|“||I can't wait anymore! Ari — you're the next ghost for Camp Full Moon!||„|
|~ The Snatcher|
The Snatcher is the main antagonist of the Goosebumps Series 2000 book Return to Ghost Camp. It is an evil and mysterious creature that haunts the woods around Camp Full Moon.
Something of an urban legend, the Snatcher was said to steal and kill one camper from Camp Full Moon each year, leaving their spirits to remain in the camp, unable to pass on. According to legend, when the camp was first built, the Snatcher murdered a camper named Johnny Grant when he strayed too far away from the campfire. The Snatcher was said to be able to take whichever form it pleased, preferring that of a fox.
The spirits of the Snatcher's victims, unable to pass on, were forced to haunt the camp. The only way the ghost children could be set free was if a living camper could cross a certain river and reach the shore on the other side. Thus, each year, the ghosts would select a camper to be their saviour. However, the river was infested with ghoulish monsters, which made swimming across impossible.
When new campers Dustin Minium and Ari Davis secretly switched places upon arriving at Camp Full Moon, Dustin, though to be Ari by everyone else, was selected by the ghost children to be their saviour, and by extension, the Snatcher's victim. When Dustin learned of this, he desperately attempted to switch back with Ari, but Ari (having presumably learned of his fate as the Snatcher's victim) refused. When a panicked Dustin fled into the woods, he ran into a girl who referred to herself as Laura Carter. Laura claimed to be from a nearby girls camp and that she was trying to find a way to escape, and the two agreed to help each other flee the camp. Unbeknownst to Dustin, however, Laura was actually the Snatcher in disguise.
When Dustin met Laura the following night, the disguised Snatcher attempted to lure Dustin into the infested river to be killed. However, one of the ghost children, Noah, arrived and managed to expose Laura as the Snatcher. With its plans foiled, the Snatcher morphed into a fox and attempted to kill Dustin, but Dustin, with assistance from Noah, managed to successfully cross the river using a branch. The Snatcher made one final attempt to attack Dustin, but failed and instead plummeted into the river, where it was torn apart by the monsters.
With the Snatcher's destruction and Dustin having successfully crossed the river, the ghost children were finally free to pass on to the afterlife.
Little is known of the Snatcher's personality due to it being a creature shrouded in mystery. It is malicious and cruel by nature, killing for no established reason. It is also very deceitful and adept at manipulation, being able to gain the trust of its victims, usually by taking human form, before leading them to their doom. This was showcased when it easily tricked Dustin while under the guise of Laura; had it not been for Noah, the Snatcher would have succeeded in killing Dustin. In spite of its intelligence, the Snatcher was also quick to anger and becoming impatient if its plans were in danger of being unraveled. The Snatcher was also capable of extreme violence and ruthlessness, shown when it nearly mauled Dustin when he learned of the Snatcher's true intents.
Powers and Abilities
The Snatcher is a shape-shifter, able to transform in order to serve its needs. Throughout the book, it primarily takes the form of a fox and a human girl, though it is likely it can take other forms as well. This makes the Snatcher a dangerous opponent, as it can trick its victims by taking an unsuspecting form. The Snatcher is also a vicious killer, and is deadly enough to injure or kill a young child, as it has been doing for many years. Despite this, the Snatcher is not invincible, as Dustin was able to throw it off of him during their brief scuffle, and shortly afterwards, it was killed by the monsters in the lake.