Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/campfires/item_id/2047320-The-Magic-of-Camp-Humolake
Rated: 13+ · Campfire Creative · Fiction · Animal · #2047320
A Summer camp's secret changes troubled kids.
What is Camp Humolake? It's like more of a Juvenile Detention Center then a summer camp, from school bullies to gangbangers. These kids are here spend the summer hoping that they reform from their bad criminal habits. The camp overlooks a lake and the secret that the lake's water has something special, it turns anything that drinks from it into an anthro, animals become human hybrids, and any humans become the hybrid animals they best represent.

A huge school bus with barred windows pulls into Camp Humolake's driveway, inside the bus, the kids are shackled into their seats and the guard stand up "Okay you maggots, here is where you spend 10 weeks. By the time we're done with all of you we expect some of you, hopefully all, to become modeled citizens instead of troublesome scumbags you are now. Remember, you are not here for fun because you all don't deserve it. Any questions?"
File Number: 209623

Name: Bruno McDouglas
Gender: Male

Age: 19

Hair: Red

Record: Kicked from 3 schools for bullying, he always intends to threaten kids for their lunch money, he once hit a kid because for failing the homework he threatened to do for him. In other words, a real troublemaker.

Bruno raised his hand "Yeah, why should we care?"

The guard says "Ahh, Mr. McDouglas. Because if your not reformed by this is over, I can make your life a living hell. I expect no trouble from you, or the Wardin will sick Zues and Appolo on you." Another kid says "You are they?" The guard says "The warden's trained attack dogs, Rottweilers that keeps kids like you in line."

File Number: 666

Name: Blondie Diablo

Age: 16

Hair: Blonde

Eyes: Blue

Record: Member of a Gang called The 666, was known as The Succubus by everyone for how she lured boys and girls alike into her clutches, chewed them up and spit them out, has in fact murdered rival gang members...The only reason she's being sent to this camp and not to prison tried as an adult was because her parents are really, really rich.

Blondie remained silent, she may have been utterly evil, but she was also smart, that Bruno was obviously an idiot, seriously why was this petty troublemaker here among kids who were actual criminals? Maybe because he was so massive, (She almost called him Goliath) That people thought this was the only way to get him under control

Blondie said nothing and just kept her head down, she'd find a way to beat the system, it was just a matter of using your brain and biding your time.
As the guards lead you off the bus, they unchain you off the seats and you ended up shackled next to a blond-haired girl with the numbers 666 tattooed on her right shoulder, you and the along with the rest, are soon lead to a large room where a man with two rottweilers on the leash, "Welcome to Camp Humolake." He says in a gravelly voice, "my name's Warden Charles Nash, and these are Zues and Appolo, remember those names because they will keep you all in line, you're here for one thing and one thing only. To repent of all your sins. If any of you ever escape. These dogs will hunt you down. Don't even test that. Already I have a sample of each of your possessions."
Blondie heard and made note of that, she had connections to her gang, she just had to find away to escape without anyone noticing and go so far beyond the reach that no one could find her.

But right now was boiling hot and she was thirsty as all get out.

As they walked by the lake, the sparking crystal water looked so thirst quenching, without thinking she stooped took some water in her hand and drank it in one swoop, no one even said or did anything.

Then, her stomach felt weird, her body began to shake, she looked at her hands and they morphed into tentacles, her hair fell out and tentacles started growing around her face.

Eventually she looked like this! http://metalkirin.com/images/full%20paintings%20and%20drawings/MATURE/squid%20la...

(Warning picture contains a nipple)
With Blondie turned into a squid-like monster panic soon followed, Warden Nash, says "Quickly, contain her before she feeds on the others!" Bruno got the worst of it, because he was shackled to the now transformed Blondie as she was soon tossed around, he found himself over the lake in which the tentacle sent him head first into the lake. Bruno is unable to breathe as he ended up drinking some of the water, soon the guards shot Blondie with a powerful tranquilizer as Bruno was helped out of the lake, as he rested on the docks, he felt great pain in his belly, he felt like his insides are on fire, then a terrible transformation took place as brown hairs began to sprout on his arms. He felt himself growing bigger and bigger as his arms legs became more muscular soon his entire body began to get bigger, causing his clothes to tear from the strain. His feet soon hardened into bovine hooves as his head began to grow long horns and be began to bellow like a bull. as his head soon morphed into a bull head. He's now a rampaging minotaur.
Blondie seeing Bruno's transformation, started to understand what was going on, and she hated it, this was some strange dark enchantment this so-called Camp had, she couldn't escape like this looking like Cthulhu's neice
Soon Bruno was shot full of tranquilizers, as Warden barked an order "Quickly, get McDouglas and Diablo in separate containers and have them sent to the clinic, I want to know what transformed them. They are now a danger to the rest of the camp. Later that night, scientists were collecting samples from the lake unaware that Zues and Appolo was lapping from the lake.
Blondie was starting to dry up so they put her in a big tank of water with a lid on it
Bruno ended up in a cell of re-enforced steel due to his superhuman strength of his new form. The cell has no windows and one door with a window that can be open and closed from the outside as guards occasionally use to observe him, his only companion was a small mirror, although he can no longer speak, he looks into the mirror and says to himself "Why did this happen to me?" and with one pound smashes the mirror ashamed.
File Number: 33789

Name: Mike Dugal

Gender: Male

Age: 17

Hair: Sandy

Eyes: Green

Record: Likes to set fires. Burned down his school's gymnasium. Burned down the garage of his parents' house. Sent to Juvenile Detention for arson.

Ten weeks thought Mike. And look at the characters I have to spend that time with! Best if I just lay low and don't make any waves.

"Hey, Mike!" said Tommy Hillfinger. "Did you hear what happened to Bruno and Blondie?"

"No. What?"
Tommy says "They turned into monsters after making contact with that lake, weird stuff. Blondie looks like something out of H.P. Lovecraft. while Bruno is changed into a minotaur. There's something strange in that lake." Tommy says "Oh? That is weird." This sparked an interest in Mike.

Meanwhile, Bruno is trying to cope with his double prison, cell he's currently in and the monsterous body he has now. When a voice says "Bruno McDouglas." He tried to say what but ended up with a short bellow and the voice says "Shh, you don't have to say anything, I sense you not only have my attention but have questions, Who am a shaman spirit that haunts this land, the lake has magical properties that turns into an animal that you best represent. Sense you enjoyed bullying kids, you've been turned into a minotaur, there's one way, you must reprent and reform from all your bullying habits in other words, you have to help people. It's the only way to break the curse. Now if you excuse me, I have to visit the other one."
"You were known as the Succubus." The Shaman said to Blondie "You reeled in males and females alike with your body only to chew them up and spit them out, no at cursory glance some people think there are many animals who could fit your archetype, snake, spider, shrew, cat, vixen, tiger but in reality your combination of sexual hunger and sheer sadism could equal only one animal...The Humboldt Squid."

Blondie didn't speak
"Turned into monsters!" Mike said. "Do you believe that?"

"Don't you?" said Tommy.

"No! Of course not. It's too weird. You go to a summer camp and swim in a lake and turn into a monster? Ridiculous!"

"Let's go take a swim then," Tommy said.

"What? Now?"

"Yes, unless you're chicken. Are you afraid?"
Mike says "Me? Of course not."

Meanwhile, the camp's lead scientist studies Bruno. "This is quite a mystery, unless the government has a hidden base here that creating some sort of mutagenic formula. I don't see anything wrong with the water as far as I can see." He speaks into a tape recorder, Subject name: Bruno McDouglas, he has been transformed into a hybrid of both man and bull, though he shows no hostility, I do see an expression of fear. My guess, he's afraid of what he's become. He shows intense muscle growth. By my calculations, he could be strong enough to lift a bulldozer. He has hooves, a head, horns and even a tail of a bull. Judging by the way he looks he's almost 7 1/2 feet tall and weights almost 400 pounds. I will test him later but first, I have to study Blondie Diablo."
As the Scientist opened the Tank to get a look at Blondie, she hit him with her tentacles and jumped out, she dashed over to where there was an open pipe and oozed in
The scientist ran after her but it was too late. Blondie Diablo was already well down the pipe. His teeth started chattering as he realized what he had done - allowed the monster to escape! Should he run away or stay and face the consequences?

Mike and Tommy stood at the edge of the lake. "I don't know," Mike said. "That water looks cold."

"You're chicken!" mocked Tommy, making chicken sounds. "Bwaaaa-bwap-bwap-bwap!"
Mike says "Hey, nobody calls me chicken." Then he dives into the water.

Bruno sat in his cell as he heard noise within the pipe works. "What the hell?" Bruno says to simself. Unknowingly, a tentacle came in from a collapsing sink in his cell.
"Hey you!" It was Blondie's voice "Want to get out of here?"
"Do I?" Bruno said. "You know I do! What are you? Some kind of sewer octopus?"

Mike swam around in the lake. "See? I'm not chicken!" Then he noticed the look on Tommy's face. "What's the matter with you? Why are you staring at me like that?"

"Because you... you... you are a chicken!"

"No, I'm not!" Mike said, but as he lifted his arm out of the water he saw feathers. His arm was a wing!
Mike says "What's *bawk bawk* going *bawk bawk* on?!?"

In his cell, Blondie used her tentacle to grab Bruno's leg "Then let's go." She pulled the Minotaur down the drAin with her, the already bent metal gave way as he went right through it.
The Squid and the Minotaur washed out back into the Lake to see the Arson Kid turn into a Rooster
"Join the club, kid," said the Minotaur.

Tommy pointed at them. "Hey! You're Bruno Douglas and Blondie Diablo! Did you escape?"

"We sure did! Coming with us Mike?"

"I guess I have to," Mike said. "I'm a monster, too, now. Good-bye, Tommy."
Tommy waved "Goodbye Mike and good luck, then they heard the camp's escape alarm sound, Bruno says "We better get going or they'll catch us."
(Is there just going to be three people on this campfire?)

But before they left Mike splashed Tommy with the water, before they bolted, in the dark, Mike could see Tommy growing a bushy tqil and starting to chitter like a Squirrel
"Wait!" Tommy called. "I can't stay here like this! They'll lock me up like they did to you guys!"
Tommy then ran up to them as they walked into the woods.

In the camp, Warden Nash is in what's left of Bruno's container with the lead scientist. "Tell me why this cell is empty? there should be a bull-like monster in here." The scientist says "I was about to study the one called Blondie Diablo, but she jumped me and escaped through the waterworks. I did study the lake water, it seems it has mutagenic properties, anyone who swims or ingests the water, mutates into a monster." The warden turns to the guard and points to the hole "Where does this lead?" The guard says "Into the lake, want us to follow it?" Nash says "No. you'll end up as monsters. I better get Zues and Appolo. They'll be able to track them down before they decide to terrorize kids from neighboring camps." Nash then let out a loud whistle, but instead of two loyal rottweilers. A huge two-headed dog monster comes in.
Blondie looked at her new companions and felt a wave of disgust wash over her
Blondie was disgusted because she wanted to beat the system ands now the system was beating her. Well, maybe not the system, but something was sure ruining her life. She didn't know why she had to have tentacles but it wasn't a look she would have voluntarily chosen for herself.

"Damned dogs!" the warden said. "They must have swum in the lake. Now we have a monster dog. At least it still comes when I whistle."

"This is very interesting," said the scientist. "It has two heads. Perhaps when two very similar animals gop into the lake together they fuse into one animal?"

"Who gives a fig!" said Warden Nash. "I'm not interested in the science of this! I just want those escaped kids collected. Do you have any idea what will happen to us if anyone finds out about all this?"
File Number: 342856

Name: Jeremiah Hood

Gender: Male

Age: 17

Hair Color: Brown

Eye Color: Green

Crime: Computer Hacking, Safe Cracking, and Car Jacking, as well as BnE, and Assault. Broke into a hospital and changed the records of various patients. Claims that the patients were being overcharged, and thus changed the prices for their bills to be lower. Caught by Security, assaulted the guards that came after him, stole a doctor's car, only to be pulled over for speeding. As it turns out, he'd also broken into the Head Doctor's house, and had stolen many of the needed codes from the doctor's safe.

Jeremiah looked at what was going on. He then looked at the rest. "Anyone got a cellphone?"

"Confiscated," said one of them.

"Wouldn't do you any good," said another. "There's no reception out here."

"The Warden has a computer," said a third. "Why, do you want to email your girlfriend or something?"

"No, pass a message onto my father, so that maybe he can get us out of here before something bad happens."

"Is your daddy some sort of mob boss?" the one asked.

"Worse; Sheriff of Madison County," said Jeremiah.

"Then why are you here?" asked one of the others.

"Because my crime was committed in Jefferson County, and the Chief of Police there, and my father, don't like each other, especially after my father took my mother to the Prom, and then married her, instead of him."

"Alright," said the one. "Let's try and contact him; nothing like a little Jurisdiction issue to make things easier for our own escape."

Soon enough, the group was in the Warden's office.

"Keep an eye out guys," Jeremiah said, as he got onto the computer. "I don't know how smart these guys are, and I don't want to be surprised by that dog of his." He then began typing keys, and he found himself looking at the Warden's Homepage. Between the guns and the naked women, Jeremiah was filled with disgust. "At least my father uses an image of the family and the police department for his - claims that a homepage should show people what you value - this doesn't look that good for the Warden here." He then began writing his email when he heard a sound. He looked at the window, and saw the two-headed dog looking right at him.

"What do we do?" the others asked.

"The three of you get out of here, and back to the cabin," Jeremiah said, as he kept typing. "Anyone asks, you didn't know what I was planning. Now, go, before someone sees him and sees you guys as well."

"What about you?" one asked.

"I'll distract him." Jeremiah pressed the "Send" button, and typed in a different link. "Let's see how well you like the dogs' version of Jingle Bells."


Apparently, the dogs didn't like Christmas music, because, just as the others left the room, the creature broke in, busting the computer.

"Well, don't need to cover anything," Jeremiah said, as he ran to the other side of the room, as the creature came in. He then noticed an opening, and ran as fast as he could, slipping past the dog. "Two heads ain't better than one!"

However, the creature busted through another wall, and chased after him.

"Not good." Jeremiah kept running, only to find himself on the dock. "Definitely not good."

"Well, well, Mister Hood," said Warden Nash. "I see you're causing some trouble."

"Not as much as you'll be in when the Senator arrives to find out that you've got five escapees on your hands, among other things," said Jeremiah.

"Five, I only count four," said Nash.

"It's five now!" Jeremiah ran to the end of the dock, and dove in. As he swam, he started changing into something distinctly canine-like. "Any port in a storm," he muttered. "This better be worth it, if I can save the others."
One of the guards says "We better get someone more experience with this, we're trained to handle unruly prisoners, not monsters." Nash says "Okay, call in the army, I want them captured, not killed though, tell them to use non-lethal rounds."
Blondie looked at her companions "I would think since Mike is an arsonist he would be turned into a fire breathing dragon instead of a Rooster."
Mike shrugged. Then he sneezed and a little flame came out of his beak.

"Oh! I see," said Blondie. "You're a fire breathing chicken. Well, that's different."

"What the heck are you?" Mike asked. "My first thought is octopus but I never saw one that ugly before."

The group then heard something splashing in the water.

"Looks like someone else took a swim."

"You can say that again," Jeremiah said, as he got out of the water. He then looked at himself, and a reflection. "Hmm, a fox. I guess that fits."

"So, why did you escape?" Mike asked.

"Sent an email to my father; he's a Sheriff, and first-cousin to the Senator," said Jeremiah. "Told him that people here were being molested, and abused, not to mention being poisoned."

"Why did you tell him that?" Blondie asked.

"Would you believe someone if they told you that people were being mutated?" Jeremiah asked.

"Probably not."

"Good." Jeremiah looked around. "Now, if we can hold out for twenty-four hours, the Senator will be here with our parents, among others, and that's when we can expose ourselves."

"But, couldn't the Warden call out the Army?" Mike asked.

"That's only in the movies," said Jeremiah. "The Governor could get the State Guard, but that would require a State of Emergency. At best, all he could get are the local police, to search for suspected runaways, although the police chief or sheriff might be able to deputize every able-bodied man to help with the search. I doubt that more than a hundred people will come after us. We just need to evade them, and keep out of sight, until we decide to turn ourselves in, to someone we can trust."

"You've thought this out, haven't you?" Tommy asked.

"Helps to know the laws you plan to break," said Jeremiah. "I just didn't count on a judge who was a political rival to my cousin to send me here, instead of having me spend time with my father and go out fishing for a month."


"I thought that I was going to get Community Service, not sent to this place."
Bruno says "I know how you feel Jeramiah. Let's hope your father comes through before Warden Nash convinces the Governor that we are danger to the public."

Meanwhile Warden Nash slams his phone, "That was freaking a waist of time, they need proof." Then he dials another number, "Hello, I want to speak to the Governor. This is Warden Nash, I have 5 escaped prisoners and request a statewide search."
"I think I know why you're a Squirrel." Blondie said to Tommy

"Why?" Asked Tommy

"Cuz Squirrels are Jerks." Blondie said "There was this one Squirrel at my house who loved to throw acorns at my Dog."

"You don't seem like the type of girl who'd have a Dog." Said Mike
Blondie laughed. "Listen to you talking about types of girls. I'll bet you've never had a girlfriend."

Mike blushed. "Maybe not, but I've kissed a girl."

"Ooooo," Blondie said. "Big man!"

Jeremiah looked at Mike. "A chicken? Not my idea of a monster."

"It wasn't my idea, either," Mike said. "I guess when you jump in the lake you become what the lake wants you to become."
Meanwhile, Sheriff Hood was looking at the email he'd gotten.

"Father - I know I'm not supposed to be using a computer, or anything else while I'm at this place, but this is an exception to the rule.

Several of my fellow detainees have been abused, physically and sexually. Those who refuse to do it are drugged. Some have died.

It is for my safety, and that of the others, if you could get our cousin, the Senator, to start an investigation.


A guard just spotted me on the Warden's computer - he's a sick pervert!

If you hear reports of my escape, it's because my life is in danger. Bring help NOW!"

Hood looked at the email again. With a frown, he picked up his phone, and dialed a number. "Hey Chambers! Yeah, you know that little incident involving you hacking the County Treasury and using ten thousand dollars to buy yourself a sixty foot yacht? Yeah, the one where you could be doing ten years if found guilty of doing. I'm willing to cut a deal with you. The kind where you get house arrest, and a tracking bracelet instead of jail time. I need you to look up a Warden Nash of Camp Humolake. It seems he's doing something off the books." He then hung up the phone.

Thirty minutes later, the phone rang, and he picked it up. "What do you have? What? Say again? Chemicals in the lake? Mutations? The Governor? Are you on weed? Alright, a promise is a promise. I'll talk to the judge." He hung up the phone. Then, he picked it up, and dialed another number. "Hiya cousin. Yeah, I need a favor. How close are you to the Governor? That close? He tell you anything about camp Humolake? He did? Well, I have bad news, my son is there, and he says that there's abuse, among other things, going on. Yes, that's right. I think that you should get your friends, and do some investigating of this Warden Nash. Hey, if I have to, I'll call up Grandma Rose, and you know how she can get when she's lecturing someone who won't help out the other members of the family. As it is, I'm going to call up the rest of the family - if you can't handle this politically, or if I can't do this legally, then we'll settle things the Hood way. Yes, I know what that means - everyone will have a gun in their vehicle, just in case. This Nash can't stand against 50 Hoods armed with shotguns and hunting rifles."

Back at the camp, just outside of it, Blondie was talking to Jeremiah. "So, your family has connections to the state government, and they will investigate our escape?"

"Yes," said Jeremiah. "Oh course, if all else fails, there's always the Hood Way."

"What's that?" Mike asked.

"Think Hatfields and MaCoys," said Jeremiah. "Something happens to one Hood, the entire family shows up - weddings, funerals, and blood feuds. Often times, when a Hood goes on the other side of the law, the only way to keep the rest from protecting him is to have a Hood on their side, as a Hood won't harm another Hood."

"Seriously?" Tommy asked.

"Even the black sheep of the family respect a blood connection, and would aid the law, if said lawman was a Hood themselves," said Jeremiah. "Blood is Blood, and a Hood is a Hood."
Bruno says "What do you think is in that lake that changed us? Some forgotten chemical when the camp was used as a secret lab or something?"
"I think it's some sort of VooDoo." Said Blodie
"It's aliens!" Tommy said. "There is a UFO at the bottom of the lake!"
"It doesn't matter what changed us," said Jeremiah. "We've got to avoid being found until someone who can be trusted arrives at camp."
"I suppose your right," Bruno says, "The big question is how do we recognize someone from the Hood clan?"
Just then five very hungry stomachs grumbled
"What do we eat?" Tommy asked.

"Well, you're a squirrel," Mike said, "so I guess you eat nuts. And I'm a chicken, so I'll eat corn, but what that octopus thing eats, I don't know. I just hope it's not chickens."
"Well, I know know a few things about Wilderness Survival," said Jeremiah. "After all, when you live where I live, you need to learn a thing or two."

"Like what?" Tommy asked.

"Making traps to catch small animals, and making an improvised fishing net out of a T-shirt and a Y-shaped branch," Jeremiah said. "That and how to make a fire, and how to cook food without pots and pans."
Bruno gives Jeremiah what's left of his t-shirt "Here's mine, a lot of good it'll do at it's current condition."
"For the record, I'm a Squid not an Octopus." Said Blondie
"Really?" said Mike. "I never knew what the difference was, to tell you the truth. They both have tentacles, right? But if you say you are a squid, that's what I will call you. She's a squid, Tommy."

"I heard. How about helping me find some nuts?"

"Nuts are easy! What about corn? It doesn't grow in the woods, you know."

Tommy shrugged. "Chickens eat more than corn. They also eat worms. There are lots of worms in the woods."

"Oh, barf!" Mike said. "I'm going to have to be pretty damned hungry to eat a worm."
"I have just one question," Bruno asked. "How will we recognize a Hood?"

"I know most of them from the family reunions," said Jeremiah. "There's also the family motto 'Blood is Blood, and a Hood is a Hood'. You start the first part, the other guy finishes it. Then, there's the family story, about two brothers who buried a great treasure at the base of a three-topped oak along the edge of a lake, and swore that they'd come back, and dig it up together."

"Did they dig it up?" Tommy asked.

"No," said Jeremiah. "The second part of the story states that when the war between the states occurred, they hated each other so much, they joined opposite sides, and, supposedly, killed each other at the first battle of Manassas, or Bull Run, or so the claim goes, as their bodies were found right next to each other, though as to whether they did it on purpose, or by accident, or if two others had done the deed, and it was coincidence that they died right next to each other is unknown. Either way, the treasure was never found."

"What was the treasure?" Blondie asked.

"I don't know," said Jeremiah. "Could of been gold, gems, locations to some sort of mine, or just childhood trinkets. As for the location, the lake was like fifty miles from their home, and that home is near where I live, but that still leaves you with a bunch of lakes to check out, including this one."
Bruno says "Who knows, we may possess the treasure and don't even know it." Jeremaih says "I highly doubt that. The Hoods are simple farm folks, not sorcerers."
Blondie snagged cicada with her tentacles and ate it
Mike nudged Tommy with his elbow. "Did you see that? The squid girl ate a bug."

"I know," Tommy said. "Gross!"
"Where do you think chocolate-covered grasshoppers come from?" Jeremiah asked, looking at the two.
Bruno looks down on the ground "Oh well, if I'm a bull might as well eat like one." He eats some grass.
"I'll just fill up on these cicadas. While your doing that." Blondie said "They're not bad, they taste like asparagus."
Mike's stomach rumbled again. He gritted his teeth and said, "I. Will. Not. Eat. A. Worm. I. Will. Not. Eat. A. Worm."

Tommy was jumping up and down. "I found some nuts! I found some nuts!"
Jeremiah walked away from the group, to set up several traps. He then attached the T-shirt to a Y-shaped branch, and lowered it into the water. Now was the waiting game; waiting until a fish, several of them preferably, swam over the shirt, and then for him to slowly lift the shirt-net to the surface, and catch the fish when it was in the open air.
In the camp Warden Nash has visitors from the state health department, he goes up to the gentlemen. "May I help you?" One of the men holds up a warrent, "Due to unsafe conditions of the lake, I order you to shut down this camp." The Warden looks at the warrent and he sees that it's signed by the Governer.
"What makes you think it's unsafe?" asked Warden Nash.

"Good grief, man! Are you totally unaware of the toxic chemical spill in the lake?"

"I might have heard something about it," Nash said.
It was at this moment, a number of cars pulled up, one of them being the car belonging to Sheriff Hood. The officer was wearing his uniform, and he had a look of disappointment on his face as he got out of his car.

"Where is my son?" he asked.

"I don't know what you're talking about," said Nash.

"If my son has come to any harm because of your negligence, you'll be wishing you were never born."

"Is that some sort of threat?" Nash asked.

Hood walked up to him, and grabbed him by the shirt collar. "I don't make threats. I make promises."
Sheriff Hood grabbed the Warden by the collar, "I'm asking you one more time. Where is my son, Jeremiah!?"
It occurred to Warden Nash that if he kept lying about the situation after this intense encounter with the authorities, then probably things would only go worse for him in the end. Maybe now was the time to come clean.

"Alright," Warden Nash said. "Let go of me and I will tell you exactly what has happened."

Warden Nash then related the sorry tale of how the teens had ventured into the lake and become monsters and had then escaped from his holding and were now on the run.

"Unbelievable!" said Sheriff Hood. "This calls fore a massive search effort. We've got to find those kids and help them!"
"That being said, if you did anything to force them to run," said Sheriff Hood. "You'll be in big trouble."
File number: 314152

Name: Aeron Summers

Gender: Female

Age: 17

Hair: chestnut brown, bushy, wavy, tangled, wild

Eye color: dark brown

Record: attempted theft of the Indian Eye (let’s pretend it’s a well known jewel). Was suspect for another theft, though no proof was obtained.

(Truth: proffessional thief.)

An unseen figure slinked away from the scene. "What's going on..." she muttered to herself. Aeron couldn't heplp but feel curious, it was the flaw that had finally gotten her caught.

She had slipped away from the group as soon as she got a notion that something was wrong. If something goes out of control, they will do everything to keep what's already in control, in control, she thought. Especially when they're known for doing wong.
Meanwhile, Jeremiah provided a makeshift camp for him and the rest, currently they are in a middle of a sleep when Bruno heard barking of bloodhounds as he looks at the trees, he saw moving lights and came up with one conclusion, a search party.
"Wake up, guys!" Bruno whispered. He had to shake Mike awake. He was a very sound sleeper.

"What's going on?" Mike asked, rubbing the sleep out of his eyes.

"Search party! Gather up your stuff. We have to move away as quietly as possible."

"But it sounds like they have dogs."

"We'll find a stream to run in and lose our scent trail that way."
"Actually, it would be better if we left a false trail, came back, and hid in a tree," said Jeremiah. "That way we'll be able to know who is following us. If it's my father, we'll reveal ourselves, starting with me. If it's the Warden, stay hidden."
"Sounds like a good enough plan to me," says Mike.

"Let's just get on with it. Who's making the trail and who's staying here?" asks Bruno.
Jeremiah says "Bruno, I need the muscle to help make a tree hideout, so Blondie, Mike and Tommy make a false trail." Blondie says "Okay, so how do we make a false trail?"
"Don't Squids have ink?" Asked the Wolf
"Not a lot of it," Blondie said. "I don't think I could squirt out a mile of it."

"No, nothing so obvious," Jeremiah said. "Just a little ink here and there and break a few twigs. Don't worry, even if you guys do nothing you will be leaving a trail the dogs can follow. Just be sure you double back before they catch up with you."
"How far out do we go?"

"About a hundred yards that way, and then we come back, walking backwards, over our own tracks if possible, and then climb up a tree," said Jeremiah.
"Yeah, this sounds alright," says a voice from the shadows. "But haven't you forgotten that Bruno could see the lights from here? Give me some of your stuff and I'll make the trail. A girl steps out of the shadows.

Even now everyone could hear the dogs barking.
Bruno says "I heard of you, you're that jewel thief Aeron Summers." Blondie asks "Why are you helping us?" Jeremiah says, "We don't have time for questions now, quickly do what she asks and get up the tree. Those dogs sound like they're getting closer."
Blondie didn't like this newcomer but she had no choice
Fortunately, it was a very large tree.

"I feel right at home up here," Tommy said.

"I guess so," replied Mike, "since you're a squirrel. I, on the other hand, feel very uncomfortable. Do you have any idea what would happen to an egg if you dropped it from up here?"

"Of course I have an idea! Geez, Mike, you're becoming dumb as a chicken. Try harder!"
"Tray quiet," said Jeremiah. "At least until we are sure about our searchers' identities."
Blondie, with her doubts, climbed higher than the others to keep an eye on Aeron. "Just don't look directly down," she said to herself, though heights usually didn't bother her.

Meanwhile, the searchers entered the used-to-be camp.
One of the searchers says "Sheriff, my dog found this." He holds up the makeshift net that Jeremiah used to catch fish. Sheriff Hood says "No doubt my son made this. Cleaver Jeremiah, T-shirt to a Y shaped branch." The searchers continue as the dogs follow the scent until they came to the big tree their hiding.
"The dogs sound happy, sheriff," said a searcher.

Sheriff Hood looked up in the tree. "That's because they know who they've found. My son. Although I don't think I could recognize him if he wasn't grinning at me. I'd know that grin anywhere, even on a fox. Son, you have gotten yourself into a heap of trouble."
"Say to Nash when you see his dog," said Jeremiah. "The damn thing attacked me when I sent that email."
"Can we come down now?" another voice called from the tree.
Hood shined the flashlight on the tree and saw. Blondie, Bruno, Tommy and Mike. "Squirrels, I'll understand. But when does Bulls, Squids and Roosters climb trees?" Bruno says "I was human before I took a dip in that lake Sheriff?"
Blondie spat out Ink "Squid's can climb." She said
Mike half jumped, half fluttered, down from the tree. The dogs immediately started barking again. If they hadn't been on leashes they would have attacked him.

"A chicken boy!" said Sheriff Hood. "And I thought a fox boy was bad news."

"Don't ask for any eggs," Mike said.
"Could be worse," said Jeremiah. "You should see Nash's dog."
Aeron chose that moment to appear from behind a tree. "I'm sure both I and Mr Hood would appreciate an explanation of how you became these weird ... animal thingys."

"Well", said the sheriff. "I am curious, but if my own son doesn't tell me, then he has a good enough reason to keep it a secret, and you need not go a-meddling in it."
Bruno says "If you really want to know, here's what happened. First Blondie transformed when she drank the lake water, then I did, I was still shackled to her and she dunked me in the lake when she went berserk. Then we saw Mike as a chicken when Blondie and I made our daring escape, then Tommy joined us, finally Jeremiah met with us. So I'd say the lake had something to do with our transformations."
"It's clear to me that someone cursed the lake." Said Blondie
"Cursed?" said Tommy. "Don't tell me you believe in witchcraft!"

"Why not?" Blondie asked. "Obviously something weird has happened."

"Yeah, but it's probably got a scientific explanation like toxic chemicals in the lake or something."

"I don't know, Tommy," Mike said. "How could chemicals work so fast and completely transform us? Bawwwwp!"

"Are you getting ready to lay an egg?"

"No, that's just how I burp now. Bawwwwp!"

Aeron rubbed her eyes. A chicken a squirrel, a squid, and a fox. Was this really happening?
"Hey, I think that our sentences should get commuted for this," said Jeremiah. "I mean, that stuff could have killed us."
"Yeah, alright," says Blondie. "So now our objective is to shut down this camp?
Unfortunately, Warden Nash is too stubborn to have the camp shut down due to in fact it's been turned into correctional facility for Juvenile Delinquents, in other words a Detention Center. "Shut down the Camp!?" Warden Nash says, "These are hardened teenage criminals, not kids that spend the summer having fun and making friends, They shouldn't be even be swimming in that lake because the only activity I expect them to do is just think about of the crimes they've done and not do it again."
Sheriff Hood sympathized with the teens. "I'm sorry, kids, but the law says I have to send you back to the camp. After all, it's not the warden's fault the lake is toxic and he told you not to swim in it. But don't worry, we are working on getting you out. It just takes time with this legal system."
"Make sure to post a couple dozen signs around the lake then," said Jeremiah.
"No, I'm gonna be afraid of all water around here now," said Aeron. "But thanks for trying to get us out."

"This place should be a lab," continiues Blondie. "Not a detention center. It's a danger to the public."

"Hey!" Tommy calls out suddenly. "I wonder what would happen if we drank out of the lake again. I mean, it changed us, so maybe it will change us back again?"

"Or into something worse..." mutters Mike.
Just then a prison bus came in escorted by military jeeps, each with MPs except the lead jeep where a Colonel is escorted "Warden Charles Nash," he said, "I am Colonel Keith Harris, by the order of the president, Camp Humolake is herby closed due to polluted waters, I managed to clear a transfer the rest of the Juvinile prisoners to the Patton Detention Center, as for these 5." He snaps his fingers and MPs went up to Bruno, Blondie, Tommy, Mike and Jeremiah and points their MK12s at them. "They will be studied."
"$(@!!" Said Blondie
Tommy whispered to Aeron, "I'm going to run down to the lake and see what happens if I drink some of it."

"No!" Aeron said. "It might make you worse off. At least you're a nice friendly squirrel now."

"I've got to try it!" Tommy said and ran toward the lake.

Aeron ran after him yelling, "Wait, Tommy! Don't do it!"
Sheriff Hood walked up to Colonel Harris. "I'd strongly advise against taking them away to be studied like lab rats."

"I have my orders," the Colonel said.

"And I have a family obligation to see to it that my son is not dissected like some frog," said the Sheriff. "Also, look over at those cars."

The colonel took a look. "Some sort of hunting trip going on?"

"That would be my family, and no one takes a Hood without getting permission from the rest of the Hoods," the Sheriff said. "They'll even fight to protect their family members."
In all the ruckus Jeremiah also tried to slip away. The personpointing a gun at him had keen eyes, though. He caught Jeremiah.

"We're going back to the lab now, or I'll blow your feathered friend's brain up!" he said. Just then Mike, under his right arm, coughed a spurt of fire.

Meanwhile Aeron tried to catch Tommy, but you know how hard it is for a human to outrun a squirrel. As soon as she saw the edge of the lake she gave up, stood by a tree and watched. She would be needed in this form enough for now.

Something was nagging at her, in the back of her mind. You know how water evaporates, shouldn't that happen to the lake's water too? If she was sensitive enough to that stuff ... no, not only her, the whole world could go humanimal!!!

Then Tommy came back. He looked completely normal, except for that he was on the ground on all fours, and squeaking like a chipmunk.

Aeron groaned. "Oh Tommy, what have you done."

Then he got up laughed, and said: "Just kidding, but look at this!!! It's super cool. He turned into a squirrel, and back again.

"Hey, I want some of that!" yelled Aeron. She ran down to the lake and started drinking the water. She started growing the wings of a falcon, and her nose and mouth melted into a beak. Then she grew a tail.

"Hmm, it seems the lake can't tell what you are," Tommy said thoughtfully. Aeron kept on changing, growing the ears of a cat, gaining the spots of a leopard, even the tusks of an elephant and the (legs) of a serpent and monkey tail, etc etc. At last, she just reverted back to human form.

"I wanted to be cool, like you," she says.

"Squirrels aren't so cool," answered Tommy.

"We can't let anyone find out about this," continued Aeron. "If anyone else finds out the scientists will be even more interested in me than all of you!!! Swear you won't tell anyone, swear," she begged Tommy.

Just then the other four appeared out of the trees. "Looks like you're one of us now," Blondie says, her squid mouth turning into a grimace which must've been a tried (smug) smile.

(Note to others: Sorry, I really went all out there, I just couldn't stop myself right now. And I can't take it back either, that just wouldn't feel right to me.)
Bruno looked at Aeron "My guess, you look like some kind of gryphon." Tommy says "A gryphon?" Bruno says "You know, a creature part lion, part eagle. Except in Aeron's case, part falcon."
"You look like a badly clashing outfit." Blondie said "At least I'm uniform."
"But can you change back to human form like I can?" Aeron asked.

"That is a good trick," Tommy said. "I wonder why only you can do it? There must be some sort of changeling gene in your DNA."

"Do you even know what you are talking about?" Mike asked Tommy.

"No, not really," Tommy said.
"I think we have bigger problems," said Jeremiah.
Just then they heard a rustling coming from bushes a little way to the left.

"Run," Aeron whispers hoarsely, though the warning isn't needed.

"Split up," Jeremiah whispers louder. "Blondie, Mike, come with me, the rest of you..."

Everybody except for Jeremiah had already started running, even in different directions. "You coming or not?" Blondie asked, in a soft but nonchalant voice.
Tommy and Bruno are at the shore of the lake, "Quickly," Tommy said, "We'll cross the lake to the other side, they won't follow us into it." Bruno asks "Are you sure about that?" Tommy says "Yes, I'm sure. Come on." Tommy dove into the lake but when Bruno is about to dive, he felt something sharp hitting him in the back and felt drowsy, he ended up on the forest floor asleep.
Blondie was starting to feel herself drying out
"Uh oh!" Blondie said. "I need to get wet and the lake is the only source of water in these woods. What a bind!"

Tommy was swimming across the lake when he felt himself changing. Somehow he could swim faster. His tail seemed stronger. He looked back at it and gasped. It was an alligator tail!

He was turning into some kind of squirrel-gator that was half squirrel and half alligator. He still had the adorable furry head of a squirrel, but his body was growing scales.

"It's because my head is not in the water," he thought.
"I hate jurisdiction friction," said Jeremiah.
(What is jurisdiction friction?)

Aeron had run to a tree in the forest and climbed it.
Bruno woke up in a makeshift cell, Col. Harris looking at him holding a clipboard "So, the bull is finally awaken. I can't wait for the boys at the Pentagon study you and your friends. Usually it's deadly to take a toxic bath, not only did you manage to survive but you got mutated into something matching on what you are. A bully according to your records." Then Sheriff Hood burst in, "Col. Harris. You can't do this, this isn't right."
Blondie was crawling back to the lake she was dying
Blondie almost made it to the water but collapsed when she was still a few feet away.

Aeron jumped down from her tree. The poor squid! Aeron wanted to help it but she was afraid to touch it. It looked so gross with all those tentacles. What if it wrapped its tentacles around her?
(Jurisdiction friction is where the cops from Section A have a dispute with the cops from Section B over who gets to investigate a case, like Homicide Department Verses Robbery Department, County A Versus County B, Local Versus Fed, State Versus State, FBI versus ATF - usually happens when a criminal commits multiple crimes in multiple jurisdictions - sometimes the different agencies will work together, and then other times they will argue over who has the pressing need on the case. See the comedy cop film Supper Troopers for an excellent, and humorously exaggeration of this, where two police forces, in one instance, have a fight over who would get the lead on a murder case.)

Jeremiah saw Blondie. "Hold on." He then carefully picked up the squid-girl, and placed her in the water. "I hope this helps."

Meanwhile, Sheriff Hood and Colonel Harris were still arguing.

"Aren't you out of your jurisdiction, Sheriff?" the Colonel asked.

"That's true, but you are way out of your jurisdiction," the Sheriff said. "This is a Civilian matter, not a Military one. I'd advise that you ask for the FBI, or the US Marshals, or perhaps the ATF, or whomever it is that does have the legal jurisdiction in this case. Hell, this might be a case for the EPA, due to the environmental impact that pollution stuff could have. After that, get out."

"Do you realize the potential military applications this stuff might have?" the Colonel asked.

"Do you realize that there are currently fifty people within easy reach of a firearm less than a hundred yards from you?" the Sheriff asked. "By law, you cannot take these people, because it's not like they are a military unit that went rogue, nor are they a hostile military force."

"Do you realize that you are threatening the military with armed insurrection?"

"To which I'll defend myself by claiming that I saw what looked to be a kidnapping, and therefore was doing my job to prevent it," said the Sheriff. "As it is, given than no one is armed, it could hardly be called an armed insurrection."
Col. Harris says "What are you going to do?" Sheriff Hood says "Simple, I'm taking your specimen here along with the others and put them somewhere where it's beyond your reach." The Colonel just chuckles, "How are you going to do that? I have soldiers everywhere." Just then, one of the Sheriff's guards snatches the cell key from a hook on the wall and tosses it to the Sheriff where he catches it. "I have soldiers of my own, we Hoods spare no expense." He opens the cell door "Come big guy, time for you to get out of here." Col. Harris says "You can't do this, that's government property." The Sherriff just shook his head "Not anymore," he then turns to his guard "Come, we need to get the rest before the soldiers do."
Put into the lake Blondie began to re hydrate, in the lake she started turning into a Non-Humanoid Squid
Uh-oh, Blondie thought. This is not good. And why do I have a sudden craving to catch one of these little fish and eat it?

Tommy was hiding in the woods. He was now basically an alligator with the head of a squirrel who could talk. "How did I get into this?" he kept mumbling over and over.

That's how Mike found him. "Bawwwwp! Tommy! More changes?"

"Yeah, dude. That damn lake is hell, man!"
Jeremiah was watching this. "Jesus H. Christ! What's going on here?"
Then Sheriff Hood says "Well son, it seems that Col. Harris is about to use you all for military applications in which I won't approve." Jeremiah then turns around, "Geez Dad, warn me when you come. Not that," he points to Tommy and Blondie, "That." The Sheriff then looks "I was afraid of this, it seems the lake is mutating them even more. Wait here with Bruno while I get the rest. Then we'll head back home where the lake water is fresh."
Meanwhile Blondie's Mom sensed a disturbance in the force
"Darth?" she yelled at her husband.

"I hear you!" he called back from the den.

"I sense a disturbance in the Force, honey. Do you suppose everything is alright with Blondie?"

"I don't have a crystal ball!" he yelled. "Can't you just call her?"

"No," she said. "They don't allow phones at that camp."

"Then I guess we'll just have to put up with the Force being disturbed, won't we?"

"No, certainly not. I'm going to drive up there and see what's going on."

"Oh, for heavens sakes. Don't drive there by yourself. I'll go with you."
"Well, what did you think I was going to do? Call up Yoda?"
As Blondie's parents are going out to the car, Aeron was sitting in a tree, watching the action, feeling sorry for herself. Well, I can fly off now, she thought. But that wouldn't be such a good idea, thinking about all the Harry Potter fans out there waiting for some sign of the magical world.

And as Aeron was sitting up in the tree feeling sorry for herself, the coloniel was getting more and more restless.

"These kids are basically criminals already", Col. Harris near shouted inside the building. "And now they're monsters AS WELL!" he did start shouting.
One of the Sheriff's deputies was within earshot of the Colonel's rant radioed in "Sheriff, this is Deputy Greene, it looks like the Colonel is out for blood, better get the kids to a safe haven before he catches up."
"Roger that," said Sheriff Hood. "Alright, let's get those kids into a barn somewhere."

"A barn?" said a deputy. "They're not animals."

"We've got to hide them. If you have a better idea then spit it out now."
"Um, Dad, what about your old pal, Sheriff Henson," Jeremiah suggested.

Sheriff Hood laughed. "The only thing he hates worse than me, for stealing the loveliest girl in five counties, is Federal Interference!"

"Just don't tell him that you were in his territory, again," said Jeremiah.
(OK, time to close up this campfire.)

A voice says "I don't mean to pry, but I know a place to hide these mutated kids." Sheriff Hood looked around an saw someone in a Hazmat suit. "Excuse m me?" The figure then removes the hood of a suit revealing an old man with glasses "The name's Dr. Eugene Sinclair, sorry to say due to a miscalculation, we're the ones who polluted the water with mutative chemicals." Bruno says "What is that stuff that turned me into this?" Dr. Sinclair says "The working name is called Miracle juice and as you can see, it still in the experiment stage." Jeremiah says "So I see," Dr. Sinclair says "I can reverse the effects, as soon as my colleges extract the chemicals from the lake, we can turn them back to human." Sheriff Hood says "That's fine with me." Dr. Sinclair says "I can have my colleges get the rest of the kids and bring them back to the lab, just tell me about them."
Dr. Sinclair took Sheriff Hood and all 6 mutations to a secret lab almost mile and a half Southwest of the camp. Were a retro-mutagen is immediately done, Jeremiah was first injected and within seconds he reverted back to human, Blondie followed suit, though she didn't enjoy being human at first, but all good things must come to an end. As for Tommy, Mike and Aeron, they all felt relieved that their human again. To keep them from Col. Harris' they were all reported dead, killed by radioactivity and the Hood Clan has new members.

The End!

© Copyright 2015 Hertzman, Twiga, Steev the Friction Wizurd, BIG BAD WOLF Feels Lucky, Raven Sharp, (known as GROUP).
All rights reserved.
GROUP has granted Writing.Com, its affiliates and its syndicates non-exclusive rights to display this work.
Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/campfires/item_id/2047320-The-Magic-of-Camp-Humolake