“Triassic Park” by Joel Mason Griffin: 1st Place

Read the story that won 1st Place in the Children’s Category for our Fractured Films Writing Contest–a Triassic take on the movie “Jurassic Park” written by Joel Mason Griffin! The judges loved the action and suspense, and I think you will, too!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Let me introduce myself. I’m Jim, a scientist who researches the Triassic Period. In 2031, our scientists came up with a new invention called the time machine. They thought that with the time machine, they could send somebody back into time to retrieve old fossils of the Triassic period while they were still fresh. We picked straws to see who would travel back in time to retrieve the fossils. I was the lucky person to pick the right straw, but I soon found out I was the unlucky one.
When I arrived in the time period 66 million years in the past, inside a torch-lit cave, I wasn’t surprised to see cavepeople rushing to the scene of my landing. As soon as I landed, I communicated with hand signals that I wanted to talk to their leader. They all scratched their heads, as if confused. They quickly formed a semi-circle and began to grunt back and forth between each other.
“Grant,” grunted a cavewoman with tousled, black hair. “This alien is out of his mind!” Hold on a minute. These cavepeople were talking in English!
Thinking quickly, I interrupted their conversation saying, “Hello, my name is Jim. I am from the year 2031. Is there any way that I can speak to your leader?”
Just like that, I was walking into the leader’s cave, ready to strike any bargain to earn important prehistoric fossils.
As I was ushered into the room by guards with wooden clubs, I was surprised to note the beauty and contrast of the throne room compared to the rest of the caves. Unlike where I landed, this cave had crystals crafted into shapes. On top of that, the throne was made out of pure amber. Now that I think about it, this wasn’t the only amber I’d seen. There had been loads of amber in the caves that I had already passed.
“Hello,” said a gruff voice, startling me out of my thoughts. The man who had said this was obviously the leader, with combed blond hair and the stubbly remnants of a beard. He wore clothes dyed red, likely from the blood of animals. On his head was adorned a crown made out of bones studded with blue crystals. “It is I, the leader of the cavepeople, Kazmaar. What is it that you want from me?”
“Well, I have come here to strike a bargain,” I replied to Kazmaar. “If you send me out with your best diggers, to dig up prehistoric fossils, then I, in return, will do you a favor.”
“Well, it would be nice to have a prehistoric zoo…” Kazmaar thought aloud. “Deal?”
“Deal it is.”
After 2 weeks of hard work, I had retrieved all the fossils that I was looking for, plus some extras. Using a machine I had brought, plus DNA in the clumps of amber scattered across the caves, I recreated the extras into Triassic animals. The cavepeople and I put the animals into different sections of the caves. Each animal was in a cage with spears on all sides, including the top, all tied with a rope. So, if there was any trouble, the guards on duty could pull a rope that dropped all the spears into the cage. I thought that these inventions would be safe and secure. To be honest, I was wrong.
It was opening day. A cluster of cavepeople overfilled the cave. Everybody’s hearts, including mine, were tense with excitement. A fine-looking caveman stepped onto the stage, cleared his throat, and said, “My dear cavepeople, let me welcome you to… Triassic Park!”
The gathering of cavepeople cheered and charged through the wooden gates surrounding park. I stumbled to the side of this stampede, panting for breath. Soon, the crowd had disappeared from sight. That was when I began to stroll through the gates. Walking along the cave, I saw a sign stating that it was only a quarter of a mile to the first animal: Postosuchus. I picked up my pace to a jog. As I got closer to the Postosuchus, I could hear the oohs and aahs of the cavepeople. Then, when I finally came upon the Postosuchus, I could hear screaming and crying. Something was definitely wrong.
I dashed into the cave to see a cavewoman with her arm ripped off, blood everywhere. A cluster of people surrounded her, while the guards were counting to three.
“…Two!…Three!…Pull!” All at once, the guards pulled the rope as hard as they could. All of the spears surrounding the cage went flying into the cage. The spears on the side of the cage flopped harmlessly across the Postosuchus’s flank. The Postosuchus, being smart, had already hidden his head under his spine. Three spears imbedded themselves into the Postosuchus’s back, but they were only shallow injuries. The Postosuchus roared in pain and rolled over, trying to scrape the spears off his back. I knew that it was going to eventually succeed, and headbutt the cage open, so I set off at a sprint. I needed to get a good look at the other animals before the Postosuchus broke out, so that I could get a ride on one of them. I passed the other carnivorous cages at a sprint, passing the Archosaur, the Dimetrodon, and the Saltopus.
As I rounded the bend to the herbivore section, I heard the alarm go off. The alarm was only set off if an emergency happened. In the case of an alarm, all the guards pull their ropes that trigger the spears.
“NO! STOP!” I tried to yell into the herbivorous section. But it was too late.
I passed the cage of the Lystrosaurus, already knowing that it was dead. Come to think of it, the only herbivorous animals that survived the spears were probably the Placerias and Plateosaurus. Plateosaurus was too big to ride, but a Placerias was just the right size. So, all I could do was sprint on and hope that the next cage was the Placerias. It was.
As I ran into the cave where the Placerias was, I saw that the spears had already been sprung, and the Placerias was still alive. I karate-kicked one of the logs of wood into splinters, fed the Placerias a carrot to tame it, and led it out of its cage. Now I had a mount.
“Giddy up!” I said, gently tapping the Placerias’s skin. The Placerias began to gallop in the direction I guided it: deeper into the cave. It was the only chance of getting out of Triassic Park alive. I’d have to go out the back gate of Triassic Park, then loop back around to my time machine.
As I was galloping through the torch-lit tunnels, I noticed that the alarm horns had stopped playing. That meant that the Postosuchus had already escaped.
After what seemed like forever, I arrived at the back of Triassic Park. I searched for a gate that would lead out of Triassic Park, but there was none. Of course. Well, I would have to do this the hard way. I turned my Placerias around, and led it back into Triassic Park.
I could hear screams and the sound of dinosaurs roaring as I passed a sign that said: Carnivorous Section. My Placeria whimpered and stopped. I dug my hands into my pockets and produced another carrot.
I fed it to the Placerias saying, “It’s going to be okay buddy. It’s going to be okay.” That’s when the Postosuchus lunged. The Placerias squealed in fright as a claw imbedded itself into the Placerias. The other claw tore off my right arm. I could feel the blood dripping down my T-shirt and pants. Acting fast, I ripped off a piece of my T-shirt, and wrapped it around my stump of an arm as a bandage. Then, I stealthily moved through the shadows, hoping that the Postosuchus wouldn’t come after me.
The Postosuchus was busy eating the Placerias when I accidentally sneezed. The Postosuchus immediately turned its head, and I made a mad dash for my life down the tunnel.
The Postosuchus gave no chase, assuming Placerias was a better meal than me. I was relieved, but realized that I would have to make it past the Dimetrodon, Archosaur, and Saltopus. That’s when I felt cold breathing down my neck. The breathing was raspy, not human. A Saltopus.
I ran for my life down the cave, rounded a bend, and came right upon the Archosaur. It roared with its full might, and made a chomp at the Saltopus. Then, a Dimetrodon came from behind and bit the tail of the Ichthyosaurus. It was an epic battle, which bought me time to escape.
I heaved open the heavy, wooden doors of Triassic Park, climbed into my time machine, and turned on the engine. As I was traveling back to 2031, I radioed in my report, “There has been a Triassic disaster. I repeat, there has been a Triassic disaster.”

THE END

AnnMarie Kolakowski

I'm a youth services librarian working in the Children's Room at the Pasadena Central Library. I purchase juvenile nonfiction books for all sites, juvenile Spanish books for all sites, and juvenile DVDs for the Central Library. I do a lot of programs with school-age kids, including Lucha Libros, writing workshops, and STEAM/science programs. I also do 16 weeks of Infant/Toddler Storytimes each year. I love what I do, working with kids of all ages to inspire them to learn and use their curiosity and imaginations. Outside of my work at the library, I am also the author of a book on creative writing activities for kids.

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