As the large creature pounds its way toward us, smaller creatures begin to raise a fuss—running, flying, slithering themselves out of its path by means of whatever locomotion is available to them. Only we stand rooted to the spot, as if frozen in fascinated horror, staring at this oncoming dinosaur. My only coherent thought is that I’m grateful that it’s not the tyrannosaurus rex again. Perhaps I am counting my chickens prematurely, however. Maybe this type of lizard is as bad, if not worse than, the other one.
What happens next appears surreal in hindsight. Mein Gott, is that really Myron? What is the dummkopf doing?
Myron brushes by Vittorio and myself. But he’s not, as I imagined, running away from the situation, rather he’s moving toward it. He takes up a position between us and the charging creature, one hand raised in the universal gesture for halt. I do think the dinosaur understands sign language.
“Don’t worry!” he cries to us. “This dinosaur is a stegosaurus. She’s not a meat eater. Those must be her babies.”
That is rather impeccable logic, I must admit, but I still don’t want to be in her path. Being trodden is probably little better than being eaten.
And then I notice something in Myron’s hand. What the deuce? He’s slipped his wand away from Vittorio somehow, and now he’s aiming it at the charging mother, from who can be heard what I assume are her words for ‘Get away from my children!’
Vittorio and I move synchronously, leaping toward Myron. From the corner of my eye, I can see Charlie doing the same, Mary on his shoulders. I have no idea what Myron thinks he’s going to do… and I’m not sure that I want to know. “Nooooooo,” we cry out simultaneously, just as a ball of shimmering light emerges from the end of Myron’s piece of wood. It hovers for just a moment, before enveloping the dinosaur, which at this point is mere feet away from us and closing fast…
And suddenly she has stopped moving, frozen in mid-stride. In fact, every living creature within that strange diaphanous ball has ceased to move. Our jaws have just simultaneously hit the ground.
“That is… amazing,” Vittorio whispers, taking my hand in his, squeezing it reassuringly. Although I hate to admit it, I must agree with my lover. But my concern is this—Myron seems to specialize in magic that does not last and cannot be controlled, so maybe we should… leave immediately?
Charlie envelops Myron in a huge hug, and Mary lays thick monkey kisses on his cheek. Myron casts his eyes toward the ground, then turns to face us, uncertainly, as if he’s afraid we’re about to yell at him. Maybe we should, but I let the moment pass, albeit grudgingly.
Mary scrambles down from Myron’s shoulder and scoots along the ground until she reaches the nest of baby dinosaurs. Tenderly, she lifts one of them then glances at us. Vittorio and I get the idea and we each gingerly pick up one of the tiny babies, so different from their huge mother. They are small and cute and make little mewling noises. It takes two hands to hold one of them, though. Good thing they have no teeth yet.
Following Mary’s lead, we carry the children to where their mother has been arrested in mid-flight, and set them where she will see them, but not step on them. Now it is time to get ourselves away from here, as quickly as possible.
“Charlie, which way?” Vittorio asks. “We must leave here, quickly.”
Charlie wastes no time. He points past the dinosaur. “That way. There’s some hills not too far from here. She won’t follow us.”
I hope he’s right.
Vittorio and I climb onto the penny farthing. Although it was not designed for two, we’ve managed to ride together before, an ability that stands us in good stead now, as we (or rather, Vittorio) pedals furiously—this is one time when I am grateful for my diminutive stature as I perch on his shoulders—while Myron and Charlie and Mary all run as fast as they can ahead of us.
We do not stop running until we are a good distance away. I was concerned about the spell that Myron used. What if it never wears off? What happens to the mother and children then? But we hear an indignant trumpet coming from behind us and I am relieved that all is well once more.
We have stopped at the top of a large hill, beneath the shade of the single tree that graces it, breathing heavily, and letting our hearts beat at a more regular pace. Vittorio has his arms about me, and Charlie and Myron are hugging, while Mary sits contentedly at their feet.
Vittorio nudges me, looks toward Myron. I know what he’s saying, without his having to speak aloud—that is how closely we are attuned. I know, and yet I am concerned. With good reason, I think.
“Myron…” I begin. He glances up at me in some surprise mixed with a bit of trepidation. “Myron… you did good,” I grudgingly admit. I’m rewarded with a hug from Vittorio, and Myron manages a shaky smile. I think maybe he was more unsure of the outcome of his actions than he let on to us. But it was a good outcome, and that’s the main thing.
“How… I mean, how did you do that?” I fumble for the correct words, but this is what comes out. I’m still amazed that his spell didn’t backfire and cause great harm to us. Amazed and grateful.
“I don’t know,” he admits in a small voice. “Something inside of me. Something just felt right.”
“That was a very good thing you did,” Vittorio adds. “Very quick thinking. It is good you knew about that dinosaur being harmless. Thank you.”
Myron blushes, and cuddles against Charlie, who kisses his head softly.
to be continued
Now visit the other Briefers!
Lily Sawyer m/m
MA Church m/m
Michael Mandrake m/m
MC Houle m/m
Until next time, take care!