Inching towards mediocrity.


Mongolian Death Worm Discovered; Fact, Hoax or Elaborate Cover-Up?

The Mongolian Death Worm, a creature long believed to only exist in legend, has been discovered. It was discovered recently by crypto-zoologist Dr. Raymond Gavan in the Gobi Desert in an expedition that Dr. Gavan himself describes as “a wholly, and completely, wrong-headed idea.”

Dr. Gavan, a graduate of Paranormal Psychology at Kingston’s Queens University, has been a self-described “obsessive of all things unexplained” for years. Focusing his studies more on the paranormal than the zoological, Dr. Gavan had only heard about the science cryptozoology in passing from his colleague and mentor, Dr. Mortimer Schell. It was Schell himself who first brought the legendary death worm to Dr. Gavan’s attention.

Dr. Raymond Gavan.

“Cryptozoology,” Dr. Gavan explains, “is the study of creatures believed to be legendary, mythical, or otherwise outside of the usual realm of biology.”

This can include anything from the legendary Bigfoot, the el Chupacabra, or the ongoing myth that some dinosaurs still exist in certain parts of the world, isolated from humanity. It is not technically recognized as a “real science,” though it has supporters within the scientific community.

Authors Ben Roesch and John Percy Moore were quoted in Michael Shermer’s “The Skeptic Encyclopedia of Pseudoscience” as saying “Cryptozoology ranges from pseudoscientific to useful and interesting, depending on how it is practiced.” They further note that it is “not strictly a science”, that “many scientists and skeptics classify cryptozoology as a pseudoscience” and that “papers on the topic are rarely published in scientific journals, no formal education on the subject is available, and no scientists are employed to study cryptozoology.”

So why cryptozoology? Dr. Gavan explains:

“It was not my major in college, nor is it my current vocation; it is more of a hobby, really, an extension of my own curiosities. Science is exact, which can be limiting. Cryptozoology allows me to think beyond the usual facts and formulas and accepted regimes of what is known to humankind. And, on a more personal note, the idea of making a brand new discovery at a time when new discoveries are limited, was far to tantalizing to completely pass up as well.”

Dr. Gavan’s talk about cryptozoology and new discoveries of course begs the question: why the Mongolian Death Worm? Wouldn’t the sasquatch or the Loch Ness Monster be less difficult, and more important a discovery anyways?

“Both the sasquatch – or Bigfoot, if you prefer – and the monster of Loch Ness have already been highly covered,” Dr. Gavan explains. “Multiple searches have been conducted for both of these creatures, and have yet to yield any results. The death worm, however, has been more or less ignored by most cryptozoologists. Whether this is due to the worm’s lack of infamy, or due to the supposed dangerous nature of it, is irrelevant. For whatever reason, the story of the Mongolian Death Worm intrigued me more than any other – I vowed that should anyone finally prove this creatures existence, it would be me.”

Page from a rare text that shows an early interpretation of the Mongolian Death Worm.

When pressed about whether or not his views on a “tantalizing new discovery” still held up after his disastrous expedition into the Gobi Desert, Dr. Gavan shrugged his shoulders and lit up a cigarette.

“In some ways, the expedition was a wholly, and completely, wrong-headed idea. I suppose the combination of my desire to discover this creature, along with any nagging doubts about its actual existence, attributed to my ignorance of the danger at hand. We were warned, thoroughly warned, but my ambition would not be deterred.”

Dr. Gavan took that moment to pause, visibly shaken. Was the creature as terrifying as myth makes it out to be?

“It…yes. Very much so,” Dr. Gavan continued, regaining some composure. “It haunts me to this day – it will always haunt me, I’m sure of it. But it’s him…it’s his face that will haunt me more.”

The “him” that Dr. Gavan refers to is fourth-year journalism student and aspiring videographer, Martin Becker. Becker, who was also a student of Queens University, had responded to an advertisement deployed by Gavan to find a suitable person to document the events of the expedition. He had accepted Becker’s application based on the young man’s talent, his attendance of Gavan’s Alma matter, and the fact that he was young, eager and freelance. As Gavan himself puts it: “I was concerned about presenting this idea to a professional journalist – I assumed that they would never take me seriously, and therefore never accept the position. There was also a money issue,” Gavan pauses to grin sheepishly. “Martin, though…he seemed more excited about the prospect of our trip than even I. And he came cheap.”

Undated photo of Martin Becker at school, prior to his association with Raymond Gavan.

Indeed, the young aspiring journalist did come cheap – but he would be the one to pay the price.

“We had been tracking the Death Worm for three and a half days,” Dr. Gavan explains. “Our data regarding its movements was inconsistent, but we didn’t let that deter us. There was myself, Dr. Schell, Martin, two locals, and a survival expert by the name of Howard Tremaine. We were careful – or at least as careful as our enthusiasm would allow us. Mortimer, Martin and myself were pretty excited about the mission; the locals seemed more or less ambivalent, and Tremaine was just there for the paycheck. And to keep us safe.” Dr. Gavan pauses again, thoughtful. “He didn’t believe.”

Howard Tremaine, a minor celebrity for his survival show “Trailblazing Tremaine” and his profanity laden rants within that, was skeptical from the beginning about the Death Worm’s existence. After the events in the Gobi Desert, however, he became a believer.

Publicity still of Howard Tremaine from his show "Trailblazing Tremaine."

“I took it as a bit of a lark, to be honest,” Tremaine told me over the phone. “Mongolian Death Worm? I’ve seen a lot of (bleep) in my time, but come on. This (bleep) is a bit much to believe in, innit? A five foot long (bleeping) worm that spits (bleeping) acid at its prey? And no one has ever seen this (bleeping) thing? It’s just a bit (bleeping) much.”

Regardless of his earlier concerns about the validity of Dr. Gavan’s claims, Tremaine was still intrigued by Gavan’s proposition.

“Yeah, sure, why the (bleep) not?” Tremaine continues. “I’ve never gone on a wild (bleeping) goose chase before – figured it could be a bit of (bleeping) fun.”

And fun it was – at least, initially. Unfortunately, the search for the Mongolian Death Worm was about to take a sinister turn – a turn that would not only change the lives of all those involved, but turn Raymond Gavan into a criminal suspect. For murder.

Part Two of the Death Worm discovery will continue tomorrow.

[Disclaimer: Clearly, this is a work of pure fiction. While the Mongolian Death Worm is a genuine cryptid (the name given to any mythic creature that cryptozoologists believe in, it has not been discovered. (That I know of). Any resemblance between the characters within this piece to actual people, living or dead is purely coincidental – and kind of cool! I hope you enjoy this bit of entertainment journalism – just trying something new!]

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3 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Cool Story Bro. But seriously, not bad at all. Keep em coming!

Comment by kennyg

Thank you, sir. I’m glad you enjoyed it!

Comment by Luciano Galasso

Well Raymond Gavan stangely like me I am also very interested in the paranormal having had several experiences with this from childhood and I was rather amazed at a younger namesake also had the same interest,Raymond I live in Australia and found your articles great!!

Comment by Raymond Gavan




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