[This paragraph has been transcribed from a handwritten letter sent to the Flylords’ office from an unknown location]

“To whoever receives this letter.

We all grew up hearing fish tales. Stories that boasted unbelievable catches, missed strikes and lousy net jobs.  These tales gave rise to the term “Pics or it didn’t happen”. I’ve been one to exaggerate a few inches on my trout,  but nothing substantial enough to discredit by name. I was browsing Instagram one day when I noticed the “Blue Bow” A trout with these hyper blue, almost fake colors.

It was posted by the Instagram account Trout Row, and it seemed credible due to his large following. It was until I read the comments, and convinced me it was a fraud. A lousy photoshop job to trick the masses, but something Inside me wanted to believe it was true. I tried to contact Mr. Trout Row because I kept telling myself, maybe this wasn’t fake, maybe there was a real “Blue Bow” I sent him a message saying I would like to speak more on this matter, and he said we could chat. He gave me a cellphone number to contact, with an area code I could not locate on a search engine. I wondered why he couldn’t just message me what I needed to know, but it all became apparent in the near future. He answered the phone with a tone of paranoia, almost as if he had been waiting to get something off his chest like he had committed a crime. He went to explain how the Blue Bow was real, and not just a ruse to gain followers. Obviously, at this point, I was stunned, but there were too many facts and comments that seemed to prove it was fake. I passive-aggressively asked him about the Snopes article, because I recently found he admitted the hoax there. He told me he was paid off by the government to tell people it was fake because it was an accidental release of an experimental breed of fish. He quickly said he had to leave after this, and before I could ask why I was met by the depressing sound of a dial tone.

I was left with more questions than answers, at first I was excited to hear this news, but I wanted to know more about this fish. I started to do research online, Until I came across the Federal Fisheries Department, or the FFD. I found the contact information of the lead genetics scientist there, Dr. Ethan Hall, and I gave him a call. I started shooting questions off to him one after another, probably too many for his liking. He explained he could not give me specifics of any genetic work they did, because of security issues. He mentioned something about the “Fish Race”, A program with competing countries to see who could engineer the most temperature range tolerant and colorfully vivid fish, which I thought was a complete joke. I laughed and hung up, but soon after, my wonder overpowered my sense of humor. Could this be like the space race between the Soviet Union and the United States, where two superpowers battled for space travel superiority? There was no way. It wasn’t until I dug further that I realized it wasn’t so crazy at all. I turned to a Russian search engine on the dark web and used a translating app to search Blue Bow in the Russian language. My heart almost stopped when I was presented with multiple pictures of these blue fish.

Exhibit A
Exhibit B

I was euphoric, and I barely made it halfway down the web page when I felt a blunt object strike the back of my head. I woke up in a daze, barely able to recognize what was going on. There was a loud droning noise, and my ears were picking up a language I could not comprehend. I was blindfolded, and as soon as I sat up, the voices stopped. I yelled out frantically, only to hear the voices growing louder, and with a sense of anger. I was met once again with the familiar strike of a blunt object, And the next time I woke up, I was alone in the silence. This time I wasn’t blindfolded. I was in a large room, with posters littered in foreign languages scattered across the room. I recognized the characters though, they looked almost identical to the Russian typography I witness on the dark web. I came to my senses and realized maybe Dr. Hall wasn’t just trying to bust my chops, Maybe this fish race was real, and maybe I bit off more than I could chew. I have a lot more to say, but the pen I found hidden in this room is running out of ink. I am going to try to smuggle this out somehow. If anybody ever received this letter, please send help, and please bring the Blue Bow to light.

Yours Truly,

Joe Czarfunee”

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