Chapter 4: Big Old Joe strikes back


About an hour later, Jackie began to grow tired and the fish was still fighting. Slowly an old angler approached the boat. "Hey, son, why don\'t you just cut the line and let him go. He is not coming up today," the old man said. Jackie was not a quitter and he was not going to start now. He was determined not to let this fish win. "Thanks but no thanks, old man," Jackie replied. "I will bring this one in." He continued with his struggle against Big Old Joe.


The struggle continued for another forty-five minutes. Big Old Joe would let Jackie reel him in close enough to be seen, and then suddenly he would return to the bottom of Galloway Branch. The crowd had drifted closer and continued to cheer and Jackie continued to struggle. Again the old man advised, "Son, there is no shame in cutting the line. Big Old Joe will always be there, but he will never be caught. Cut the line before he takes the rod and reel from you." Jackie just looked at the old man as if he was crazy and continued to fight.


Again, Jackie was able to reel the line in some. This time the fish seemed to have lost all of its fight. The line came in quickly and much easier than before. Stephen yelled, "He is tired." When the rest of the anglers heard this, they became excited. Quickly Jackie reeled the fish in toward the outstretched fishing net. Closer and closer the fish came. They could clearly see the huge fins on the blue catfish. Jackie continued to bring the fish to the boat. Then suddenly the line retightened.


Big Old Joe did not run for the bottom but he would not come any closer. He just stopped. No one expect what happen next to happen. Some people that have heard the story retold have replied that it could never happen. However, those that were there that day reported that suddenly Big Old Joe leaped high into the air. The gigantic blue catfish soared four feet out of the water and then back straight down to the very bottom of Galloway Branch. Because of the tension on the line and the unexpected descent of the fish, Jackie without warning fell harshly into the murky waters. "Jackie!" Stephen screamed as he witnessed his brother helpless frame fly into the water.


Suddenly, a very loud splash was heard. For a few seconds, the murky water of Galloway Branch enveloped Jackie. Suddenly and quickly, he resurfaced to the top of the water and swam to the boat. After climbing out of the water, Jackie exclaimed, "Did you see that? He came out of the water and took my rod and reel. I can not believe it." As the old man turned to start his boat and leave, he replied, "Son, I told you that he did not want to come in. You should have cut the line and you would still have your rod and reel."


Leave a reply

© 2022 WebTribes Inc. | find your tribe

Log in with your credentials


Forgot your details?

Create Account