AN Abergavenny man who was spiked with acid by a psychic called Steve while on an illegal boar hunt has warned that the Forest of Dean is cursed by a half-pig, half-man creature that is as “old as the hills and twice as mean!”

Semi-professional long-distance runner Johnny Turnip explained, “After being dosed by a fella we thought was a necromancer but in reality was a tarot card reader and crystal ball caresser called Steve, me and the boys confronted the predatory wizard to ask why he tried to blow our minds with drugs!”

Turnip added, “Big Tony in particular was livid! Thanks to the LSD he’d spent the best part of two hours thinking he was a German Shepard called Prince. That’s a tough blow for a proud man like Tone to take and from his stony silence, I could deduce he was ready to gouge Psychic Steve’s eyes out with a spoon and boil them.

“Fortunately, as a natural diplomat, I managed to keep the frenzied violence at bay by appealing to Tone’’s better nature and giving the necromancer a chance to explain his feral-like behaviour before Big Tony battered him like a sausage.”

Turnip told the Chronicle, “The magic man had hinted at some sort of prophecy involving three unwise men and the gift of immortality. As a supernatural investigator, I wanted to know more.”

Turnip said that after they had made themselves comfortable on the bean bags situated in Psychic Steve’s “well-presented and orderly” cabin, the would-be necromancer explained that he had his sidekick Indiana Jenkins spike their whiskey to prepare their minds for the “unimaginable and impossible!”

“He needn’t have bothered,” revealed Turnip. “It was a waste of acid! As a supernatural investigator, I’ve seen and done things that would make your average man eat his own fingers like they were made out of fish. Same rules apply to Big Tony and Puerto Rico Paul! There’s simply nothing we won’t believe!”

Turnip revealed that after being called out as a fraud at various seances he had held in village halls around Monmouthshire, Psychic Steve had fled to the top of the Skirrid mountain to study high magic with a fabled wizard known as Earl Elderflower.

Turnip said, “Apparently, this Elderflower is the real deal. A proper necromancer like Gandalf or something. He travels all over the UK acting wise, casting spells and telling people the future but for three nights a year, you can find him on top of the Skirrid in a tent. It’s probably why it’s called the ‘Holy Mountain.’

“Psychic Steve went up there one night to fry some sausages with him, or whatever wizards do together, and he told Steve that the Forest of Dean is home to the world’s only half-pig, half-man creature. It’s like a werewolf but less cool. A sort of werepig! Elderflower referred to it as the ‘Gruntarunt!’ But that sounds a bit too Nazi for me. I like Homotrotter better!

“Anyhow, it turns out this man pig beast was once a local from a nearby village and his name was Dean. We’re going back a good thousand years here mind, but the story goes that one day this young lad was wandering in the forest on his own, looking for mushrooms or whatever they did in the Middle Ages to pass the time, when he was attacked by a wild pig.

A pig
(Someone's telling porkies! A.H. Baker Wikipedia Commons)

“Dean was savaged quite badly by the boar and had most of his left leg and buttocks eaten away as he tried to crawl for cover. Nevertheless, he survived the attack and managed to find his way home to his village, only to die three hours later.

“The story should have ended there but a week after he was buried, Dean’s grave was dug up and his corpse had gone missing. Pretty soon, reports started to come in thick and fast about a man who looked like a pig that was attacking and eating villagers in the moonlight.

“The villagers soon realised that their friend Dean had transformed by some terrible curse into a hellish hog who would happily drink their blood and feast on their flesh. From then on the expanse of nameless woodland just outside their village became known as the Forest of Dean!”

Turnip added, “For years people familiar with the story knew to avoid the Forest. No living creature would venture there except the hordes of wild boars, many of which were said to be sired by Dean in an unnatural union with an old Sow he had fallen in love with.

“As time ticked on, memories faded, old people died and the stories of how the Forest was named became lost and people began to once more wander into its dark depths. For years the Homotrotter had laid in a deep slumber because his terrible appetites could not be assuaged, but as living things once again began to venture into the forest, Dean slowly awoke and began eating them.

“Fortunately, he has lost his taste for human flesh, but he had developed an insatiable appetite for sausage dogs. And many a dachshund who has wandered from its owner’s side has met an untimely end in the Forest.

“Yet the real reason Dean is now a source of interest to men who live and breathe magic is not because he poses a serious threat to sausage dogs, but because he is immortal and it is said that those who drink his blood will also be bequeathed the gift of eternal life!”

The Holy Grail
(The Grail that was promised? Public Domain )

Turnip explained, “We all got very interested at this point, particularly when Psychic Steve said that Elderflower had also told him about an old man of the woods named Indiana Jenkins who had been bitten by the Homotrotter and had not only survived but thrived for the past 500 years! The very same Indy who had helped Psychic Steve spike our whiskey because according to the prophecy long written down, we were the three unwise men who would help end the curse!”

Turnip added, “As me, Big Tony, and Puerto Rico Paul looked at each other slyly, we began to slowly grin like three handsome devils. We were back in business, the pig hunt was on, and me and the boys were going to live forever! Let there be blood!”