‘Strange Trees and Bushes That Sneeze’
Tommy woke. He didn’t know how long he had slept for or even if it was morning. Quietly, as not to wake the others, Tommy crawled across the dim cave to where one of the crystals was still on. He leaned back against the rugged rock wall and looked around. He could just make out the outlines of the sleeping dinosaurs. Even with the incredible excitement of finding live dinosaurs, Tommy was saddened. All he really wanted was maybe a picture of the little dinosaur he had seen near his closet and never dreamed of anything like this; dinosaurs that could talk and had magical powers. This really wasn’t how history was suppose to be, was it? Could scientists have been this wrong? Tommy thought about his room back home. He missed it very much and wished he was there right now playing with his plastic dinosaurs instead of here with real ones. Tommy took off his backpack. He had decided to always leave it on just in case any fast vacating of the premises was needed. He pulled out his Dinosaur Encyclopedia, opened it and quietly flipped through the pages. His new dinosaur friends were nice, but Tommy still wished that they would have just remained pictures.
Tommy quickly put the book away as some of the dinosaurs began to stir from their sleep.
“Good morning,” said Tommy quietly as Bonta and Kypou joined him.
“Good morning,” they replied.
“You’re up very early,” said Bonta. “Did you not sleep well?”
“No, no, I slept great,” said Tommy. “Very comfortable,” he added.
“Good,” replied Bonta.
Meanwhile, Typhoo woke up and Kypou tapped the lights on. The noise and lights, however, did nothing to stir Jason or Peko. They were both still fast asleep.
“It’s mine and Harpi’s turn to collect breakfast,” said Kypou. “But since he has not returned Typhoo and I will go. We will be back soon.” The two dinosaurs left.
“Harpi still isn’t back?” said Tommy to Bonta.
She shook her head. Harpi had never stayed away this long before and Bonta was worried.
Tommy didn’t want to seem ungrateful but he was starting to wonder exactly what dinosaurs considered as breakfast, and came to the conclusion that it probably wasn’t cereal. Visions of a bowl filled with little furry squeaking mice entered his head. Perhaps, he thought, I’ll skip breakfast.
It didn’t take long for Kypou and Typhoo to return and by this time Jason and Peko had managed to drag themselves out of bed. To Tommy’s great relief breakfast consisted of an assortment of berries. Kypou and Typhoo had also brought something else back... Harpi. The dinosaur glared at Tommy and Jason then flopped down on his bed. Harpi didn’t seem very thrilled to be home.
“Where did you find him?” Bonta asked Kypou quietly.
“On our way back from gathering food,” replied Kypou. “I think he’s still upset.”
Enjoying breakfast for Tommy and Jason turned out to be difficult with Harpi’s reptilian eyes boring into the back of their heads. Bonta did her best to soothe their discomfort.
“How is your leg Jason? Has it given you any trouble?” she asked.
“No,” said Jason shaking his head. “It feels good.” Bonta smiled with pleasure. “So,” said Jason trying to ignore Harpi’s burning stare. “How did you know we were in the trap yesterday?”
“We didn’t,” said Kypou. “You see, we try to check the traps at least once a day hopefully before the Myrites do. So it was lucky for you we came along when we did otherwise... Our goal is you see, to free anyone we find in the traps. We may not be able to save those already enslaved but we can stop the Myrites from capturing any more of us. I had no idea we would find you two.”
“Have you found any more of your um...Gwondalians?” asked Jason.
“No,” said Kypou. “The traps have been empty for quite some time now. Which means either the others are getting better at avoiding them or...” and this was a thought Kypou didn’t like to think about. “Or there is no one left. We are the last of our kind.”
Meanwhile, Bonta tried to get Harpi to eat some breakfast, but he wasn’t interested. He was still sore with Kypou for disregarding his feelings about the strangers.
Jason finished the last of his food. He had slept well last night and now he wanted to go home.
“Tommy and I can’t thank you guys enough for your help but we really need to get home. Our family is probably worried about us. Can you tell us how to get out of the valley?”
“It’s not safe for you to be in the jungle by yourselves,” said Bonta. “Is it Kypou?”
Kypou nodded. “Yes, it’s much too dangerous. If you come with us, we will do your best to get you to the other side of the valley.”
He looked over at Harpi, who was still on his bed.
“Come along Harpi. They will need all of our help,” he said.
Reluctantly and grumbling under his breath, Harpi followed them up the stairs and into the jungle.