine

It is said that there are some things worse than death . . . tonight, we meet one of them.  Feel pain, panic and pity for the tortured soul we call 'CHUPACABRAS':

Chupacabras /chū'pəkahbrə/ n. 1. A legendary creature in the folklore of parts of the Americas, supposed to attack and drink the blood of livestock, especially goats..

9. Chupacabras
  by Hunter Jeremiah

A rare and unusual monster, the chupacabras is a disturbing freak of nature with a dreadful history. For ages and ages, it was believed that the chupacabras was a result of satanists or Native American lingerlings or even misremembered nightmares from R-rated sci-fi horror movies. But the truth is more unusual than that. Also known as a ghoul, grunch, hodag, jersey devil, wechuge or wendigo
The chupacabras is in fact a mutation of the werewolf, caused by vampire venom. The unusual, metamorphic bone structure of a werewolf causes the teratogenic properties of the venom of grow sharp spines from the backbone, hair loss, muscular deterioration, ichthyosis, ocular dilation & hyperphagia.
So, the chupacabras has skinny arms and legs and often gaunt facial features. They will have patchy hair, and scaly often discoloured skin. Their hindlegs are often weakened, forcing them to run on all fours or hop like a kangaroo, and their heads will often have sunken eyes and retracted lips, exposing gums and jagged teeth, and they usually have long claws on their thin fingers and toes.
They also occasionally, but not always, have a tail.
The chupacabras is, in fact, sick; and a form sickness. If you are in any way bitten or scratched by the spines of these creatures, or even if you accidentally touch, consume or inhale any of the creature's bodily fluids, you too will be infected with this horrific and painful mutation. Whilst I pity the poor creatures that suffer from this disturbing sickness, they are incredibly dangerous and must be put out of their misery.
If the wretched hands of twisted pain, can scratch your flesh or mark your veins, as the sickness torments once again - you'll be screaming for a Hunter to put you down.

It is actually incredibly rare for a bitten werewolf to become a chupacabras. It requires a weakened and vulnerable werewolf to be bitten, and injected with a large amount of venom whilst the werewolf is in their animal form for them to succumb to the venom. But, since vampires tend not to bite werewolves and werewolves are naturally strong enough to overcome the bite in most cases, it is theorized by monster scholars that the chupacabras is in fact, a war orphan.
They believe that this mutation is the result of the centuries-old war between vampires and werewolves, since for a very, very long time, werewolves and vampires have been bitter enemies; and especially during the dark ages, it became a very bloody and vicious war. It is believed that, in an attempt to turn the tide, vampires attempted to infect the wolven victims of these wars, which resulted in the chupacabras being born. At the time, they were called "lamia", but unfortunately, this threat was not contained as the chupacabras is a virulent pest. It has been entirely destroyed within the British Isles and Oceania remains quarantined to these beasts; however, it is still a threat in the Americas, and has even been sighted in parts of Europe.
I find the history fascinating, but I tell you about their past for two important reasons. Firstly, these are not natural-born creatures, they don't act natural. They don't just eat for food, they don't nest or sleep and they don't attack if they feel threatened. These creatures are voracious and eat even even when their stomachs distend; they never sleep, only ever collapse or revert back to human form and they attack for almost no reason, often because they are in pain and lash out in anger and agony.
The second thing is, they are a mutated child of werewolf and vampire. They are not the beloved children of this pairing, but an unwanted freak. While they have aspects of both, they also have aspects of neither; as I just mentioned, they can revert to human form much like the werewolf, and they prey on the living much like the vampire. But, unlike the vampire, they hunger for more than just blood, often consuming blood and organs as well; and in some cases, even try to consume mud, rotten plants, glass, garbage, torn clothing, old newspaper . . . pretty much anything they can cram down their throat, their hunger is not restricted to food, they eat out of desperation. They kill out of anger, not food, they just eat the remains from starvation.
Also, unlike the werewolf, they cannot control this transformation at all, as it is triggered by hunger for flesh, and only once they have overeaten and are exhausted do they fall unconscious and return to their previous form; but, because human beings are not designed to digest large amounts of raw blood, flesh and bone (or the other non-digestible things that chupacabras feast on) a chupacabras in human form will often suffer from stomach pains, sickness, neurological issues and delirium following a transformation.
They change back into their chupacabras form when they are hungry, and when the sun is down; they do not return to human form during the day, only when hungry, but they cannot become chupacabras in the daylight.

These are wild and unusual monsters; however, just as a virus has common symptoms, and a rabid dog has common behaviours, although they act unnaturally, they can be predictable. These are some of the basic foundations of Chupacabras Psychology, which determine how a chupacabras acts:
- If it's Food, Eat it. Chupacabras are always hungry, and this is their drive. Find it, eat it. Nowhere in there does it say "cook it", they don't care, they just want to eat everything. And to them, pretty much everything is food.
- If it's Moving, Kill it. Chupacabras are always in pain due to their form, this makes them incredibly agitated and angry, and if something is near they kill it, out of anger and fear. But this applies to trees, grass and water, if it moves they attack.
- If it's Still, Grab it. Chupacabras are actually naturally curious, they have a human brain and claws which they use to investigate anything they come across, so they try to pick it up. Some consider this one of their few human characteristics.
- If You Grab it, it's Food. Unfortunately, their curiosity always comes second to their appetite, and if it's in their hand, it will probably fit in their mouth, so they will try to eat it.
These are, however, three corollary notions that drive their actions:
+ Cold is Scary. They never "seek out" heat, but they avoid cold, especially cold water.
+ Everything is New. They can only remember something if they are looking at it.
+ It Hurts. They are in pain, this leads to erratic shrieking, flinching and mood swings.
If you know how chupacabras think, then you're one step closer to knowing how to handle one safely.

If you find yourself at risk due to the chupacabras threat, here are some important notes to remember which can keep you from being eaten alive:
  • Home Sweet Home − Chupacabras don't understand doors. If you are hiding inside your home, they won't know where you are and will look for food elsewhere.
  • Barricade Your Door − Chupacabras are very strong, but not unstoppable. Whilst they can break through some doors, bars or something heavy can keep them out.
  • Play the Waiting Game − Never face a chupacabras at night. They have superior night vision, but daylight blinds them. Wait out the night if you want to stay safe.
  • Peace is Quiet − Chupacabras are not quiet, sneaky creatures, they are loud, cranky, sloppy predators, so if you cannot hear them, you are safer than if you can.
  • Don't Feed the Animals − Everything is food, nothing satiates them, and if you put food out near you, you just bring the chupacabras to you. Don't bait them.
  • Let there be Light − Light blinds the sensitive eyes of a chupacabra, and it can scare them. But this is a very risky move, as they may try to kill it.
  • Sink or Swim − If you know how to swim, getting into cold water can save your life. Because they fear the cold, they won't follow. Just beware of hypothermia.
  • Younger, More Hunger − Their transformation is controlled by unnatural appetite, so the more recently they have changed the more dangerous they will be.
  • Don't Touch − Don't kick or punch, don't grab, don't even get near. Even if you can survive, their spines can easily infect you with their corrupt venom. Beware.
Whilst, technically, it can be referred to as venom, the Hunting community tends to refer to the poison of the chupacabras as "chupacabras toxin". Mostly, this is to differentiate between vampire venom and chupacabras venom, but also to remind that the mutated venom of the chupacabras is more dangerous, painful and toxic. There have been cases of chupacabras toxin infecting people through their unbroken skin, it is a vile and painful infectant.
When hunting chupacabras, your main goal is to avoid being infected. Because chupacabras are already in severe pain, whilst some ethicists may disagree, Hunters have deemed it pragmatic that inhumane methods of hunting are fair game for the chupacabras. They are, after all, a human suffering from a toxic mutation. Your goal is to end their existence to cease their suffering and prevent the suffering of others.
Never capture a chupacabras, only kill. To capture a chupacabras, prevent it from eating, and keep it alive is nothing short of torture. Even in human form, they are sick, infectious and dangerous. Kill on sight.

The only upside of the chupacabras, is that they are loud, messy and conspicuous. Whilst I often equate the work of hunting a monster as that of a detective, in thsi case you're not a detective, you're a firefighter.
Find the source, put it out.
So, your location, is your first victim. Be it human, pet or especially goat (they aren't called "goat suckers" for nothing), the chupacabras will seek out and attack, then eat their victim. Chupacabras have an unusual habit of leaving behind skin, I believe this is a remnant of their vampiric nature that they prefer their food wet to dry, but no matter the reason, chupacabras have a habit of killing, then biting into the stomach and tearing out what they can grab and eating it. This is much akin to the way a werewolf may devour human victims, but there are some differences. A telltale sign is the "chupacabras bite". A common misunderstanding is that chupacabras drink blood identical to a vampire, but with a third "tooth" unlike the vampire bite. This is not true, chupacabras tear out organs and rip with their teeth, but they tend to grab their food and pierce with their claws in a way that pierces the skin with three fingers, which leaves behind a mark like the finger-holes on a bowling ball, two close together and one further down creating a long triangle. Also, werewolves are heavy and large, and tend to lunge on top of prey, chupacabras are messier, there are often signs of a long and painful struggle, wounds will often not look like torn scratches as much as piercing and gouging, and there will often be missing fingers, nose or genitals, and in the case of animals, they often eat the ears and tail, or even legs if they are small enough, anything it can fit in its mouth.
Don't mess around, don't interrogate, don't collect evidence. Remember, firefighter, there is a blazing monster on the loose. If you find a chupacabras bite, or believe the body has been chewed on and brutalized, extremities are missing, go on the hunt. Especially if it is night time.
They're not hiding, don't play cat and mouse, get in a vehicle if you have one and drive. If you don't have a vehicle, draw your weapon of choice and run. The Hunt is on, and the longer it takes you to catch this monster, the more death they will cause.
Your suspects will either be the conspicuous rabid, monsters with sharp teeth, spines and shrieking in pain as described above. Or, in the instance that your chupacabras is in human form, they will be unhealthy, delirious, their skin often a sickly yellow colour, covered in stretch marks or cuts, their teeth dirty and bloodied and it is very common for them to vomit blood or suffer extreme mood swings. They are dying, it's not the kind of thing you can hide very well; the only reason they survive each time is because the same thing killing them also gives them vampiric endurance and werewolven fortitude, but that just prolongs their suffering. Follow the trail of blood, teeth marks, victims, sightings and vomit, you will find your monster soon.

Do not ever capture a chupacabras, I cannot say this enough. I've seen Hunters try, often using methods similar to capturing a werewolf or zombie, but it is a daft and dangerous action. Put Them Down. They have suffered enough. Let them die.
Your best method is a Decapitate. My tried and true method for taking down a chupacabras is to get in my truck, run them over and stop so that they're trapped underneath, then stab them in the head with my Weapon of Choice if they're still moving. I know it seems cruel but it's necessary, you can never touch them as there's a high risk of being intoxicated, and it puts you at the least risk. It also avoids unnecessary mess. Some Hunters prefer to get a gun, and shoot them in the head. It keeps them far away from you, lowering your risk of intoxication, and it is a swift kill. Unfortunately, this method can spread their brain matter out, which makes clean-up more difficult and if you only have a shotgun (as most Hunters do, for the sake of packing specialized shells), then it's an even higher risk of getting their toxin on you, and it also puts citizens at risk of getting shot if your chupacabras is in the middle of a populated area, which is very likely, but it does often work.
It's difficult, because they aren't bothered by pain, so fire is much too dangerous; traps often just aggravate them and they've been known to chew through their own feet to escape a trap; and because they have toxic blood, if you try to cut them or bleed them out or fail at many of the other various methods, you will leave a huge mess in their wake that can infect more unfortunate victims. The stupidest attempt I have ever seen was a man who fed a grenade to a chupacabras. Three more people became infected as a result, and the man died in the attempt. It was a waste of human life which I hope to never see again.
The only other method of killing that I endorse is Suffocate. Not just by drowning, although that can work, but if you have more experience with traps, one method is to entrap them (preferably a cage, not a snare, as they will try to tear themselves free), then surround the trap with something mostly airtight and fill it with a non-oxygenated gas you can acquire. I highly recommend carbon monoxide, as it's easy to attach a hose to your exhaust, and I find that it is the quietest method, if not the quickest.

It doesn't end there. The job's not done. When Hunting a chupacabras, you're in Attack Mode, you hunt, you kill, you do it quick. But after the job is done, you have to enter Defense Mode, you have to prevent the infection from spreading. As I said, the chupacabras is a pest, so you need to contain the threat before moving on, You Will Need:
"Suit" - You can't protect people from being sick if you are sick, yourself. You can purchase hazard suits online so long as they're airtight with splash protection (level B in the U.S., Type 2 in Europe), or if you have electrical tape, a raincoat, wet weather pants, rubber gloves and boots, you can wear that and seal up anywhere that isn't watertight with tape; but, you need to cover your face as your eyes and nose are very susceptible to infection, so no matter what I always use a raincoat with a hood, and wear a gasmask that covers my eyes. If you don't have a gas mask, at the very least, I recommend you wear protective glasses and a "particulate respirator" mask, even a disposable one, you can get them from most hardware stores. This isn't just for the chupacabras toxin; the cleaning solution required to clean it up is very volatile as well, don't cut corners.
"Slop" - You will need a caustic solution to dissolve and destroy your chupacabras and any bodily fluids or dead victims they leave behind. Chupacabras toxin is a biological toxin, which means it can be destroyed with a caustic solution. I prefer lye and water, since you'll need a lot and this is one of the cheaper and safer options; I use a 5:2 water-lye solution. This is your "weapon" now.
I mix the solution in a plastic wheelie bin which I purchased, as it is made from polyethylene, which is safe with the caustic soda I use. Now, this solution is incredibly dangerous, if you get any of it on your skin, you need to flush the area with water, try to water down the alkaline and if possible scrub it off. And if you mix caustic soda with water, the chemical reaction produces a lot of heat, and I find that it can melt the plastic of the bin I mix it in, so you'll need to add the soda slowly or use a metal container. Look up some basic chemistry, caustic soda can dissolve glass, the vapours are dangerous and the solution will cause permanent blindness if it gets in your eyes, be careful. Also, don't fill the container; there's a reason I chose a bin with wheels, you will need to move it around, and if it's overfilled, it will spill. It's a pointless waste, and creates a serious risk.
"Spade" - It's a bad idea to throw this stuff around with your hands. Not only is that risky if you've made your own Suit, but it's difficult to spread it effectively. I use a shovel, with a metal handle (wood breaks down in caustic soda). You will need a spade for a few reasons. If you are putting large pieces of chupacabras, especially severed chupacabras limbs or the head into your Slop, it's a safe way to scoop them up whilst keeping well clear of their spines and claws. Also, if there is blood on walls or the road, use your Spade to scoop out some Slop and spread it out on the affected area.
Remember, your job is to disinfect, not make it look pretty. It will probably leave a stain; that's not your concern.

Other equipment you might need includes caution tape and/or traffic cones. This is actually something you can purchase in hardware stores, and with this and some rods you can stand on the ground or sticky tape or a stapler, it can save a lot of effort trying to keep people away whilst you are cleaning, or marking off areas far away, if you have a big cleanup job ahead. Often the smell is enough to keep people away, but it does make some all the more curious. I find that Slop is the most effective, but if you find that too difficult in some circumstances, you could attempt to do the same thing with fire and accelerant.. I find that too dangerous, especially for stains inside of homes. You may also need some handcuffs, or just a strong few zip-ties is much cheaper and easier. Always bind their hands behind them or to something solid (I often zip-tie them to the tow-ball of my truck).
It is rare, thankfully, that victims of chupacabras get scratched and live to talk about it. However, in the instance that they do you have to quarantine them as well. You should also have fresh water with you, for safety, to dilute any accidental spills of your caustic solution.

So, set to your task. Once you have your Suit, Slop and Spade, if you have used any weapons or tools against the chupacabras which may need to be detoxified, it's a good idea to dunk them in the Slop and stir them around. If there is just blood, it doesn't take long for the Slop to get to work.
Next, collect your chupacabras corpse. I recommend that you break up your chupacabras corpse with your spade, to increase the surface area so it breaks up faster. Whilst Slop works faster and cleaner than some other methods, it can take around three hours to dissolve an entire chupacabras. Some hunters mix things up by burning the body beforehand, it does make it safer but I find that wasteful and dangerous. Also, any dead victims need to go in the slop as well. Don't rush, don't stuff them in, plan ahead. If there's too many for your Slop, either cremate the remains of the victims, or make more Slop.
Also, the reason I call it "slop" despite the fact that lye and water is clear when mixed is because as the body dissolves it becomes soapy, brown and gelatinous, which colours the water. If the Slop becomes too dark, dispose of it and make more.
Finally, pour some slop onto areas where blood, viscera, organs or body parts have stained the area. If you can pick it up, put it in the Slop; this includes grass, you can't leave these bloodstains on grass. Whilst the toxin will eventually break down, just to be safe you should dig out any grass or dirt with chupacabras blood on it and put it in your Slop.

Lastly . . . victims. If there are any living victims of the chupacabras with bites or scratches or blood on their skin, cuff them as soon as possible or separate them from anyone else in a locked room or enclosed space. Now is the difficult part.
You have two options:

- Kill them.
They are infected, they have a high chance of becoming a chupacabras. Especially if they have been penetrated with a spine, claw or tooth; or they've gotten blood in their mouth, eye or any wounds, it's inevitable. Kill them, and treat them as another chupacabras to clean up after.
- Torture them. As I've said, it is very rare, but there can be survivors of chupacabras attacks. If their intoxication looks minimal, or you're not sure how bad it is, you need to get some slop and apply it to the affected area. If that's too difficult, you could apply some accelerant and set it alight. Don't lie to them, it is going to hurt. A lot. Especially if it's close to their face. It's also a very stupid thing to do, but this is their only option and if I had to choose between second or third degree chemical burns and being chupacabras, it's no choice at all. After their skin blisters and burns away, get some water and flush the area until the soda is dilute (or the fire goes out), then, get the person first aid, with disinfectant and bandages. Then, wait until nightfall and test them. Soak a small towel in warm salty water and place it in their mouth. If they spit it out, they are well. If they try to eat it, or do anything other than spit it out or suck the water, it's time to put them down. If you're not sure, wait another night, feed them no meat and try again.

Final Notes
I hate the chupacabras. I've lost so many innocents due to careless mistakes with weapon choice; misidentifying warning signs; poor quarantine practices and hasty decisions. I also have friends horrifically scarred due to a small scratch they needed to disinfect, and irremovable stains on the back of my truck, to remind me of the time when I mistook an infected chupacabras with a detoxified survivor.
Stupid, small, simple mistakes are your greatest enemy in regards to the chupacabras.
I can guarantee you that the number of times that a Hunter has hesitated before destroying a chupacabras is equal to the number of Hunters that have died hunting these creatures down. Don't let yourself become one of them.