CHAPTER EIGHTEEN- There's always a catch.
Barbara Meadows was kind enough to wait until after dinner to start in on her husband on the subject of climbers, and how to catch them. Ray was thankful for that, at least. But he also still hoped against hope to put the whole mess out of his mind and get on with life. His life, anyway. No luck. The tables had been turned and she was a woman with a mission. Stand back.
"I've got the answer to the problem."
"I didn't know we had a problem."
"The climbers. I know how we can catch them."
Barbara answered his question by slapping a pair of rubber gloves on the kitchen table- the big power company gloves.
"So- it's going to be one of those nights, is it?"
Ray took a moment for all that to settle down before he added anything to it. The conversation was confusing enough as it was.
"Why do we want to catch a climber? I thought we were going to let the sleeping blue furry thing just lie there and get on with our lives."
"Ray, we can't just go on. They're out there."
"Good place for them. We're in here. Works for me."
"Ok . . . . ?"
"Look, we've gone over this before. We have to find out what they are-"
"We have to find out if they are."
"We have to catch one. It would show Vaan's family that he wasn't imagining these things. It would vindicate this Arthur Crutchfield guy who wrote the book…"
"And it would be an adventure."
"Face it, Ray, we're stuck in a rut."
"And here all this time I thought we were cruising in the groove."
"You know what I mean. Same thing, day after day. Nothing changes."
"Ok, you want an adventure. Couldn't we just go on a trip or something?"
"And get what out of it?"
"I don't know- The lure of exotic places?"
"Like where? Iowa? Nebraska?"
"The lure of the open road?"
"The lure of gas station rest rooms is gone, Ray. Long gone."
"You really want to do this?"
"Yes, I really do."
"For the adventure?"
"Well, that and the fame and fortune."
"Fame? Fortune? Which one eluded you?"
"Both, I guess. What do you mean?"
"Ray, think about it: a whole new weird animal out there. Only a handful of people have ever seen one. It's like bigfoot."
"Without the smell."
"Exactly. We could be world famous for having captured one."
"If we lived. Otherwise, we'll only be worth a short paragraph in News of the Weird under the heading, 'Least Dignified Death'."
"That's why I got the gloves. We can hold one without getting shocked."
"Ok, say we catch one of these things."
"We catch one of these things."
"Thank you. Now what do we do with it? Where do we keep it?"
"Could you build some sort of cage or something in the basement?"
"Oh, that sounds comfy."
"It wouldn't be staying there long."
"What are we going to do? Housebreak the thing and teach it to fetch the paper?"
"No, I was thinking more along the lines of offering it to the Indianapolis Zoo."
"So we catch it, hold it and sell it and everyone lives happily every after?"
"You've got it."
"Except the climber."
"What about the climber? What say does it have in all this?"
"Hello? Ray? It's an animal. It doesn't talk."
"A week ago you didn't think it even existed. Now you’re ready to skin 'em for their fur. Real change of pace there."
"I am not. These things are worth far more alive."