Chapter 1 ‘Yum Yum’ Page 3
They walked along for what seemed to Jason to be a pretty long time for just a closet. He was beginning to wonder if Tommy’s imagination wasn’t contagious and hoped it wasn’t fatal as well.
Tommy stopped as they neared the wall of plants. “Before we go any further,” he said. “You’d better cover your eyes. The light ahead is pretty bright.”
Jason sighed and closed his eyes. I guess this is part of what makes an imaginary world so exciting, he thought, we’re probably going to end up in the garage. Tommy took him by the arm and they continued on.
Jason felt something brush against him, then a warm breeze on his face.
“You can open your eyes now,” said Tommy. Jason did.
Bright light scorched his eyes and he quickly shut them. Jason slowly opened his eyes again and was surprised to see that they weren’t in the garage at all but in some kind of forest. Jason was completely baffled by what he saw. How was this possible? There just couldn’t be a forest inside Tommy’s closet, could there? He looked over at Tommy, who was wearing sunglasses.
“This...,” said Jason. “This is totally amazing! Where did it come from?”
Tommy shook his head. “I don’t know,” he said taking off the sunglasses. “But I saw this here earlier.” He pulled out his book and showed Jason. Jason read the blurb next to the picture of the Compsognathus. “What are you going to do now?” he asked.
Tommy grinned. “Explore! What’d you think! Just imagine the different kinds of dinosaurs there must be here! I’m going to be the first to see them all!” He rubbed his hands together eagerly.
Jason’s eyes widened. “Are you crazy!” he gasped. “Your book says the dinosaur you saw is carnivorous. I’m not gonna be lunch for any dinosaur. I still have to fix my bike!” Jason paced up and down the clearing waving his arms around and yelling. “We’re going home right now and when Dad gets home we’re going to tell him everything!”
Tommy shook his head. “Forget it,” he said. “I’m staying until I get a picture of a real live dinosaur.” He crossed his arms and stared defiantly at his older brother.
Jason continued to protest and Tommy would have listened if his attention weren’t diverted by something he saw out of the corner of his eye. Jason soon realized Tommy wasn’t listening to him and turned to see what he was finding so fascinating. Up in the sky a dark object was speeding towards them. Before they knew what was happening, a huge bird descended upon them. Unfolding its huge clawed feet, the bird made a grab for the boys. They tried to run but the great beast was much too fast. Tommy and Jason let out screams of terror as the giant prehistoric bird soared into the clear blue sky with them firmly in its grasp.
After several heart stopping moments Tommy stopped struggling and opened his eyes. The height they were at was dizzying! They must have been thousands of feet in the air. In the distance he could see a mountain range and below a huge green valley and a river that cut through the land. At one end of the valley was a waterfall and at the other end the river had punched a hole right through the valley wall and flowed off into the distance. Fighting the fierce wind Tommy raised his head and looked up at his huge captor. The bird’s body was covered with short brown fur and instead of feathers the wings were huge pieces of tightly stretched skin. Its wingspan was well over the length of a school bus. Tommy tried to remember what prehistoric creature this was, maybe a Quetzalcoatlus or the Pteranodon, but he wasn’t sure. He looked over at his brother. Jason’s eyes were tightly shut. Tommy called out to him but a great rush of air grabbed his words and whipped them away. There was no way Jason was going to hear him. The flying dinosaur unexpectedly changed its flight path, gliding down close to the ground. Without warning the bird relaxed its grip and let the boys go. Tommy and Jason fell screaming towards the ground below. They landed with an unexpected loud splash, plunging deep into the dark murky river water. After a few moments the water's surface ceased to ripple and once again flowed quietly along.
Jason broke through the rivers tranquil surface and looked around wildly for any sign of Tommy, but could find none. Panic gripped Jason’s entire body. Just as he was beginning to think his brother was lost forever, the water near him began to bubble, and Tommy’s head popped up. He was struggling for air and flailing around. Jason swam towards Tommy and grabbed him by the back of his shirt. Jason knew their only chance was to swim for the shore. He dare not think about the creatures that might be swimming around beneath them.
After what seemed like hours rather than minutes, the boys reached the shore and collapsed on the muddy bank.
“What was that thing?” wheezed Jason.
“I think it was...gasp... a Quetzalcoatlus or... gasp... a Pteranodon but I’m not sure.” said Tommy. He dragged himself up to his knees.
“What did it want with us?” asked Jason.
“It probably thought we were food and was taking us back to its nest to feed to its young.” said Tommy.
“What!” exclaimed Jason. It made him sick to think he’d almost become prehistoric bird food. “Why’d it drop us then?”
“I don’t know,” replied Tommy. “Maybe it was trying to crack us open... you know, to get at our guts,” he added.
Jason made a face and got to his knees. “What do we do now?” he moaned. “We’re miles away from your closet!”
Tommy surveyed their surroundings. “I think I know which way to go to get home,” he said pointing off to their left. “I saw a valley over that way. I’m pretty sure my closet is on the other side.”
“You mean you had you eyes open!” said Jason with horror.
“It wasn’t that bad,” said Tommy.
“Oh yeah,” grumbled Jason. “ A piece of cake!”
The boys got to their feet and began the long walk home.