Month One (Twenty Months Before The End) to Month Eight
Deep within a flat, forested floodplain in a land that will become known as Montana, there was a raised mound. However, it was more than just some random lump rising up from the ground. It was a nest, belonging to the region's largest and most infamous predator--Tyrannosaurus rex. Within the nest were three eggs, the only survivors from an original group of twelve. Three of them had been cannibalized by other Tyrannosaurus, and the other six had been raided by a pack of Dakotaraptor. A crack appeared in one of the remaining eggs, as a tiny snout pushed its way through the shell. This was a female who we will refer to as Trix. Suddenly, the tiny theropod saw a set of massive jaws bearing twelve-inch teeth approach her. To her surprise, they didn't close around her--they simply stayed in place. She clambered into the mouth of the adult Tyrannosaurus--her mother, Tyroca.
Tyroca moved back, lowering her head enough for Trix to touch the ground. Another Rex walked towards Trix--the father, Orion. Trix's color scheme was a clash of browns, greys, and blacks, and her downy coat of feathers, which covered much of her scales, also was these colors. She looked back towards the mound as a snout emerged from another egg. This was another female, named Sue--and she had a special destiny. She was beige in color with some darker patches, and, like her older sister, she also possessed a coat of feathers, which she will lose as she ages. As she broke out of the eggshell, Tyroca's massive jaws lowered, allowing her to climb into her mouth before being gently set down on the dirt ground.
Finally, the last egg, holding a male Tyrannosaurus, hatched. He was named Stan, and he was primarily black with yellow-orange accents on his face. Stan was also feathered, and his snout protuded from the shell, before his leg kicked through. From here, he was able to free himself as Tyroca carried him within her massive jaws to gently place him on the ground. The three hatchlings looked at each-other and their parents as two more adult T.rex arrived, one of them carrying a dead Ornithomimus within his jaws. The Rex dropped the carcas
With all of the babies having hatched, it was time to introduce them to the rest of their pack. All of them knew Tyroca, for she was the first animal with which they had ever interacted. She was thirty-eight feet long and eleven feet tall, weighing in at nine tons. The mother was a dull beige-brown in color, and, unlike her offspring, she had already lost all her feathers. The father, Orion, was black with white head markings, and he was forty-one feet long and twelve feet tall. He weighed eight tons. Orion lowered his head and released a low rumble to communicate to the chicks, who chirped in response.
The other two pack-members were massive in comparison to Tyroca and Orion. Earthquake was forty-six feet long and sixteen feet tall. She was brown and white in color, and she weighed ten tons. Finally, the alpha, Thunderstorm, was fifty-one feet long and eighteen feet tall. He weighed in at twelve tons and he was jet-black with an electric-blue stripe running down his body. The two leaders of the pack greeted the hatchlings with a series of chirps and trills. Instinctively, Sue, Trix, and Stan knew that these four were their family. The adults had successfully hatched their remaining eggs while the other nine had been eaten by other predators. Now came the challenge of raising their offspring so that they may pass on their genes to the next generation.
As the chicks grew rapidly from their hatchling sixe of three inches, they were protected by one of the adults while the other three hunted for food. When a kill was made, the adult protecting them would lead them over to the kill, and they would all eat together. Triceratops prorsus and Edmontosaurus annectens were the largest and most abundant herbivores in Hell Creek, and these prey items were consumed the most often. The scents of Trikes and Edmontosaurs were smells that stuck with the babies for life.
Even at a young age, Sue, Trix, and Stan practiced fighting in their free time. They would play-fight, using their jaws and, due to their smaller size and speed, their legs to fight. At this age, they were even in terms of combat capabilities. However, none of them were able to injure or kill each-other, but they did gain some fighting experience at a young age. They did this under the supervision of the adults, who also scared off any predators that would try to eat them. Because of their massive food intake, they grew at an exponentially fast rate. They sharpened their combat skills, but they were still very small. However, they would need the skills they learned for the rest of their lives.
Hell Creek is an exceptionally dangerous place. Almost everywhere you go, you can see herds of Triceratops browsing on the vegetation. They were the most abundant dinosaur in the area by a significant margin. They were an exceptionally powerful prey animal, and only one predator, the most common carnivore in this area, could even hope to take one down: Tyrannosaurus rex. Hell Creek had the largest T.rex population in the world, with vastly more Tyrannosaurus than the Golden-Land to the far north. The Rex there were larger than the Hell Creek variant, which consisted of mostly average-sized individuals.
Thunderstorm and Tyroca were of the Golden-Land variant, quickly carving out a territory in Hell Creek. Earthquake was large for a Hell Creek Rex, who usually weren't much longer than forty feet. Her brother, Orion was closer to the average size. Sue, Trix, and Stan had inherited the best genes from both variants of T.rex. They were here instead of Dhahabi'ard because the Golden-Land's ecosystem had been ravaged by the Tyrant King's brother, who was killed by the strongest animal that ever lived. Still, the predators would need to wait before they could hunt the herds of Triceratops, Alamosaurus, and Edmontosaurus there.
One day, when the adults were resting, the Rex chicks saw an Acheroraptor that was about the same size as them. The Dromaeosaur ran, but the long-legged Tyrannosaurs easily caught up. Stan clamped down on its tail as Sue finished it off with a neck bite. When Thunderstorm and his pack woke up, they saw the juveniles feeding on the Raptor. At least they wouldn't have to make another kill, for their hunger had been satiated.
For the next seven months, the battle of survival continued, with the Rex family pulling through. They continued their daily routine, unchallenged by other predators. Occasionally, Orion and Tyroca would bring back live prey, usually juvenile Pachycephalosaurus or Leptoceratops, for their offspring to fight. The adults cornered the herbivore as they were nipped by the chicks. L.gracilis in particular would help them get used to fighting Triceratops, their species' biggest rival. The live prey their parents brought back got bigger and bigger as they grew. At the end of their eighth month, Sue was sixteen feet long, Trix was seventeen, and Stan was thirteen.
Thunderstorm, Earthquake, Tyroca, and Orion walked off in search of food. The juveniles stayed behind to practice their hunting and fighting skills. As they snapped and kicked at each-other, three other theropods were watching them from the shadows of the massive, towering trees overhead. These were Dakotaraptor steini; a rare and elusive yet deadly Dromaeosaurid, the only thing that could rival juvenile T.rex. The leader of the trio, an alpha-female with black and white feathers and red and blue plumes on her tail, tapped her massive sickle-claws on the ground as she stalked the Rex. This was the same group who raided the nest and killed six of Sue's unborn siblings.
She let out a low hiss as she jumped out of the bushes, revealing herself as her two subordinates followed. Sue was intimidated by the Raptors, especially the alpha, who was defined by her noticably large and sharp claws. Stan trilled to Trix, who boldly stood her ground. The Tyrannosaurs and Dromaeosaurs circled each-other, snapping their jaws and growling. The alpha Raptor lunged towards Stan, who sprang back in fear, chirping. Trix bit down on her neck, but her bite-force wasn't yet the devastating weapon it would be in her adult years.
The alpha easily slipped out of her jaws, a few drops of blood staining her feathered neck. The youngest of the three Raptors attacked Trix, who rammed her head with her skull and bellowed before clamping down on her neck and stomping on the Raptor's skull, killing it. The alpha was only enraged, determined not to lose this chance of an easy meal. She tackled Sue to the ground, pinning her down with her foot. She raised an arm and slashed at the Rex's neck, giving her three nasty gashes that would stay with her for life. The scars resembled those of a female Tyrannosaurus cloned by InGen millions of years later.
However, before she could finish off Sue, a deafening bellow filled her ears. The alpha Dakotaraptor watched as four adult Tyrannosaurus entered the area, two of them dragging a dead hadrosaur. Tyroca, urged on by her maternal instincts, snarled and growled at them. The two remaining Raptors looked at each-other and fled as Tyroca and Orion looked at their young. They didn't have any serious injuries, and Sue's neck slashes would heal. The seven T.rex fed on the Edmontosaurus as Avisaurus and Quetzalcoatlus flew overhead.
"Part of the journey is the end..."
Not bad, Tyrannos. I look forward to the rest of this series.
Godzilla... Truly a God incarnate.
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