Twins’ Tall Tales: The Man-Eating Squid
“Have we told you about the man-eating squid?” Fred asked Ginny and Ron. Ron stood next to his messy trunk, his clothes splayed across his bed and floor. Fred and George decided to seize upon this perfect opportunity. Their little brother was packing his Hogwarts trunk. Well, they couldn’t let him go without having a bit of fun. What was more, Ginny had entered the room.
“What’s the man-eating squid?” Ron inquired reluctantly. Ginny’s eyes grew to the size of Galleons and focused attentively on her older brothers.
“I’m surprised you haven’t heard about it from Charlie! After all, he’s the only living survivor,” Fred said. “The man can tame dragons, it shouldn’t be a surprise. The rest of us, however, don’t stand a chance.“
George continued, “Charlie had just finished a grueling Quidditch practice and decided to take a stroll by the lake. It was a brisk, blustery day. Certainly not the kind of weather you would expect when creatures arise from the depths. Our unsuspecting brother paced by the lakeside, kicking sand into the shallows. Little did he know, the man-eating squid was stirred by the flecks of sand dancing on the edge of its dark lair.
“In the distance, Charlie saw something white splash on the water’s surface. He thought it must be a fish until several ‘fish’ leaped out of the water to support a massive pointed shape wading closer. The giant man-eating squid swam toward him with immense speed. Charlie was glued to the shore with shock until the monster’s razor-sharp pointed head was feet from him, its tentacles cascading from its grotesque fleshy body. Its eyes were as big as Charlie’s arms, staring intently at its prey. Two tentacles whipped around Charlie’s back and gripped him tightly in an inescapable hold; the muscular suckers scattered along the tentacles suctioned to Charlie’s dewy skin. Its head leaned backward to reveal a snapping beak in the center of its many powerful tentacles. While the rest of its body was pale white, the squishy area around its mouth was dyed red from the blood of its victims.”
Fred interjected with an air of importance, “They say there are two things the squid will do to you. If he tastes you, and you’re found delicious, he’ll eat you in one bite. If he doesn’t find you worthy of eating, he’ll possess your soul and drag you down to the darkest belly of the lake. His mermaid spies will hold you captive and work you as a slave until you perish from old age or exhaustion.”
At this, Ginny and Ron cowered on the bed together, Ginny’s clenched knuckles turning white.
“How did Charlie escape?” demanded Ron. “How can Dumbledore let something like that lose on school grounds?”
“The squid has been there for centuries – not even Dumbledore knows how to destroy the creature. They think its magic stems from ancient times. Some say it’s the descendant of the notorious Kraken,“ Fred replied, savoring his grand delivery and the terrified reaction of his siblings.
“As for how Charlie escaped,” said George, “he doesn’t even know. He stared down the brute with such ferocity that its tentacles slipped from his shoulders. In a moment of freedom, he grabbed his broom he had dropped in the chaos and shot off like a bullet before the man-eating squid could regain its senses.“
“Do you know what Charlie did wrong?” Fred asked Ron and Ginny, who were both impressed by Charlie and scared of their impending school career. They shook their heads.
“He ate less than an hour before he went near the lake. That, and the combination of kicking sand in the water, was enough to lure the beast out of hiding.” Fred crossed his arms and grinned at his brother and sister. “Remember kids: Don’t go swimming for at least an hour after eating.“
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