The Fox Trapper – Letter 9

To the family of Mr. Wilbur Popbottom,

My name is Arthur Sleevington and I am the Sheriff of Charleston, West Virginia. I am writing to inform you of the where-abouts of one Wilbur Popbottom and it may come as quite a shock to you so please, before you read on, have a seat. If you are already seated, you may like to lie down, but I understand if this is a bit excessive.

We’ve burned Mr. Popbottom at the stake. It seemed the only correct punishment for such a heinous, heinous crime.

You see, in the words of Mr. Popbottom, he felt that it would be some pumpkins to sneak into the houses of innocent townsfolk and stab them repeatedly while they sleep. He did this on 9 separate occasions, and after the ninth instance we found him in a nearby barn, passed out next to a blood-drenched knife and a small cage containing a field mouse. We carried Wilbur to the jail, locked him in shackles and force-fed him bread until he had the energy to speak. We believe that he went mad due to malnutrition, judging by the deep, dark circles under his eyes and his extreme frailty.

Wilbur, on the other hand, told me a very different story. During his questioning, he informed me that the mouse that was accompanying him politely requested that he stab the next person he meets. I assume the rodent asked this for enjoyment’s-sake, which is all the more sickening. Wilbur later told us that as the days went on, the mouse, or Claudio is he insisted on calling it, began to get more pushy in its requests and at one point threatened to “not give him help with his shaft” if he did not kill somebody soon. He did not elaborate on what “shaft help” entails, but I fear it is something so horrifyingly perverse that I dare not write it.

And so, with the full admission of the murderer and town morale being quite low after a brutal winter (and the murders), the town board unanimously decided to burn Mr. Popbottom at the stake. For good measure we burned the mouse at a small stake. It was rather amusing, actually. We used a small pile of twigs and some twine to tie the mouse up. But I digress.

The local paper has dubbed the past few weeks “The Winter of Wilbur.” It is rather catchy, don’t you agree?

I would tell you that I’m sorry for your loss but, let’s be honest, I’m not. I’m actually quite relieved that no one is killing the people in my town anymore.

Arthur Sleevington, Sheriff of Charleston

The Fox Trapper – Letter 8


Oh, amorous babe o’ mine, I am in love with this “artist’s lifestyle” which I am currently leading. The paper is asking me to deliver to them a cartoon thrice weekly, which means that in order to heed your advice and be drunk all the time (so that my art may excel into realms which it can not whilst sober), I have been on an overload of creation and ingestion.

I can not wait for you and Claudio (the mouse, not my brother) to come home to Windsor. Although, my dear, know that I am not the same Eliza as I was before you left. This Eliza is in high demand, and you must get accustomed to my frequent indulgences, alcoholic mood swings, lash-outs from a creative block in ideas, bottle smashes, and vomits. Of course, my love will still be there for you, albeit a bit hungover.

In order to get you used to our new lifestyle, I have included my schedule:

Sunday, Monday, Thursday – Drink from Dawn until Dusk in order to create a vivid Cartoon.
Tuesday – Drink in the morning. Attend The Meeting of Ladies for the Creation of a New World (going to Adeline’s place to indulge in alcohol and occasionally illicit drugs).
Saturday – Spend the day with Wilbur, the love of my life…while CORNED!
Wednesday – An entire day of rest and slumber whilst I recuperate.

As you can see, I have scheduled us for Saturdays. You always said those were your favorite days since the wildlife seemed more awake and easier to talk to. I have not forgotten you, my love.

In fact, if these cartoons allow us enough financial stability to wed, and live harmoniously together, I plan on having such a lavish estate with a beastly amount of acreage so that you may commune with the wildlife.

Also, our estate will have a “Drinking Room” which locks from the outside, so that my alcohol-induced states of extreme violence and swearing will not interfere with our love!

See, Wilbur, I have got it all figured out. Now I just need you to get your sweet rump back home to Windsor!

As for your letter, I am glad you left that worthless camp full of fox murderers and doctors who wouldn’t know how to diagnose Adult Onset St. Vitus Dance if a medical book on diagnostics was right in front of their pathetic noses! My fury for these men is at least triple the previously highest fury this world has ever seen! My rage makes wars seem like baths, and I wish I could slaughter them all and drain their blood into my morning cup of Scotch.

That being said, please be careful on your long and arduous journey back home. My lips will be well-wetted by whisky and awaiting the lovers lock that is your lips pressed against mine. Once you arrive, I do believe the whole world will hear how loud I will passionately shout your name. I had begun a practice of practicing this shouting; however, I was told by local law enforcement to cease under the penalty of being “hauled to the Looney Bin.” I held back my desire to murder those men who dare think they could tell me what to do all for you, my love. Making love to you, Wilbur, on top of a pile of the blood and corpses of our enemies is the thought that lately has been getting me through the day. First on the list to murder are these so-called officers of the law which I speak of. Next will be the doctors and men on your fox adventure. I do not have a third yet, but lately I am very easy to agitate and fantasize about murder, so I am sure it will not be long.

Be safe, Wilbie! I love you so much, and I anxiously await your reply.


P.S. I have included a copy of my latest cartoon published in the paper. Your love for animals inspired me!

The Fox Trapper – Letter 7

To my oft-inebriated love Eliza,

Claudio and I have made the decision – we’re escaping this horrid encampment. I can tell from miniature companions squeals and shakes that he is trying to tell me that something terrible is going to happen to me. I fear the men have grown tired of me and my “antics,” as the captain has called them. One evening about a week ago one of the men caught me yelling “BEWARE! BEWAAAAARE!!” off into the forest and they now believe I’ve gone mad. The camp medic has diagnosed me with an adult case of St Vitus Dance and they have quarantined me to my own personal tent. What fools, the only disease I have is my amorous feelings towards my furry friends. That and my recurring case of Crimpers Pelvis.

I must say, my dear, that I am extremely impressed by the enormous amount of progress you have made in your art. Dare I say it, maybe you should be inebriated ALL the time! The results are in plain sight, you perform much better under the influence. Alas, if only MY expedition had left for the wilderness to get Corned, I would not be in the sad state I am in now. Even being permitted to get corned would help ease the pain of being kept in this stuffy tent.

Claudio and I plan on leaving the encampment tonight under the cover of darkness. I shall send this letter and then prepare for the long journey through the woods. Eliza, it will be a long, arduous journey, and I am fearful of what evils await me on this trail. However, the thought of returning to your arms back home in Windsor is my last glimmer of hope. Embracing you with all my might while enjoying the scent of a large breakfast as well as a bit of licorice emanating from your golden locks. Pressing my lips against yours and becoming slightly inebriated from the whiskey on your breath. Seeing your brother over your shoulder giving me the subtlest of winks. This is what I travel for. THIS IS WHAT I LONG FOR!

If you wish to reply, I shall be headed towards Charleston, West Virginia and will check the post office upon my arrival. Please Eliza, pray for my whiskered ally and I.

Until I am wrapped in your arms once more,


The Fox Trapper – Letter 5

To my foreverfully astonishingly gorgeous Eliza,

There’s a hole in my heart that goes all the way to Savannah, Georgia. It was merely a pin-prick the early morning I bid you goodbye and left Windsor, but it has now grown to the size of Ol’ Mr. Sleepinberg’s cesspit. This void can be filled by one person and only one person, and that person is you, Eliza. All I would need to fill it is one smile from your mostly-still-intact set of teeth. I’m none too sure how long I can continue on this horrible venture, my body has grown weak from lack of proper nutrition and each day we travel further West in search of more foxes. I’m not sure how long I can stay up so late in order to save my furry friends, I fear very much for their safety.

My sole companion, Claudio, is the one thing here that keeps me sane. I’ve taught him another new trick! Whenever I poke him with what I like to call the “trick stick” and ask him “Who is the strongest, cleverest and handsomest beast in all the land?”, Claudio screams like a Harpy and bounces off the walls of his cage. What I believe he is saying is “ME! ME, YOU DAMNED VILE SCUM! I AM CLAUDIO, THE MIGHTIEST BEAST OF THEM ALL!!!” Mice are such fascinating creatures.

Eliza my dear, I’m sure what you meant to explain to your companions was that your brother Claudio was assisting me in my attempt to learn the sport of golfing. So yes, my hands were certainly on your brothers shaft, as were his own, as he pressed his thick muscular body against my back and demonstrated how to “put ones hips into it.” I’m sorry, but I do not understand people’s fascination with mine and your brother’s relationship. That is just how men who have great amounts of respect for each other act. Please explain this to your ladies so as to not have them think that Claudio and I have ever intentionally felt each others sweet caress.

My Crimpers Pelvis is still very much enflamed and the blood to urine ratio is beginning to lean more towards the blood side. I just do not trust any man here enough to have them tickle my feet for 16 minutes. I suppose I will just hope to urinate all the evil spirits out of my body, which requires a great deal of extra pushing, but I can tell there is significantly more blood leaving my body, so there is still hope.

Eliza, the thought of running away from camp has crossed my mind a number of times. If only I knew the wilderness better, I would leave now and be back in your arms within a matter of months. Alas, I am doomed to sit, wait, and complain until the time has come to return home. If only the captain allowed me to imbibe in our supply of alcohol like you do so frequently. I’m told it is for “men only,” but nowhere on the barrel do I see that label nor would it matter if that label did exist. Sometimes I just do not understand these men I must work with.

Rest assured though, my dear, that when I return I shall wed the hell out of you. I readily anticipate your reply, tell your brother that I long for his arms the width of tree trunks wrapped around me while he assists me in gripping the shaft correctly.

The golf club shaft.

With all of my unbridled love,

Your Wilbur

The Fox Trapper – Letter 3

To my loveliest Eliza,

I’d like to thank you dearly for your beautiful artwork, it has certainly brightened my mood. I tried to use it in order to gain some respect in the camp, but again I received nothing but a violent response. I displayed the picture to one of the younger gentlemen and declared, “Here! Now you see the great power and regalness of Mr. Wilbur Popbottom! I DEMAND RESPECT!” The following moments are all a blur to me now but I awoke with a number of lesions on my face and a difficulty urinating for the next couple of days. The boy may be only 13 years old, but I swear he is built like a ox-bear hybrid beast.

Eliza my dear, I am certainly not obsessed with your brother, Claudio. I certainly respect his hard-working nature, friendliness, great physical strength, firm handshake, shining smile, Sapphire blue eyes, and chiseled jaw line. However, there is a mutual respect there because Claudio truly appreciates my virtuosic harping abilities. My pet mouse merely reminds me a bit of your brother, with his unending curiosity and ability to melt my heart at one glance. Claudio (my mouse) has now learned a new trick in which he screams like a Harpy and bounces off the walls of his cage when he is hungry. I call it “The Banshee Shakes” and it is truly adorable.

Do not tell anyone of this, but I’ve taken to walking into the woods very late at night and searching for the foxes by myself. When I see one I warn it of the impending danger of the humans who are after their fluffy coats. They seem to take notice of my warnings because when I attempt to give them a “truce” handshake, they run away. I suppose they are too concerned with their lives to partake in the formalities, so I do not take offense.

Eliza, I know you are a smart woman so I am yet to be worried, but please heed my advice about indulging in spirits. You know what they say about alcohol: It’s been the cause of death for all of my grandparents, 2 of my sisters and a myriad of aunts and uncles. So, you know, be careful. It could even lead to you telling many an embarrassing story, such as the plum pudding one. You know I still have a limp from that incident.

I miss you Eliza, with all of my heart. Stay strong, for your man shall be home before you know it. Also, if you feel so inclined, tell Claudio to stay strong (which will be easy for him thanks to his bristling muscles), for his dear friend Wilbur will be home before he knows it.

With all my loving heart,


The Fox Trapper – Letter 1

My beloved Eliza,

I will be the first to admit that this expedition is far different from what I expected it to be. Who would have known from the advertisements that a “fox trapping” expedition meant that after we trapped said foxes, we murdered them and peeled off their skin!? As a strict vegetarian and all-around lover of animals, my stomach again begins to boil merely thinking about it. I assumed (apparently very naively) that we would be capturing these foxes for pets or even as trained entertainment for royalty.

The winter is coming soon and I fear it shall be harsh. Alas, with my poor financial situation and unending desire to wed you, I must push on. This, despite my vomiting every time I view one of the fox carcasses. Making matters worse is the copious amount of jesting the other men have on my behalf. Just yesterday the captain explained that my mother must have mated with a bovine to have made a man who eats nothing but grass and berries (I’d eat a bit more than that if they packed anything besides salted meats). Before I could explain that my father was, in fact, a moderately successful shoe maker the captain delivered a swift jab to my cheek, dislodging three teeth. This trip to the Western frontier has turned into a very difficult situation for myself. I certainly long to be back in Windsor, Connecticut with you.

Oh Eliza, my love, how I long for your touch. Your hair that smells of eggs, your skin as white as said eggs and your eyes as blue as your cheeks that time you choked on a piece of bread. Eliza, my dear, you are like a towering oak tree in the forest and I am a squirrel, hollowing out your insides in order to make room for my nuts and eventually my family.

Should I survive this winter (as well as survive my cohorts) I will return home and wed you like no man has wed a woman before. Then we shall start a family and I will finally pursue my dream of being a harpist in the Scotish Symphony Orchestra. There, we shall be happy.

Foreverfully yours, my love,


P.S. – I found a mouse and he is now my pet. His name is Claudio. He says hello, as well.