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Mystery in Hazzard Swamp

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Luke clears his throat on the other end of the phone to gather Bo's attention back to the phone. "Well things are a little more complicated here than we had expected. She is more sick than what they had let knwon to us over the phone. The farm is really ran down since she has been sick for a while now. The farm was definate uncared for for a while now. There is a lot of work to be done to get the farm back into proper shape. So I plan on doing that with a few locals here in town that has volunteered to help out. Daisy and a few woman are taking care of our aunt and see if they can get her back into health while we work on the farm." *Luke goes silent for a long moment.* "I'm afraid it'll be a few more days than what we had been expecting. Just thought I'd call home to see what we're missing and how's it going?"

"We're doing alright," Bo shrugs to himself, "things are slowly getting done. Though Swamp Molly and Alice have been by acting weird. Jesse's been out in the swamp today. He says they were acting really weird and yet won't even say a word of what is going on. Heck, Alice refused to even talk to me when I met them at the Boar's Nest this afternoon. No talk of wrastling or anything. I am not complaining about that, but Jesse's really worried about them."*

"Well if Alice didn't ask you to wrastle, something is definately wrong," Luke goes silent in thought for a long moment and silence fills the room and Bo momentarily wonders where Jesse is. "I wish I was there to help out. But, I'm not. You know what that means?" Luke goes silent, awaiting for an answer. Not getting one, he continues, "That means it is up to you help Alice and Molly. I know how you feel about Alice and Molly, but they're family. You know Jesse is bound to need to do something to find out what is wrong and to help them. That's just how he is. That means, you need to step up and do something to help Alice and Molly out with whatever it is that is wrong. It's all up to you, Bo."

*Sharp emotions ring through Bo with Luke's bold speech. First they got into their big fight, then Luke and Daisy left Hazzard to help out their aunt, and now he's telling him to step up and take charge. To do something. As if Bo would know what to do to help Alice and Molly, especially when they won't even talk to him. Not alone tell him what is wrong. But instead of voicing his opinion, his emotions, he hears himself say. *"Like what, Luke?"

"I don't know, Bo. It'll be up to you, not me this time." He gives a short and sarcastic laugh, "Look, I'm getting called. I got to go. Tell Jesse I said hi. Bye Bo."

"Yeah, bye Luke," Bo nods before he hears the phone go dead on the other end of the line.*

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Jesse "Whatcha talkin' about Andrew?"

Andrew "Now Jesse, you and me go way back to when we was kids. Have you ever known me to have hallucinations or make up stories or anythin' like that?"

Jesse "Well....I reckon not....can't rightly think of anything like that. In fact, you don't even touch alcohol so you usually see things pretty straight....and I bet ya still got 20-20 eyesight don't ya?"

Andrew "Sure do"

Jesse "Well, then what is it old friend?"

Andrew "Well, don't go around repeating this 'er folks is goin' to think I'm going plum loco but....."

Jesse "It's okay Andrew, I promise not to say anything. Now spit it out"

Andrew "It's just that I've been seeing something odd out there on the north end of the swamp....and I seen it more than once."

Jesse "And?"

Andrew "And it's some kinda swamp creature or something. I gots to tell ya Jesse, I'm just a little bit scared lately."

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*Bo hangs up the phone and slowly gets up from his seat, dreading what Luke had told him. What was he suppose to do to help calm Jesse's worries and to help Swamp Molly? Luke was the brains between the two of them. Bo's pride may not allow him to swallow the fact that Luke is smarter and better at a lot of things than he is. But deep down, reality sinks heavily within him. Luke is the one that thinks his way out of the trouble they find themselves in, the one that sees everything as it is and finds a way around their trouble. Bo only sees the problem itself, seemingly blind to any way out of the trouble. Yet he is suppose to help Swamp Molly. How?* Damn it Luke * He cusses aloud in frustration as he makes his way to the window to find Jesse outside talking to his old friend, Andrew. Upon seeing the worried and fear filled looks upon Jesse's and Andrew's faces, only draws Bo's curiosity out as to what they are talking about. *

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*Jesse's jaw drops and Andrew can tell he knows something*

Andrew "Now Jesse, ya got that look on yer face..."

Jesse "Well, it's strange. On the other end of the swamp, Alice and Molly seem to be having the same problem. I wonder what in the world is going on. Did you get a good look at it?"

Andrew "Well Jesse, yes and no. It seems to run off when the coon hounds start barkin' at it but I've seen it about 4 times now. As far as I can tell looking through the thickets, it appears to be about 10 foot tall and walks like a human. It's black but sometimes when the light's bright enough, it almost looks dark green. Since I've been seeing it, I've also been hearing these high pitched screams that'll curl yer hair. It ain't no human screamin' I can tell ya that. I ain't never heard nothin' like it. I tell ya Jesse I don't sleep no more without a loaded 12 gauge double barrel laying beside me. Some nights when it screams, I don't sleep at all. I ain't had this many sleepless nights since WWII."

Jesse *looking very concerned* "Ya know yer welcome to stay here if ya want to. Our place is your place."

Andrew "Thanks buddy but I have all the critters to take care of. Besides, I didn't run in the war and I ain't runnin' now."

Jesse "Is there anything I can do?"

Andrew "I reckon just put up a prayer to the Almighty for me and don't tell anyone about this conversation. Also, let me know if ya hear anythin' else."

Jesse "Sure thing"

*Andrew gets in truck and says one final thing before leaving* "And if anything ever happens to me, make sure my son and his family up in Kentucky know how much I love them."

*Those words give Jesse the chills as Andrew drives off*

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*Bo watches as Andrew leaves the drive way and drives off onto the dusty dirt road before he slowly pushes himself backwards and walks through the kitchen. Taking a deep breath, Bo opens the screen door to step outside and seeing the ghostly pale skin of his uncle, his heart comes to a dreadful halt. Forcing himself to breath, Bo walks down the porch steps and to his uncle to ask* "Uncle Jesse, what's wrong?"*

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* Andrew's comment about never seeing his son and his family again shook Jesse to the core. He was visible shaken when Bo spoke to him and Bo's words snapped him from his trance*

Jesse "I wish I could tell ya Bo but I gave my word that I wouldn't. I will say this...tonight I'm packing up enough gear to survive a day or two in the Hazzard Swamp and I'm headin' out there first thing in the morning. Now, don't ya go trying to stop me. I'm a full grown man and I can fend fer myself."

*Jesse steps around Bo and walks back into the house.*

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*Bo watches Jesse in startlement and fear. He had never heard Jesse talk like that or seen him act like that. Only to remind him of what Luke had told him. It was up to him to help Jesse. It was up to him to help Molly. But what was he suppose to do if Jesse didn't want his help? He couldn't just force it on him if he didn't want it. The only thought that comes to mind would be to follow Jesse, but everyone knows how horrible Bo is at sneaking around and following anyone unnoticed. As Jesse reaches the steps, Bo hears himself abruptly blurting out* "Who said anything about stopping you? And seeing how you seem to be a few years older than I, who am I to say you aren't a grown man?" *Bo pauses as he buys time to think.* "But I ain't no child either. You can't just go and expect me to stay home and worry about you either. Luke'd have my hide if he knew I let you go by your stubborn self. So, if you can't be persuaded not to go, at least let me go with you." *Bo is surprised to hear an authoritive edge behind his voice as well as strong confidence that he feels little of as he stands facing his uncle.*

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*Jesse pops his head back out of the door while leaning on the side of the entrance*

"Now Bo, we're already down to two of us runnin' this place. How's it going to be if there ain't none 'cause we're both runnin' around the swamp chasin' monsters? I'm gonna put the walkie talkie and extra batteries with the stuff I'm takin' so I'll be able to call ya anytime.

There comes a point in a feller's life that he's gotta take a chance and help his neighbors....even if they are swamp folks. Besides, if there is somethin' running around there it could head on out away from the swamp and hurt someone's kid 'er somethin'. I couldn't live myself ifn I didn't try ta stop it.....not to mention the fact that I'm just a might curious. If there's some kinda swamp monster runnin' round, I'd sure like ta git a look at him."

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*Bo looks at his uncle as his own worry quickly changes into irritation at his uncle's stubbornness. Yet he knew this is what he would say or act.* "This farm here can manage a couple of days without anyone mending it. We just give the animals extra food and water. If you're that worried about it, why not call a neighbor to drive by once a day to check up on it. And monsters?" *Bo goes silent for a long moment as he bites his tongue and his emotions as to not upset his uncle any farther or to get him in any more trouble. After all, Jesse has yet to find out about his near arrest he had this afternoon. If he was worried about the farm now, who knew how'd he act if Bo got himself legally arrested.* "Wasn't it you who always told me there was no such thing as monsters? And now just because some swamp people claim that this big bad monster is lurking around, you're just going to drop everything and believe them? Perhaps all that gas and swamp gone to their heads. Or maybe this is Hogg's way of scaring people off in order to fulfill one of his crazy plans. There has got to be some other logical reason behind it all other than it being monsters. If you weren't willing to believe me back then, then how come you are so willing to believe them?" *Bo eyes his uncle, awaiting a response, surprised at himself at all that he had just said. Leaning against the car, he awaits for Jesse to start laughing at him or mocking him for what he had just said. Luke was the logical one of the two, not him. Yet here he was arguing about logic.* "Besides, I ain't no child no more. You don't need to go on and act like you have to protect me or leave me behind. If this is something so big and bad that's got you and Andrew acting like it's the end of the world, then the more help you have, I would think, would be better. 'Sides you think I could live with myself if something happened to you while you went to save them so called innocenct children? Not only I'd have to face myself every morning, I'd have to face Luke and Daisy when they got home. I don't know what would be worse. Myself or them, but I don't reckon on finding out anytime soon either." *Bo finally goes silent, stubbornly awaiting for Jesse's response or the punishment he'll be handing out for Bo being so defiant against him and his wishes.*

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*Jesse responds with strong anger*

"Now you listen here young man, before you was born, before Luke and Daisy was born and before all yer parents was even born, me and Andrew Harkness was best friends. I could tell ya stories that'd curl yer hair about some of the things me and him has been through. Not only that but he has two purple hearts and a Congressional Medal of Honor so you'd better take notice when someone like him says something....not that it's any of yer business what he said.....When an honorable man like Andrew Harkness speaks, Jesse Duke listens. I ain't just a sittin' around doing nothing. He has more metal in his legs from the war than the General Lee has in its engine and he's not able to get around and protect folks from whatever it is that's out there terrorizing 'em so it's about time an able bodied man helps out some and does a little investigating."

*Jesse calms down and speaks softly*

"Now you can do what ya want. Ya can stay here and watch the farm or ya can make arrangements with someone else and come with me. I'm heading in to pack some things"

*Jesse walks in house*

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*Bo Duke angrily watches Jesse storm off and into the house which only fuels his temper. A temper he knows to keep in check. If he wasn't in enough trouble now, he'd sure be in a heck more trouble if he allowed his temper to show towards his uncle. Andrew may be a damn hero for all bo knew, but what gave Jesse the right to go yell at him like that for? All Bo wanted to do was to help his uncle out and yet all he managed to do is upset him.

Feeling rejected, Bo begins to angrily kick a large rock towards the barn as he struggles with his anger and temper in an attempt to think fo what to do. Jesse gave him permission to ride along, if he would arrange someone to look out over the farm. But after being at the blunt end of Jesse's temper, he wasn't so sure he wanted to ride along with him. He'd rather take The General and do it on his own than to be trapped within the small confines of his truck with him as upset at him as he seems. Luke told him to do something to help his uncle out and if Luke was there to see Bo cowering into the barn with thoughts of just allowing Jesse to go out on his own stubbron way, Luke'd be tackling him to the ground and telling him just how stupid he really is. Bo shakes the thought away as he steps into the shadow filled barn and whispers aloud to his older cousin, "If you want to do something about it, Luke. Then you do it." *Bo shakes his head again at himself as the all too familiar feeling of inadequentacy suffocates him. The same feeling he always seems to get when he thinks of Luke, compares himself to Luke and all that Luke has accomplished in his life.

*Finding his normal dark corner in the loft where he generally goes to be alone, Bo struggles past his feelings and emotions that continue to rain down upon him. He shoves his thoughts past Luke and his own situation in order to think of what he should do. The option should be easy. Jesse's anger will calm down, it generally does, and when it does, Bo should be there for him. Otherwise he may have a lot of explaining to do to Luke and Daisy when they return on why Bo failed to do what Luke told him to do. Why he let everyone down. But with his raging emotions rushing through him, it's hard for him to agree to to a place he hates going in order to help people who only seems to bring trouble upon him and his family. Staring through the open loft gate over the farm house, all that he had said runs through him only to be echoed by all that Jesse said as well as Jesse's crystal blue eyes ablaze with intense anger towards him. One of these days, he'll think before speaking, and perhaps one of these days, he'll say the right thing. . .*

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Walking directly into his bedroom without realizing how much he had hurt Bo, Jesse was preoccupied on thinking about the next couple of days. He would never tell Bo but he was starting to wonder if he was up for such a dangerous adventure. After all, there's a lot of ways to get hurt, or worse, in a place as inhospitable as the Hazzard Swamp. Still, the excitement of the adventure took him back to his youth....before he got married and had no real responsibilities except helping his parents and grandpa on the farm where he still resides. That was a time that he was indestructable. Those were his glory days. He was bound and determined that he would laugh at danger again and this would be that time.

Jesse busily walked between the bedroom and kitchen gathering stuff up for a long visit to the swamp....extra clothes, matches, knives, water and food, a tent, shotgun, ammo, first aid kit, walkie talkie, extra batteries, etc.

In reality he didn't need any of that but he knew it would make life easier. He still had the skills to survive without those things. He knew which wild plants were edible and which were poison. He knew how to make and set a snare trap and start a fire with sticks.

It was the monster he was concerned about....and the secret he had kept from Bo scared him even more. He wondered if he should reveal it to his nephew. It was something that he had never revealed to anyone except his wife, but it seemed like Bo deserved to know.

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*Exhaustion is quick to hit Bo after a long moment of sitting in the loft and he sits straighter up in order to fight off sleep. He had a decision to make and if he was going to ride along with Jesse, he better make it, other wise, Jesse would just leave without him. Shaking his head in frustration, Bo sighs in defeat. After all, who was he kidding? What choice did he have? Either ride along with Jesse or drive The General to the swamp. Whether he liked it or not, he had to go and help Jesse with this so called monster as they were calling it. And he couldn't allow his emotions to persuade him against doing the right thing and he knew he would never forgive himself if something did happen to Jesse; especially if he opted not to go and help out. But dang it, what did he do to get Jesse so upset? He hadn't gotten Jesse that upset at him since stealing his truck on graduation day in the middle of the night and ran into a thick tree in his attempt to escape arrest by the sheriff. Then he knew he deserved to be at the end of Jesse's fiery wrath, but now? All he did was open his big mouth.

*Staring over the old farm house momentarily, Bo slowly stands up and stiffly walks over to the old weak wooden ladder to climb down. If he was going to do something, he better be ready for whenever Jesse decided to leave. Meaning he had to contact Cooter or someone to feed the livestock and perhaps grab a few things to go with him. He couldn't afford to make his uncle even more upset at him than he already seemed to be.*

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A half hour after sunset the sky starts to darken. At this point Jesse is completely packed and has his night robe on and is thinking about going to sleep to get an early start. He starts to wonder about Bo. Jesse knew there were extra chores with the other two gone but didn't think his nephew would take this long to get in.

Then Jesse remembered that tonight was a Full Moon and that the Full Moon always rises at sunset. He reckoned that Bo was sitting on top of the barn watching the beautiful orange orb rise up out of the cornfield. He looked out the window but saw nobody on the barn roof.

Then, it dawned on Jesse that Bo is always a little extra sensitive when Luke's gone and perhaps his strong words were the cause of the young man's absence.

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*Bo watches the sky change colors with dread before he double checks the gate to the pasture and mentally goes over the chores he needs to finish before returning home. If he was going to go with Jesse, the animals would need extra feed and water and the chores should be taken care of; even if he didn't feel like doing them. Looking over everything one last time, Bo steps away from the gate wishing he could climb back into The General and just drive. Just drive until everything went away. Though deep down he knew things wouldn't resolve on their own and running away from it all, was definately not the answer to it all. And with Luke gone, perhaps this is his time to prove himself to Jesse, to Hazzard, and even to himself of what he was capable of doing. That he could help someone else out of trouble without the help of Luke as he always had. But what if he failed? What would that say or mean to everyone? Deep down he knows it is better to try and fail than fail to do anything at all, but failing while doing so would puncture his pride for sure. How could he face Luke after Luke trusted him to take care of the situation? Luke seemed to have confidence in him to do the right thing, to be able to handle whatever it was that was bothering Jesse at the swamp. More confidence in him than Bo had for himself. He was use to his normal role of following Luke's orders and doing what Luke's bright ideas had him doing. Not having to be the one to think of the bright ideas to resolve problems and get people out of trouble. . .

*Turning back to the farm house that stands tall and proud across the dirt road, Bo is reminded of Jesse harsh words and of his temper to only have him questioning what he did that entailed Jesse to get so upset. Who'd think a man of Jesse's or Andrew's age would be afraid of monsters? Not alone to get Jesse upset at him for questioning their supposed theory of it being a monster. After all, it was Jesse who was the one that repeatedly told him every night for over a year that there was no such thing as monsters. If Bo didn't know better, he'd say Jesse lied to him. But at his age, no matter what Jesse told him night after night when he was three or four years old, he knew there was no such thing as monsters. But if Jesse and Andrew wanted whatever it was that was haunting the swamp, a monster, then who was Bo to say elsewise? Monster or not, like it or not, he was going to the swamp to help Jesse fight whatever this monster was. But how do you fight something you don't know what it is? And thinking of the horror trapped in Jesse's and Andrew's eyes, Bo knew it had to be something dangerous and perhaps violent. Looking up at the farm house, chills run violently run down his back as his thoughts fall dark and wondering if he'll ever be able to see the farm or his beloved General again once they leave for the swamp come morning.

*He slowly and reluctantly approaches the farm house, the chills become a permanant fixture on his warm body as his own fear accelerates within him as his thoughts remain upon the dark and cold thoughts of how violent or painful death him and his uncle may have to endure in order to help stop this monster. Well, if Bo had anything to do with it, he'll die trying to save his uncle. Better him than Jesse. No one would forgive Bo if he were to return home without a living and healthy uncle.

*Breathing in deeply, he contemplates attempting to sneak into the house through the side door and make a rush to the bedroom he shares with Luke in order to avoid any more anger from Jesse. But he had to make a phone call to Cooter if he was planning on going with Jesse and if he was going to do that, he might as well as make his presence know by walking through the front door. Eyeing The General on his way past, Bo makes his way up to the porch and to the front door to see the bright kitchen light welcoming him home.*

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*Jesse opens the door, surprised to see Bo standing right there getting ready to come in*

"Oh, there ya are! I was just gettin' ready to come out there and see if everything's okay. I reckon ya got everything done, seein' as how ya was out there so long."

*Jesse pauses a few seconds*

"Um, maybe we should sit down and talk."

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*Bo jumps in surprise as the door is slowly thrown open just as he goes to grab the door handle and he finds Jesse standing there with a look of shock on his face. Bo swallows hard as he listens to what Jesse had to say, only to be filled with more shock and surprise at what Jesse had said.* "Yeah, here I am. I suppose I'm about done out there, though didn't know you were looking for me." *Bo goes silent for a long moment, his thought goes back to Jesse's unknown anger and temper at him earlier. To send worry and curiosity through as of what Jesse has to talk to him about. Bo inhales deeply, attempting to shove his thoughts and emotions aside. Bo shrugs and says, "Talk?" *Bo shrugs as he makes his way past Jesse and to the kitchen table, knowing that is where he is talking about. "Well here I am, but if this is something about what you said earlier. I apologize for offending you. That wasn't my objective. Honestly. I just meant to say that there has to be some logical explanation behind all of this. But if you say not, then there isn't. I really don't care. One way or another, know that I am here to help you any way I can." *Bo sits down at the table and looks up at Jesse, awaiting for his answer.*

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*Jesse sits down. He doesn't speak for several seconds then sighs*

"Tomorrow's going to be a big day so I'll get right to the point. I'm going to tell ya somethin' that I've never told anyone before 'cept your aunt, God rest her soul.

When I was a young man, not even as old as you are now. I went out into the Hazzard Swamp with an old friend of Grandpa Dukes. That old timer was named Hezakiah Harkness. He was the grandfather of Andrew Harkness.

We was out there on the west end of the swamp and we had set our crawdad traps and old Hezakiah decided we'd paddle on into some of those channels that twist around all over the place on that end of the swamp.

Anyhow,deep into a channel, Mr. Harkness spotted a patch of blue coneflowers. Back then, folks didn't get their medicine from the drug store, they got it from medicinal plants. Blue coneflowers were about as rare and useful medicine as ya could find.

So me and the old man got out of that flat bottom boat and went over to get some of 'em. He commensed to pickin' some of them but was careful to explain that he couldn't pick too many because it was important that there was enough remaining to produce seeds so the patch wouldn't die off.

Then, it happened...there was a rustling in the bushes and...I know this is going to be hard to believe.....but there he stood, taller than the hawthorn bushes, a monster that is burned in my nightmares forever. The story didn't have a happy ending. Andrew Harkness's grandfather didn't live through that fateful visit."

*Jesse lowers his head and buries his face in his hands.*

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*Bo remains silent for a long moment, taking it all in and trying to digest all that his uncle had told him. Jesse seldom confided in him like this which only seems to bring weight upon all that he had said. But what shook Bo the most, wasn't what Jesse had said or how he said it, but the emotion and the pain and horror his uncle seems to be trapped in after so many years. Only to leave him speechless and feeling hopeless of what he should say or do next.* "Well now I know why you were so upset earlier," Bo hears himself slowly speak up before going quiet once more as he attempts to gather his thoughts. "I didn't mean to question you or Andrew. . ." Bo lets his sentence hang, feeling awkward and useless. Breathing in deeply, he states, "Just let me know how I may be of help. I'll be glad to do anything I can do to help you and everyone out."*

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*Jesse lifts his head up*

"I really want you to make that decision fer yerself. I'm gonna do what I feel like I have to do but you can make up yer own mind. I could use you out there but I could use you here too. I'm gonna have the walkie talkie and extra batteries so if I got in trouble I could always call ya if I needed ya.

It's just that....Hezakiah's death has always weighed on my mind. There was nothing I could do to stop it but still....."

*Jesse got up*

"It's time I stop talking and git some rest. Tomorrow's going to be a long day."

*Jesse turns around and walks toward his room wondering if Bo will stop him to continue the conversation*

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*Bo inhales deeply.* "I imagine something like that would whether or not you could do something about it. But knowing you, you did everything you could do not for something as horrible as that to happen." *Bo hangs his head momentarily and looks back up at Jesse.* "I'm going to the swamp to do all that I can do to be of help to you and everyone else out there. Whether you want me to or not." *Bo pauses to wait for Jesse's anger or his attempt to stop him. As Jesse continues to be silent, Bo continues* "Once you are off, I'll call Cooter and see if he can stop by the farm to feed and check on the animals as well as the farm. He owes me a favor or two, so I'm willin' to bet that he'll be more than glad to be of some help." *Bo slowly stands up himself, his own exhaustion weighs upon him.* "I'll be sure to be ready whenever you are wanting to leave. Night Jesse."* With that, Bo makes his way past his tired uncle and to the phone with thoughts of calling Cooter.*

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*Bo watches his uncle leave the kitchen and once again Bo's mind falls upon Luke's absence and what that means for him. Luke would have known what to say to Jesse in an attempt to help him feel better or at least supply some comfort. Luke would go into tomorrow with a plan that would help Jesse and his friends out of the trouble or the predictament that they are now in. But Bo? He had no idea what he was in for or what he should do or say.

*Once again, Bo reminds himself that this is his time to prove himself to everyone that he is more than what everyone sees or thinks of him. Sighing heavily, he slowly walks over to the phone and after picking up the handle, he dials the phone number he could dial in his sleep.*

After three rings a groggy voice comes on the line, "Davenport."

"Cooter?" Bo questions, surprised to hear his friend sounding so tired. "You in bed already?"

"Well hey Bo," Cooter's voice awakens before going silent, "I guess I could lie to you and tell you I wasn't in bed, but truth is, I was in bed. Sleeping good before you had to go wake me up. Just been a little bored around here lately. Ever since Luke left business has been slow since you haven't wrecked any patrol cars and all and you seem too busy for little ol' me or either that or you just put up with me because Luke hangs out with me. So I've been a little bored, so figured why not go to bed and catch a few more z's than normal."

*Bo lends Cooter a small laugh.* "Honestly Cooter, I've been busy. I've got my own chores to do plus Luke's chores. Someone's got to do laundry," Bo pauses, realzing just how much Luke and Daisy adds to the household. "I ain't got no time for anyone other than the farm. By the time I'm finished, it's already dark and I'm tired and I've got to wake up early to start it all over again. Besides," Bo goes silent, staring into the dark living room, "figured I was doing you a favor."

"Yeah?" Cooter questions, "How's that?"

"Well y'all know how I get or how I am when I get tired and all," Bo slowly answers only for Cooter to interrupt him.

"Yeah. Grouchy," Cooter answers, "so thanks for sparing me." He pauses to laugh a moment. "Though I do realize that you have time to be calling me as of now and not any other night. Which makes me wonder what exactly you are wanting."

*Bo inhales deeply, feeling his exhaustion growing within him and he slowly sits down on the old chair as he attempts to ignore all thoughts of what tomorrow might hold.* "Well Cooter. I have a huge favor to ask you," Bo pauses again to sort out his words, "you see something has come up in the swamp. It's got Jesse acting weird as well as a couple other people. Jesse has the mind to go up there tomorrow to see what all is happening in the swamp and see if he can be of some help -"

"And you're figuring you have to tag along to be of some help yourself," Cooter once again interrupts him and Bo finds himself rolling his eyes at his friend in the dark, "but that'd leave the farm open and unattended. So you are calling me to see if I could stop by and keep tabs of it and take care of all them rowdy animals of your's? Is that it?"

*Bo sighs and nods before answering aloud, "Something like that. The animals will have extra food so unless we are gone for more than a day, they should be fine. I just need someone to stop by once or twice a day to make sure all is as it should be and all."

"That's all, huh? Well I suppose I can handle that," Cooter finally responds, "that is if you don't want me going with you and helping out. We all know how dangerous the swamp may be and the more people you got, the better."

"Nah. Don't think Jesse would think too much of that," Bo is quick to turn him down though deep down wanting to tell him to come along. "Thanks for the offer. I'll owe you big time."

"Damn right you will. Better hope you aren't gone too long, because the longer you're gone, the more time I'll have to think of what I am going to ask you in return," Cooter laughs which only seems to make Bo more anxious and tense than what he already is, "I'll be glad to stop by and take care of the farm while y'all are away. You just promise me one thing, OK buddy?"

"What's that?" Bo asks fighting off a yawn.

"Y'all be careful. Don't want to hear about you and Jesse dying out in the swamp or anything. Luke would be sure to have my hide if something were to happen to either one of you. Plus I'll be bound to live a life of boredom if the farm is left for Luke and Daisy to take care of. They'd for sure be too busy for little ol' me," Cooter goes silent momentarily, when he speaks up, his voice is full of worry and concert, "but seriously, y'all take care. You'll need to be present in order to pay me back for what I'm doing for y'all."

"I'll do my best Cooter. I really don't know what I am up against," Bo goes silent as his fear crawls within him of what tomorrow will hold for him, "that's all I'll promise you. I'll do my best. But I better get going. I have a feeling Jesse's going to be wanting to leave nice and early and I am assuming I'd do better with at least a little sleep. I'll give you a call if," Bo catches himself quickly, "when we get home."

"When you get home sounds a lot better. I'll have my radio up and handy if you need me, just give me a call. Be careful Bo," Cooter repeats himself.

"Yeah OK. Thanks again, Cooter," Bo slowly says, "night." He then hangs up before finding himself staring into space through the thick darkness before realizing it and slowly gets up to move towards his room. *

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*Jesse's fears of having a nightmare about the monster don't materialize. He had no nightmares but he was dreaming. He was dreaming of the smell of bacon and eggs in a frying pan. He was having visions of jam on toast, orange juice and breakfast biscuits.

He stirred in bed and then finally realized he wasn't dreaming after all. The smells were real. He stepped out of bed and walked into the kitchen and saw Bo's back.*


*his nephew turned around and smiled*

"I just want you to know how proud I am of you and how much I appreciate you and...well.....how much I love you."

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*Bo feels himself nodding slightly at his uncle while giving him another small smile as he sets down the spatula that he had been holding while checking on his food. It wasn't his normal routine to make breakfast even if Daisy wasn't home, so he was slightly worried and over protective of what he was doing in order for it to be just right. Turning back around he freely gives his uncle a hug before stepping back to say* "Well thank-you Uncle Jesse. I feel the same about you," Bo goes silent for a moment, "who knows where I'd be without you."

*Bo offers a nervous smile at his uncle before he turns around to check on his food and the smells of a fresh breakfast that would normally make him hungry now seems to only make him feel nausaus due to his fear and anxiety over what today will hold. He had went to bed late last night after talking to Cooter and showering and spent most of the night twisting and turning in his bed plagued with nightmares after nightmares of some huge beast attacking and eating his uncle with him watching nearby with nothing to do to stop the beast. So finally he decided enough was enough and that there was no way he was going to get a decent night sleep, he got up with hopes of surprising and helping his uncle out with breakfast.*

"Well," Bo states as he fights back a yawn. Despite the fatigue that seems to linger over him, he knows good and well that there was no way of him going back to sleep no matter how hard he tried. He was up for the long haul and hopefully they'll be returning tonight with the whole thing done and over with. "you're up just in time. Breakfast is ready."*

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