Discovering Dinosaurs (Tale In A Day)

So I took part in another AutoCrit writing challenge yesterday, this time it was a Tale In A Day one from their live shows. We were given four prompts – a warehouse, a sudden change in weather, a raptor, a dialogue prompt “Why did you do that?” and we had a day to write the story, this is what I came up with.

Discovering Dinosaurs - Tale In A Day Autocrit writing challenge

Emilia turned off of the main road and continued on along a dirt track, she’d set off that morning in search of supplies, Barrett had stayed back in the town. Half a mile into her walk the sky had changed from a lovely azure blue and had turned into a deep threatening looking grey, mere seconds later it started bucketing it down as large droplets of rain fell, the precipitation was heavy and unexpected.

Pulling her jacket up over her head, she quickly searched for somewhere to shelter. Between the trees was an old building, it appeared to be some sort of warehouse, it was the first building she’d seen since she’d left the town. As she got closer she saw how abandoned it seemed, as if no one had been there for years. There wasn’t a door, just an archway for an entrance that opened into a tall corrugated iron space with wooden beams in the ceiling area and a few empty crates were on one side, nothing else was visible.

Once inside she pulled her jacket back down and turned back to look out at the field beyond as the rain continued to fall. A rustling sound started, it appeared to be coming from behind where the crates were, she turned to see what it was “hello?” she shouted, “is anyone there?”

A muffled noise, more animal than human came from the same place a moment or two later, the noise sounded again, “hello?” she repeated.

It wasn’t long before she discovered the culprit, first a tail materialised from behind a crate then the rest of its body, a dinosaur, that’s who was there. At once she noticed how small it was, not that she was very knowledgeable about dinosaurs, perhaps this was a baby one, well if was then a parent must be around here somewhere, she figured a full-grown dinosaur might in fact be pretty dangerous, especially around its young. She would have considered leaving if it hadn’t still been chucking it down outside. The next minute there were heavy footsteps coming from the other side of the wall, okay too late for that plan, it looked like the other dinosaur had already arrived. Where should she hide? Behind a crate? No, she’d just have to try and…

A crashing noise sounded as the dinosaurs tail hit into the side of the warehouse building. Uh oh. The last time she’d come into contact with dinosaurs it hadn’t exactly ended well, he might have been friendly enough, but he’d left with her coat, what a dinosaur wanted with a human coat she’d never know, but she never did get it back and in this weather she didn’t want to lose another one. Standing halfway between one end of the warehouse to the other, the adult approached the entrance, eyeing her up, looking from her to its young and back again, she started to back off along by the side wall away from the direction of the baby, that seemed to work quite well as the dinosaur came in and went to its young, turning back to her only when it reached them.

Since the rain was slowly starting to ease, she walked backwards towards the entrance again, deciding it might be good to get away sooner rather than later, the young dinosaur had other ideas though, it was curious and ran out towards her, the parent didn’t react, just stood watching them, “um, hi,” she said as the young one approached her, it turned back and went to the crate nearest to her, the adult came forward and pushed against the lid with its face until it fell to the ground, the noise of it falling reverberated around the place, “why did you do that?”

The adult dinosaur looked first at her then to the crate and back again, it was obvious they wanted her to check it out, she cautiously approached it and peered over the top, inside was some old sacking, she reached in and lifted it out, opening the top of it to reveal some old metal items.

Footsteps crunched on the gravel across from the building, she turned to see Barrett at the entrance a moment later, “hey” she said, pleased to see him.

“Hi, it was raining pretty heavy before, I came out to see where you’d got to,”

“I ended up finding this place,” she said, “here, look at this” she showed him what was in the sacking.

“Wait, there are dinosaurs in here?” he said.

“Yeah and they seem friendly.”

“Until they get hold of your coat,” he joked, “we’d better be getting back before it starts raining again, the people in town said there are more storms due later.”

My story was read out on the live last night (which I ended up missing because it would have been 2am here!) but you can catch it on YouTube – Tale In A Day along with two other stories from the other people who entered, mine’s the second one in. I enjoyed joining in with this though, it’s fun coming up with stories from prompts. It was nice to hear positive feedback on my words too.


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