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Dinosaur man

by Jenny

He was there every day at the same time in exactly the same spot - had been for years. Thomas called him the dinosaur man.

In five-year-old logic this made perfect sense. Ever since he learned to talk Thomas had called trains dinosaurs - something about the roaring, the aggression, the clamorous speed of them had drawn parallels in his toddler’s brain and the association had stuck.

And this guy was here for the dinosaurs, no doubt about it.

Anyway, I remember the first day Thomas saw him. It was his first day at school and we were walking together over the railway bridge. He was there as always in his green plastic windcheater with his thermos and notepad, staring avidly over the bridge. You just think of these people as weirdo don’t you, without ever really wondering why, don’t you? So I steered Thomas away from him without even thinking about it.

But Thomas was fascinated.

“Mummy, what’s he doing?”

“He’s looking at the trains. Some people like to see all the different kinds of trains there are.”

“Do you think he knows they’re dinosaurs?”

But before I could answer, Thomas was off, tugging at his sleeve. The Dinosaur man looked surprised, but not displeased. I saw him smile at something Thomas was saying. He was probably harmless enough, but you can’t be too careful these days, so I stayed close.

Other parents hurried past, shifting their kids away from him and shooting us judgemental glances. Miserable sods, I remember thinking. Maybe because of that I went over to join them. Thomas was chatting away and for the first time ever the dinosaur man was smiling.

From that day we always left for school a few minutes early, so that Thomas could say hello to the dinosaur man. The dinosaur man had even showed Thomas his notepad and the long list of numbers. He was having a tough time settling into school and making friends. The encounters were what made Thomas eager to leave the house and go to school.

One Friday morning, Thomas carefully pocketed his notebook (he had his own now) and we set off in the drizzle. Dinosaur man waved and Picked Thomas up so he could see over the side of the bridge as a train whizzed by when three teenage lads sauntered past with their hands in their underwear and stinking of weed.

One of them had a fresh tattoo of something smothered in clingfilm and bloody cotton wool. I saw him eyeing up Thomas and Dinosaur man.

It was a small thing, a throwaway comment.

“Paedo,” he smirked. Then disappeared with his mates.

A barely audible piece of meaningless viciousness, but it was enough.

Dinosaur man was white. He carefully put Thomas on the floor and stepped back, looking at me with horrified eyes. I smiled and tried to reassure him, but the emotions chased their way across his face one by one, panic, disgust, fear. He didn’t know what to do with himself.

Thomas was chatting away, oblivious, waved goodbye to his friend and trotted happily off to school.

The next morning the dinosaur man wasn’t on the bridge and we never found out what had happened to him. I had never even asked his real name.

Feeling like the end of the world

by Lewis

Rob looked at his claws with a feeling of utter dejection. Useless. So thin and blunt at the same time. Everytime he tried to claw anything harder than earth they would chip or bend. He wondered what he had done in a past life to deserve this.

Bertha’s feet ached. She was soaking them in a deep mudpool. God it felt good. The pulsing died down but the ache inside only grew deeper. How long could she keep stomping for. What was the matter with her? All the other Bronts pounded the earth all day long, trees shook, fruit fell, animals and the ground literally quaked. She seemed to float, as if she didn’t even way upwards of 25 tonnes. She was so ashamed.

Terry stretched his wings out wide in the sun as he basked by the river. He smoothed and stroked his vast and beautiful body. The wool he had ripped from a mammoth earlier that day was a little bloody, but it was useful for cleaning the softer parts. He dipped it into the water and meticulously cleaned himself top to bottom. Glistening he smiled at the other Pterodactyls, proudly showing off his sleek streamline body. Tina sidled up to him. “God how do you do it?” She said in awe.

“It's all about watching what you eat, Tina. Our lightness of frame is essential to our aerial ability, you know. It wouldn't kill you to skip a few meals, eating is cheating”, Terry said with a disparaging glance at her.

Tina said nothing but sidled a little further away.

Now you’ve done it, though Terry, but continued to stretch and take in the sun.

Bertha was chewing her way through a small coniferous forest. Her belly had developed a shooting pain but she kept on chewing.

“Look, I can do em sure.” Said the voice of Eda, nasal and sharp to Robs ears. “But its gonna cost ya. I mean this sort of implant isn't easy to get hold of.”

“I know” Rob said meekly, “but look this is important, I need this.”

“Yeah yeah, I don’t need your history pal. But you're sure you want T-rex? They ain't cheap”

“I don’t care about the cost,” Rob stated, “They are the best. And that’s what i’ll have.”

“Ok, ok, calm down. Just asking. Right then, over here. And I have to warn you. This is going to hurt you a hell of a lot more than me.”

“Alright Berth, how’s it going?” Rob said. Some of the gang had got together at The Cavern for drinks.

“Oh you know”, Bertha said forcing a smile through the shooting stomach pain.

“Yeah tell me about it. What ya drinking I’ll get this.”

“The usual please.”

“So notice anything different about me?”

“You’re buying a drink does that count?”

Rob smiled and unsubtly flexed his claws.


Rob’s smile froze on his face.

“You like them yeah?”

“Sure. You do you... But I kinda liked how they were before.”


Two days later Terry was found dead. His glistening razor thin form was rigidly seized into a position that emanated glamour.

Bertha died of a stomach ulcer. After three weeks of intense pain she fell to the earth with a thud that shook the very foundations of the land. Unfortunately she was dead before she hit the ground so was unable to hear it.

Rob was hit by a meteor. He saw something falling and held his claws up to protect his face only for the small rock to smash into his razor sharp claws sending them instantly into his brain.

1 week later the big meteor hit wiping out most life on earth. Evolution hey. Funny old thing.

Argentinosaurus Poo

by Russ

Terri sat alone against the fence dabbing at her nose with the bloody ball of cotton wool and sighed for the umptieth time. She wasn’t a cheater, she was just really good at dinosaurs. Alfie had no right to say any different.

Alfie, meanwhile, was receiving the sort of overbearing medical attention normally reserved for Premier League footballers who’ve suffered an unexpected gust of wind to the elbow.

Nurse Higgins was holding an ice pack to his ear while Miss Berry knelt beside him telling him he was a brave strong boy as he stared directly down her blouse. Mr Carr was securing a ‘zone of safety’ around the scene, while occasionally glancing down over his shoulder to let his eyes also violate Miss Berry’s chest. The hamster faced headteacher was on the phone to… God knows - Alfie’s parents, the paramedics, the associated press, Downing Street, NASA?

The seemingly dying child had been hit on the side of the head with Terri’s Illustrated Book of Prehistoric Beasts. She’d lashed out in instinctive emotion after he called her a cheat for the third time and he’d immediately punched her in the nose with the cool focus of a bee who was also a boxer. He had a slightly reddened ear, she had blood gushing from her nose. He had Hunnyhill Primary School’s entire emergency response squad gathered about him, she had been barked at and left to slink away on her own. Nobody was paying any attention to Terri, she could be bleeding to death for all they cared.

Forty out of forty. It should have been the best day of Terri’s life. She was rubbish at reading and wretched at writing, she was even pitiful and painting, but she was bloody good at dinosaurs. Most people don’t even know there were forty dinosaurs, she knew them all by name and shape. She got full marks on the first test of her long seven-year life and it felt brilliant. She was so excited she started shaking slightly after Miss Berry read it out to the class. Then Alfie piped up.

‘Cheater,’ he coughed. Terri wasn’t sure she’d heard him but Henchman Harry’s giggling told her Alfie had definitely said something mean. Nobody else reacted, not even Terri or Miss Berry, so Alfie took another swing.

‘Cheat,’ he spat, this time slightly more word than cough. Everyone heard it and half the class tittered. Terri clenched her teeth, and her fists, and turned red. Miss Berry looked at the cougher and the clencher but clearly didn’t know how to handle it so pretended she hadn’t heard anything. Terri took a deep breath and decided to let it go, like her dad always told her to do.

Forty out of forty. Absolutely amazing.

That would have been the end of it had the playtime bell not rung giving Alfie one more opportunity to get the attention he wanted by yelling his accusation directly into Terri’s face at the deep end of the hopscotch markings.

Well, he’s certainly got attention now; Terri thought.

She wiped a stray spot of blood off the cover of her book and opened it up.

‘Argentinosaurus’ poo was the equivalent of 26 pints…’ she read, moving her lips as she did.