Month Sixteen, Four Months Before The End
Within Bone Butte, everything was seemingly peaceful. Triceratops and Edmontosaurus browsed on the vegetation. One Trike in particular shook his head. He had a red frill with a black edge and yellow marks. The ceratopsid’s back was black with yellow, blue, and green stripes, and his underbelly was gray. His powerful beak stripped plants of vegetation. This old bull was a magnificent specimen, measuring thirty feet long and ten feet tall, and weighing twelve tons. He then rejoined the rest of his herd.
It was mating season for Triceratops prorsus, and competition between males was fierce. They often flushed blood into their head crests, and the one with the brightest display would win the right to mate. However, sometimes, this was not enough, and two males would joust, locking horns until one backed down. Our bull Trike bellowed as he faced a youthful male of his same species. This bull had won every battle he had ever fought for mates, but now he was past his prime.
The two snorted and bellowed, shaking their massive heads, but neither was willing to back down. As this happened, within the dense vegetation of a nearby forest, a predator was watching, observing, waiting for an opportunity. Her piercing yellow eyes allowed her to perceive the distance between herself and the Trikes, and her small arms were tucked in next to her body. She was deeply invested in this fight, her forty-one foot body hidden within the wooded forest.
The two Trikes stepped towards each-other before locking horns. A similar behavior can sometimes be observed in dueling Tyrannosaurus, where they lock their jaws, craning their powerful neck muscles in an attempt to gain an advantage. The younger male, the buck, was desperately trying to push his opponent back. However, the bull, despite his age, had a considerable size advantage against the Trike and began to turn the tide, knocking him back. The buck was smashed into a nearby tree as both he and the bull reared up on their hind legs. The bull made one final move, swinging his skull. He was at a higher point than his opponent, his brow horns slashing the buck’s frill. They returned to their normal quadrupedal stances, but the bull rammed into the buck from the side, his horns locking around his frill. He shook his head, the tips slashing into the bone.
The younger Trike screamed in pain as he shook his head. Blood dripped down his frill, some of it trickling onto his neck. The predator continued watching from the shadows, her eyes following the buck. The bull returned to the rest of the herd, approaching a female to mate. The buck went over to a clearing in the forest and layed down to rest and slowly heal. He was near a shallow stream and looked at his bloody reflection in it. His magnificent frill, a bright blue with yellow accents, was covered in blood. The predator continued creeping through the underbrush, moving to a location where she would be behind the armored front of the Trike.
She made her move, her jaws stretching open as her powerful legs propelled her forward. The Trike failed to turn around in time as a pair of five-foot jaws clamped down on his frill. Twelve-inch teeth dug into the calcium-rich bone as he shrieked and struggled, while his attacker tightened her grip. The Triceratops finally wrenched himself free, his frill even bloodier than before. He turned around to face his attacker, a female Tyrannosaurus rex. She was a dark blackish-brown in color, standing twelve feet and six inches tall, and measuring forty-one feet long. The two circled each-other, their tails swaying from side to side.
The buck rammed into her, but his horns weren’t at the right angle to impale her. She stepped back, shaking her head before biting down on his right brow horn, holding it in an iron grip. The Trike swung his head back and forth, but this was a mistake, as a loud SNAP! emanated through the area. His brow horn had been broken off, and the Rex had an advantage. She made a fake lunge, stepping to her left to grab his frill where she had originally attacked him. The Rex’s toe claws scraped against his back leg as she positioned herself so that she was facing the same direction as him.
She yanked her head back, as a sickening crunch filled the air. Blood gushed everywhere as the Triceratops felt a painful sensation on his frill. Then, the realization filled him: a considerable piece of it had been bitten off! He had no time to process or react to this, as a pair of jaws full of railroad spikes clamped down on his neck. He was too weak to fight back, helpless as a powerful kick sent him to the ground. The Trike was too weak to stand as the Rex’s foot pressed against his side. The apex predator leaned her body down, biting down on the exposed throat of the ceratopsid. He began to cry out in pain, but his screams never finished, for they were finished in silence by a ripping of the throat from the Rex’s jaws.
The Rex, to us, is familiar, yet different. This was Trix, but through killing the Trike, something had changed about her. Gone was the playful, wide-eyed, long-legged juvenile; she truly had become a Tyrannosaurus rex, worthy of her species’ name in every way. She threw her head back, bellowing loudly. Five minutes later, her pack, led by Thunderstorm, arrived. The female Rex had fought her way to adulthood by fighting her kind’s biggest rival. Her mother, Tyroca, nuzzled her in joy. She lowly cooed to her, expressing her pride for Trix. All seven Rex began to tear the corpse apart, swallowing massive chunks of meat and flesh with tosses of their heads.
From this day forward, Trix was an adult. She would be able to fend for herself if she would ever become separated from her family. Her feathers were all gone, fully revealing her powerful, muscular body in all its glory. Her color scheme remained dull to keep her camouflaged while hunting prey. She had came of age; soon, her siblings, Sue and Stan, would have to do the same.
"Part of the journey is the end..."
Pretty good. My favorite part was the Triceratops jousting scene.
Godzilla... Truly a God incarnate.
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