Yes ladies and gentlemen, you read it right! 5 months later, and it is finally here!
Welcome back my fellow Wikians, and sub-order of Woodians! It has been months and months since chapter 11 was published, leaving readers in the dark for that time. However, it is finally here, and this one is going to be a banger.
I don’t just say that, I mean that. First of all, it’s a unholy 8,500 words! Giving me space to pack in a lot of content for the fans. Also, I have included all the special things for the different tastes of readers, which will no doubt make this one special. Well, I shouldn’t delay any longer, because another minute, and we’ll be even more overdue. With that said, grab some popcorn(optional), and begin chapter 12 of ...
The night that is not night
It was 1:23, but Joshua didn't know it. It was morning, but the Sun had yet to rise. To Malchom, it was night, and he had only gotten a few wee hours of sleep. He stood in the doorway of his hotel room, his side resting against the door frame. He was looking out to the parking lot, and then further to the road, his best friend, and worst enemy; his trail of destiny unknown. Josh was not alone here, however, for there was a herd of Ceratopsians outside that he was watching. There must have been about twenty. Nine of them still in their ripe youth, eleven adults, varying from elderly to not much more experienced than the young. He just stood watching the young ones play, who no doubt were thinking that life was perfect. It was not. Joshua, and the wiser members of the herd had spotted an Allosaur, right in it's prime age, which was not good, because middle-aged Theropods were not always cautious, and could cause trouble. The Allo was not very young itself, it being seen so, because of the knobs and spikes starting to grow out of it's back and head, trademark of this InGen Tetanurine. The man and the herd watched the creature. Joshua had originally intended to come out of his dwelling to watch the majestic animals, but now he was making sure the Theropod didn't try anything. He didn't know what a shotgun would do to an Allo(his former weapon(another shotgun) didn't do anything to the Spinosaur), but he thought it could injure it. The Ceratopsians he was with, he guessed, were Nasutoceratops. They were relatives of the Sinoceratops, of which you could see grazing every now and then in his home region of Texas, a place so very far away now... the Nasutos were unique animals: these large Centrosaurines were the only known members of their vast group to not have a large nasal horn. In point of fact, it actually had two large brow horns, much like that of a Trike. The horns themselves were one of a kind, because they started to grow sideways, but then turned forward, forming pair of horns like that of a Bull's.
The Allosaurus finally left, quietly walking off into the morning that was night, yet still was. Joshua was an early riser, that's why he was up now. He had always had a fondness for how when you wake early, it was dark, like it was night. And, you were not as tired as you would be if it was late evening. He liked the nighttime, so the hours between 1:00 and 5:00, were his favorite time of day. One of the pluses of of waking up at the same time as a trucker, was the sacred Sunrise over the seemingly flat horizon. The unique fiery ball of death, that could still bring life, had risen well over two million times, according to the ancient reckoning of the late Irish-born Archbishop, James Ussher, who pinned the start of time in his literary work, the Annales Veteriset Novi Testimenti. More said, the Sun, and much more so the morning, was held sacred to the Jews in the late second century BCE, that they even wrote a prayer, or more properly a hymn, celebrating the times of day, stating(in Dead Sea Scroll, fragmentary form):
"Thou who art ...to bring out... who had created the morning as a sign to reveal the dominion of the light as the boundary of the day time... for their work."-Dead Sea Scroll 4Q-4o8, Fragment 1
Still, the rising of this heavenly body, orb in shape, and glorious in appearance, was always gorgeous; it's faint light breaking into the gates of deep night, into a realm of shadow, as the Star's light turned a deep orange, while the black sky gave way to a dark royal purple, and finally into blue, while only lasting the shortest time, but still being worth the early rising, being accompanied with heavy eyes, and the ever chilly, crisp air of wispy twilight...
The Sun was now partially visible to Malchom's eye, and the Nasutoceratops were getting ready to move on to other lands. Still slumped in the doorway(shotgun no longer wielded in hand) he listened to the Birds in the tall trees, and the snorts of bustling dinosaurs. Josh had turned the radio back on, and it was playing the same three minute, twenty-second song that played when he had went to sleep. He felt a nudge on his side: it was the raptor. It had startled him from his trance-like state, and it seemed it wanted food. The Dromeaosaur had his head pressed up against his side, in wanting, like a Dog. "Hungry?" Josh asked the animal, with a tired pronunciation of words. He straightened his posture, his neck slightly cracking from being in the position for a tad too long, and fished out of the warm, dry ocean called his pocket, a strip of jerky: the raptor's daily meal, though not just one per twenty-four hours. It was also his last piece. "Last one, pal..." He handed the food to the Saurian, and it ate the meat delicately, offering it to his jaws, and sat down just beside the man.
It was now 5:47, But Josh still did not know what time of dusk day it was. He was leaning over the hotel room's small sink, shaving, after just brushing his teeth. If you could call it shaving that is, because he only had a pair of dull scissors. He was merely trimming the short beard that had formed since the evacuation. Josh had only trimmed it once, and it had grown back long enough to be gotten rid of. At least, the most of it he could get off with scissors. Oh, how he missed utensils of the civilized world over three hundred miles away. As he groomed the evidently drained-of-energy face that was his own, the raptor stood at the door, which was widest open, watching some little Saurians scamper about. They were the same species as Edward's pet(Alexander, a Microceratus), and they were also smaller distant cousins of the recently-departed Nasutos. That wandering thought brought another: Mr Stevenson's paradisaical cooking. Joshua was going to make his own lower-quality food, but his mind, as well as empty stomach, had want for bacon and eggs once a more.
Thirty plus minutes later, he, his face tamed, got ready to eat a cold breakfast. The food was not his "Break of the fast", for since waking, he had eaten small food items such as, but not limited to, stale-flavored protein bars. First, however, he went into the bathroom and changed: he changed into jeans, a clean t-shirt, and a not so clean, blood-stained flannel jacket. The red was from the presently postmortem Deer he had skillfully killed back in Glen Rose. He thought of the parasite-ridden thing... oh, so delicious indeed. Finally, he put on his worn boots, and left the bathroom. He then made his way to the small table and sat where his wholesome breakfast was waiting: a peanut butter sandwich with a side of potato chips. The same he had had the previous night, but with fried potato slices as a bonus. He ate, but grateful of the option to even eat.
He finished eating his meal, and a time later, he had loaded up everything into the blue Bronco. His companion had already gotten inside, so he was ready. After doing one last check to make sure his belongings were all accounted for, he said goodbye to comfort, and got in the vehicle. He drove away leaving his last place of sanctuary behind him... with his leaving, the clock of black fate started counting down... he was running out of time...
Dinosauria Historia, and Ember's journey
As they departed their old dwelling, Ember yawned quietly, and then tried to stretch in the small area of the back. The windows were not yet rolled down, and it was chilly in the vehicle. These mountains were the coolest place he had ever been in, for he had always lived in the dense jungles, and only visited the desert(that truly was his specie's natural habitat). Though he was a Reptile, Ember's blood was warm like that of a Bird's. Velociraptors(and the whole complex family of Theropoda, and possibly their extinct close relatives, the Silesaurids) were actually closer in bodily function and form, to Avians than to true Reptilians. Some, but not the InGen clones, had fluffy fibers, and even more had feathers. That meant Ember had more control over his body temperature than a Lizard did it's own. A vast history has been built around the blood of dinosaurs, stretching back to their discovery, even though it was not recognized fully. Originally, dinosaurs were seen simply as old, dumb creatures, of which most was known. And whatever else there was to know? Well, that was unimportant. A view of these animals partially similar to our modern, intellectual understanding, was prominent for a short time, when the "Terrible Lizards" were first being pulled from the Earth. The scientific view, created by Richard Owens, the true discoverer of this new genus, the one who pinned the term "Dinosaur", and the arch nemesis of Charles Darwin(from which there was much hate from the latter to the former, but none from vice versa), was that these creatures were versatile and active, Bird-like, terrible beasts of old, which had gone extinct. This, of course, was not always excepted by uneducated Humanity. It also, along with what the new animals were, brought upon the supposed error in the concept of extinction.
During the latest 1700's, and most of the 1800's, it was common knowledge that animals, with no exception in genre, could not, in any way, cease to exist. They're argument was that the divine creator, God of the duality testaments in the Holy Scriptures, as well as universe, was perfect. Though it was a simple fact that shouldn't affect the possibility of the disappearance of life forms, it was used to combat the emerging theory. It, the theory, was considered severely heretical to state this newly christened, blasphemous concept as true. Eventually, the public had time to consider the world around them, and they soon excepted the theory now turned law; it was believed that extinction was God's will; his engagement on the animal kingdom: it was mostly believed that the new creatures discovered, such as Mammoths and other large Mammals(along with dinosauria) went extinct by Noah's flood. Now that extinction was accepted, another question that could have been asked, was what were they? Big Lizards, or something written of in olden works? The earliest conclusions on fossilized bones, of Whales and Mammoths, were that they were,
A. Massive Crocodiles or Whales.
B. Fallen Angels of the Two Hundred whom came in the days of Jared
C. The bones of Giants that Moses briefly spoke of, but that Enoch exhaustively wrote a history of.
Of course, they were later known to be of animals long extinct. The oldest scientific view, mentioned before, was then made but forgotten swiftly. The reason being because the area these creatures were being studied and criticized in, was Victorian England. The Victorians believed in the inevitability of progress. So, they turned the things into lethargic, brutish, fat, and ugly Lizards, from a primitive past, that died out from their own failure to just exist. They were inferior to all ahead in time. This view made the dinosaurs cold-blooded...
Had, let's say, a Victorian were to be told that Ember was a member of that recently-discovered species of Reptiles, they would say it could not be so, that it must be some other, non-Reptile creature, that it just had the appearance of one, or they would state that the dinosaur was the work of the Morning Star. Yet, more can be said regarding the Velociraptor. Ember, though already very much Bird-like, lacked three things: feathers, non-pronated wrists, and flesh around the skull that was not shrink-wrapped as if he was malnourished; that he had no food(which he had in ready supply). All three of these notable differences, came from the genetic manipulation, the cloning process used by InGen. Since the DNA extracted out of Amber and/or fossil material, was in fragments, the company under the gauze of Dr. Henry Wu, filled the gene gaps with the DNA of Amphibians, Crocodilians, and Avians, the fewest usage of which, being the most latter. This, of course caused genetic changes in the clone, during it's delicate and innocent embryonic stage.
Ember in himself, could be the topic of much conversation, which would last quite a spell of time...
Ember sat in the traversing vehicle still, now pleasantly warm. The change in temperature came from the fact that they were in the desert now, the highest desert, specifically in the mountains south and slightly right to where they had rested for the short deep evening. The mountains here were not the shady, lush, forest-bearing ones, but of Cacti. Every peak, small and large, was home to the many special groupings of this desert plant genre: the Saguaro Cactus, the most prevalent; the most common, and the tallest. Some growing large, reaching much taller than a large man. They had arms that grew outward as a natural norm, but started to grow in random patterns, up, down, and the such. However, they mostly grew out, and immediately upward. There were also Ocotillo Cactus, which were unique with their long arms, growing out with thick barbs, and small petals unique to their kind. In the mountains as well were Barrel Cactus, who's bulky form was armored with intertwining barbs thick as the fingernails of man. There were many unique varieties of Cacti here, so many in shape and vast size, as there are within the confines of animal kind itself. Though diverse, the Flora was sparse, but the little amount of vegetation, with the rocky, earthen landscape, gave the scenery an impression that you had the open freedom to roam, which you could. As they drove onward, Meaty stayed silent; said nothing at all. With no sound but the vehicle they were within, Ember watched the aforementioned beauty of the Earth go by swiftly. He thought of how the rock formations formed. Yet, he couldn't come up with a explanation. So his mind pondered more, and changed from pondering to questioning, and to remembering...
He began to recall in detail of mind, how he had got here, in this vehicle, with a Human. It had begun when he had climbed onto the boat, a thousand miles away it seemed. He was surprised the two Humans didn't attack him, but instead sailed the boat away from his burning home. Soon, they were approaching the first sight of new land Ember had ever seen. But, to his concern, there were more Humans on the land, and he feared they may try to harm him, unlike his transporters. He made the decision to go overboard, and swim. He didn't look back as he swam, far away from the area of land with a population. He swam along the coast, getting closer to the land every now and then. Soon, he came to an area without any Humans, and only vegetation. He felt a thrill of exploring this new world; this place of mystery. He may even find new creatures like himself, but he wished he could have told his younger self it wouldn't be so. He travelled in the jungle for a year, avoiding people and civilization at all costs. He saw many varieties of creatures he had never seen, and had killed several for food. This new world was a dream for him: plenty of larger food, shelter, peacefulness, and no Humans. Still, Ember wanted to find more of his kind, but it never occurred. The raptor traveled nomadically for twelve-score months, until he reached the desert parts of the new world. He spent little time here, and he moved to the farthest reaches of the known northern lands, where he came across the town. Two prominent things he noticed were that there were no Humans at all, and there were many animals he recognized from his island. However, he believed that they couldn't be the same ones, but a separate population, undiscovered by Humans. Ember, unknowingly believed that he was the only one that survived the apocalypse that ravaged his home. He occasionally thought that maybe one of his kind survived, but he knew better. There, in the deserted place, he stayed for a few days, until that fateful day, when he had met Meaty. Ember wondered what would have happened to him, had he not traveled with him. Ember actually would have hated to leave the Human alone. Ember had already saved the man twice, and meaty had offered him care he hadn't been given since his life as an infant. Most of the raptor's life, he had been a reject, an outcast, starting with his old pack, and with Wu. But, this simple Human, had given him sweet hospitality in a sour existence. The Dromaeosaur had at first despised Meaty for the most part, but in the past several days, he had started to feel a part of his heart being carved out for the Human. He had already nearly died for him, and him for Ember. He had realized that this Human was a true friend, and a member of their company. They were the two outlaws, who were surviving together, guilty of the crime of survival. It seemed that everything had wanted to stop him and the man, and furthermore, it became clear they were truly meant to be together, through thick and thin. Ember now understood that one couldn't exist without each other, and he now made commitment to stay with the Human, no matter what, and to fight with him, wherever they were going. It was truly amazing that in a few days time, both man and brute beast were allies, though unlikely, in a dismembered husk of a world, bent on their breaking.
Pondering until the end...
Joshua was a pondering man. To say it again in finer speech, he himself was a thinker of much; one individual soul to ponder many things. He truly had his head in the moisture of the clouds, but positivity was its product. Josh was not a thinker of solving the milestones of science, but of personal knowing. He occasionally found himself thinking of the most trivial things, compared to his situation. Still, those topics of such said, were, of course, the most intriguing sort, ranging from historical, scientific, and philosophical. Currently, Malchom was thinking of three things, all seemingly distinct(which—of course—they were), but each evolved into a new thought of mind.
Joshua kept his steady eyes on the road, only looking away periodically, to see anything he could. He shifted the vehicle, and shifted himself, making his healing leg more comfortable. Josh glanced at the mountain range he drove through, at least, a small portion of it. The view made Josh remember the importance of these high places to ancient peoples, and to today's religions. A person may see a mountain as a good hiking spot, but to, let's say, a neo-historic Mesopotamian, a large hill was where his gods dwelt in rule and judgment. In the past, mountains were used as places of worship for the ancients, and sacrifices were offered here. If your were to hear the term, "High Places," it would refer to a mountain. Since mountains were believed to be holy places, shrines were built upon them, so they could pay homage to the deity of which they offered their lives to. The highest known religious monument in the wide world, was located on a mountain called Hermon, a mount located in Lebanon, that rose well over nine-thousand feet above the ground, was made by the Canaanite peoples to worship El(their highest deity), who existed with his seventy Tidanu(Titan in Greek) children. The place also had importance to the Hebraic and Islamic Arab cultures, who the former came to the eastern Levant twice, believed that the mountain was the place where a group of fallen Angelic beings ascended to wreak havoc a primordial world. Even so, the later cultures built a temple at the base of the mountain, dedicated to the Goat god, Pan, that stands to this day, along with the temple on the peak, and is famous for being in what is called Pan's grotto(a large cave in the rock face). Peoples through time gave great importance to mounts, and when they had no way of building a temple on one, they made their own in the form of stone Ziggurats of fertile Babylonia, and the temples dedicated to the personas of the Sun and Moon, located in the South American jungles. The earliest known record of a artificial mountain comes from the widespread story of the tower known as Babel(which was erected by a king named Nimrod, son of Kush), who started the project, but to his failure, it was brought down to ruins before completion, and in truth, the remains still exist in the Iraqi city of Iridu. According to a Rabbinic text, it took a day to walk around the structure when still standing, but this could be a mere exaggeration. This tower was the first Ziggurat(a mountain for a god made by the hands of man), and it can be shown to be so by it's name, Babel which means "The mountain of god". In the very state Josh was in, a mountain called Graham was one of the holiest mountains to the Native Americans, of whom believed a white man with a beard came down on a silver disk, on mount Graham to make the world. Other tales include a mountain range near to Malchom, the Superstition Mountains, to be the place where a group of prehistoric Humans momentarily escaped a global flood, and drowned, leaving this old version of Humanity extinct. Man has had a fascination with the peeks for his entire existence, and we still worship on mountains today, in the form of observatories, where he worship the Stars by giving them our curiosity, and our constant wonder. Joshua went over this long escapade of thoughts, and it lead to him thinking of how the mountains were truly quite a pleasant sight, but they could conceal two things: cartels, and BX. Though he doubted there were cases of BX in the premises, he was wary of the cartels and gangs, who, if they got the chance, might attack him here in the range. BX still was a problem, and he hoped he was right, meaning he hoped that it was a water, or still worse, airborne Viral disease, and that his gasmask could protect him. Still, there were chances it was spread otherwise. The interesting thing about BX, was that it managed to infect the dinosaurs, and make them its main carriers. It was quite funny how people a few years back, were trying to keep the animals alive, but Joshua wondered that if someone saw a dinosaur outside of the BX zone, they might kill it, because the disease. Back then, they worshiped their Reptile gods, and he remembered himself saying, "They wouldn't if one started chasing them." Now the dinosaurs were threats to mankind, and most likely very few held a pro-dinosaur view. Maybe Josh was wrong, but he didn't think it. These things Joshua thought of, while he drove on to his destination.
From the sky in a Bird's eye view, the Bronco was a small blue dot, moving on the asphalt path below, heading southward bound. This little dot was the only moving thing around, but not the only living thing. From Joshua's earthen-bound perception, nothing around him(besides plant life) was alive. He was alone. Where he was now, was outside the large area of Phoenix, Arizona, which encompassed smaller abandoned districts like Chandler, Tempe, Gilbert and Mesa. He had made no stop in the large cites, and had left them behind. South of the urban place, was a large expanse of desert mountains called The Valley. This area was dominated by large, as well as small mountains and hills. These were all granite formations, varying from age(all the way to the incomprehensibly distant Middle Proterozoic times, to the much more recent Cenozoic era), formed from volcanic eruptions and activity, lasting upon many thousands of years. Further south, at the end of the gap between the former Human civilization and other places, sat two towns called Casa Grande and Eloy: small towns with once small populations. He was heading this way, and when he entered Casa Grande, he would head west, and finish the journey in roughly six hours. Joshua was exited that he was so close to salvation, but a sudden Yod showed itself in his consciousness. It had, since he had left, been a mere Phantasmata. Josh was so close, but he never considered that California might have been abandoned as well. He had always kept positive, but now he began to consider this thing. There could be a good chance that Cal, and other areas were abandoned, and maybe even the whole country. Good gosh, there was of course a smaller, but still present possibility that the whole of Northern America was abandoned, and beyond that... he dared not think of such things. He decided to stay focused, and to strive and drive onward.
It was now hot, hot like it was back in New Mexico. Josh wiped his forehead of salty perspiration, and rolled down his window. He looked back at his friend, who was alert, getting a drink from the bowl of water on the floor. Joshua had laid a few animal skins in the back, which the raptor was on, and it seemed it was comfortable for him. He turned back to the road, and popped open with a hiss, another orange-flavored soda to drink. He felt nervous, like he hadn't before, which was not good. He, every now and then, looked to the East and West, to see if anything moved, but saw nothing. He also noticed the wind was picking up, and his realization became apparent when the wind had picked up even more, and was blowing Sonoran Desert sand around. To this, he rolled up the windows. Outside, a miniature dust storm had been birthed from the womb of Nature. The music he had had playing stopped, and the vehicle went silent, leaving only the wind outside the moving shelter to hear. It was a unnerving silence, so he spoke indifferently to the dinosaur: "hey," he said. "what made you decide to come along?" Of course no response came, but he continued on, as if speaking to a person. The one way conversation showed how familiar the two had become, so he went on, saying, "You know, I at first only brought you along as a shield, some type of weapon for my own protection... I kinda feel bad for wanting to do that. Shucks, I don't know why I thought of you as a stupid animal." he stopped, and took another drink. "I can't understand how they managed to create a animal so smart back in those dang labs on that island," he went on. "But maybe it's just because you are intelligent, and not just because you were designed that way. Really, I can't imaging your life being imprisoned on that island." Josh began to think of what he would do when he finally made it to California. He had a dinosaur with him, and they of course wouldn't let it in with them. He most likely would have to leave him here, but that felt really wrong to do so. He didn't speak anything more, and he wouldn't for a time, for his clock had stopped.
When he heard the rumbling of engines that were not his own, a hope seemed to fade from his soul, and a shocking, bitter black substance filled the space, leaving nothing left of light. Joshua knew what it was, and what has happening. They were here... Them, those predicated by an old hermit of a man speaking prophecy. Joshua panicked. He looked into his rear-view mirror, to see what he so terribly suspected: vehicles. Vehicles that brought chaos and damnation to his soul. From the mirror, he saw a brown Chevy of some model, a Jeep colored a faded dark green, and a one on a dirt bike. In the back of the Chevy, sat several men, all holding weapons, melee and firearms. They were gaining speed, and they would get in firing range. They had come out from behind two large rock hills, making no sign of there existence. Joshua's mind continued to panic, but slowly he took control of it. While they were coming closer, he started thinking, using his mind for survival once more. He had to think fast. Joshua wouldn't let them take his life. They would not stop him, for he was less than ten hours away from his destination. He had come too far to be taken down by evil. Josh was going to fight onward, and would kill every one of these scum, and he wouldn't even feel remorse. He was the one who had a righteous aim, and darkness would not take hold. No remorse, no regret. Another day, another death. Another sorrow, another breath. Joshua had shed blood, sweat, and tears to get to his new home! Blood, shed from his fight with the terrible Draco of Hell he had fought with in the rainy desert. Sweat, shed from his dry skin in the strain of surviving, and tears let forth for the lost souls in Lakewood. No! he would not fail, and if he did fail, at least he would go down fighting like a mighty Bison being ravaged by Wolves. Joshua made a silent, but quick prayer of faint hope, to whomever was listening. If there was a God, a Universal Law, a Divinity, he begged that his life would go on, and believed that there was something that had kept him and his animal friend alive through this journey. He prayed that if he didn't make it, the raptor did, because it would be his fault if the poor thing was killed. He prayed, and ended it with a quiet, "Amen..." let out of dry lips. With it now finished, he reached over and grabbed his shotgun, his second friend, and laid it in his lap. Then, Joshua Malchom stepped on the gas pedal, and surged forward, swallowing future, and burning gasoline away into nothingness. It had now begun...
He cruised forward, keeping his worm boot smashed against the pedal, which showed no sign of being let up. The vehicle jerked as he went out of a easy drive of twenty, to as fast as his vehicle could go. He started to shifting, keeping in mind that he would have to multitask no doubt. As the blue Bronco surged forward, the raptor was pushed as well to the southern end of the automobile, and was pushed against a front seat. Joshua paid no mind to big thump he felt and heard behind him; his mind was working out plans, as how to escape this three score army of degenerates. He made note that he had gas, but a half tank could burn fast, and he didn't want to damage anything on the vehicle by hitting a pothole. There would also be the occurrence of him steering, which meant he could accidentally go off road. He pushed out all other things, and put his caution first. He looked once more, and saw the Savage on the bike gaining on him. He readied himself to fire at the man, hoping to end him before he got a good shot at the Bronco. The time span between the closing in of the rider was tense, and he gripped his shotgun in his hand, ready to put it out the window, and end a life. His palms were sweaty. The man came closer. He started shouting something in Spanish that Josh could get the jist of: "Slow down and pull over, or I'll shoot." "Sorry buddy," Joshua said, making a scowl. He almost wanted to shout back, but he wisely didn't. The man was now next to the vehicle, some two yards away, and Josh saw he had no shirt(idiotic), and a pair of cut off camo shorts, with his own worn boots. He was Hispanic, but Josh couldn't make out his face, for a helmet covered his face mostly. None of these factors mattered to him. The man started making gestures to Malchom to stop, while aiming a Mossberg at Josh's face. "No thanks!" Josh said, and he showcased his own firearm. The cyclist got a face full of lead, as Josh fired his gun at him. He had taken the man's life, the first life ever taken by him, but he felt no care... it was his fault, not Josh's. Instantly, the man's body went limp, and he spun out of control, his body being crushed under the bike, his dead skin being buzzed off by the road. He watched as it went tumbling, and his sight followed, in amazement, as the bike was hit by the Chevy, and a man was thrown out, as the truck almost flipped. They didn't stop to aid their lost soldier. Two down, a lot more to go, he thought.
The next enemy he was to meet, was the Jeep, which came up behind him, and Joshua saw there was a white man in the passenger seat, yelling into a megaphone, telling Josh to stop in Spanish. Did they think he spoke Espanol? He dangerously stuck his head out, and yelled: "English" guys! Comprende? While he did this, he caught the driver off guard, the man seeing his prey mock them. When Josh did so, he swung out his shotgun, and fired, three times, right at the driver of the Jeep, that was a Hispanic man, who was in the middle of the highway, giving him a clear shot. Joshua sped forward, hoping that he had killed the driver, but he looked in the mirror to see he was fine. Obviously bleeding and hurting, but he was fine. Josh hit the steering wheel in frustrated anger. That's when they retaliated, and started shooting their own rounds. Josh heard the discharge of a gun, and ducked, hoping the raptor had done the same. A semi-automatic gun—probably an AR-15 or something—started firing at him, and the bullets whizzed above him as the back window shattered. It was so close, that Josh thought he had gotten hit, but hadn't felt the blow yet. Luckily, he hadn't been struck. He got ready, and started plan B, otherwise known as completely insane maneuvering. Joshua, feeling bad the dinosaur was getting racked around, slowed down, and veered to the left, which was the opposite of where the Jeep was now, and slowed steadily, to start driving next to the faded green Jeep. There he was, right next to it, literally a few feet away, and he was welcomed with a shot aimed at his head from a pistol. It had come from the the guy driving, and Josh wouldn't let him get another shot. He ducked, and when he came up, his own killing device was raised, and he fired, hitting the man, who let out a scream. Josh sped up, leaving the Jeep behind, which had already slowed down, getting left in the dust of his little victory. He had taken two men out, and had disabled one vehicle. Now there was the Chevy, with one driver, and three men in the back. Malchom saw that two men carried an AK, and one had a club. The club-wielding savage was in football gear. He seemed to be their juggernaut...
Contestant 1: A Ford Bronco, with a man wielding a shotgun, and a Velociraptor.
Contestant 2: A Chevy pickup, with a driver, three men armed with AKs, and one with a club in road warrior armor.
The Chevy was gaining speed as Joshua shifted, his blood pumping, and sweat making his face slick. The high wind had now picked up more, and dust was coming into the Bronco, through the windows, and the exiting bullet holes in the windshield. It was like an action film around Josh, and sometimes life can seem more like a movie, thought himself. This was going to be it: if he could take out the boss in this game of life, he would win it all. The Chevy finally caught up, and was behind the Bronco, but no gunfire occurred. Instead, the man in football gear climbed onto the roof of the truck, and Joshua saw what would happen. Quickly, he started loading his gun again, while the juggernaut prepared for his moment of pathetic glory. Joshua finished loading, right when he felt the shaking THUMP, as the brute hit the top of the vehicle. As soon as he did, Josh heard him move forward: he was going to try to come through the windshield. Sure enough, the bat came down, it's metal form smashing the glass. Joshua aimed his gun right above him, where he guessed the guy would be, and doing damage to his own vehicle, shot through the roof, began slaying the man above. Luckily, his weapon was not pump-action, so damage could be done over and over until empty. The goon's bulky corpse fell off the roof, hit the ground with a plastic clunk, and then was ran over by his comrades who cared not. Spanish screaming once more, and the AK-47s when off. Joshua heard the discharging, and swerved, trying to avert getting shot, but unfortunately, he was hit on the arm. He let out a terrible scream, and cursed. He looked at his arm, and saw a red stain spreading on his flannel jacket, his blood joining that of the Deer's. Joshua kept moving unpredictably, and he heard the raptor let out a bark of pain as he was obviously hit. When he heard that, Joshua felt a surge of broiling, lava-like burning of rage. They had shot the raptor... In panic, his arm bleeding, the dinosaur in the back no doubt bleeding out as well, Joshua leaned out once more, firing again and again, and then a few times more, until he was empty. He managed to shatter the Chevy's glass, and hurt the driver, but that only enraged the gunmen. Joshua continued to try to evade the attack, but he knew that he was going to get shot up. In desperation, he looked ahead to see a change in the main road: a ramp to an overpass that went to another highway. That would be his only way out, he knew. Shifting, his blood pumping still, in his body, and out, he sped forward, they villains behind him.
He shifted again, and sped onward, and got ready to get onto the exit. The raptor behind him was silent, but he dared not look behind himself, to see his possibly dead companion. He only looked forward, straight ahead. But not on the road. He flew up the exit, as it inclined toward the other path. Joshua felt a candle flame-sized burn of hope, as the Chevy began to fall back. Almost there, he gripped the synthetic leather of his steering wheel, and came up to the turn. Josh got ready to turn at dangerously high speed, when he felt a drop in the road, and realized that there was section of the road torn apart... and he had ran over it. They, the cartel, had made a massive asphalt chunk-filled pothole right there, in the preparation of a chase, and he never saw it. The Bronco dipped toward Earth, and flipped upside down, low to the broken-up ground as it went airborne. Joshua felt gravity leave his form, and found himself opposite the ground, descending. Joshua's heart went cold, and he saw that he was going to crash. As he thought this, the Bronco finished it's spin of terror, and went almost like it had been on the road. It then came to the other side of the road, over the lower end of the overpass, and then began to roll. Joshua's insides twisted as the Bronco rolled down the steady incline. He was turning, spinning out of control, and knew that he had failed, that he had been beaten down badly; he was going to die. His thoughts only really lasted a few seconds, but they were filled with regret at what he had chose too do, back in Glen Rose. He should have stayed, but there was nothing he could do, as death-that thing that had come close to him before-but now embraced him with a cold, bony, skeleton grip. He thought of how he had gotten the raptor most likely killed, and if he was alive, he wouldn't survive the crash. Images flashed in his brain: his angry uncle, his deceased parents, Edward, with his offering of a small but generous breakfast, and that lost love he hoped he would soon meet again. Life had been short for him, but he felt a small, quiet peace as existence all went black. It had seemed the journey was perfect and sweet, but it had all gone so very bitter. He had it coming, and no soul could ever escape fate. Destiny had caught up with him, and he had been told to stop, but he stubbornly couldn't. Then, Joshua Elmer Malchom was no more...
The world was spinning like a child's toy top, moving a thousand miles a wretched hour. Ember's mind racked as the vehicle crashed and rolled on the desert ground, insane physics hard at work. Each crash threw him about, and every roll bruised his already wounded hide; Ember had been shot right in his upper leg, near the thigh, which was bleeding bad enough to where his lower appendage and the vehicle interior was painted sporadically with blood. His muscles hurt like he had been hit brutally by a bat, and cuts and lacerations were being born on his form, destined to die early, or grow to become scars of remembered pain... he might not live long enough to even remember. The raptor clung to being awake, but he came close to blacking out. Raptor did not know how to pray to a higher authority whatever it may be, like the Human may have, but Ember just hoped, hoped with vigor like none did. He hoped he would live, and not bite dust. Finally, the ride of terror ended with a crash of violence. Ember was thrown hard against the roof: the thing was on it's head. Ember then came closest to possible death then, but his hopes came through. The raptor tried to clear is head of a fog that had come when they crashed. Finally he managed to collect himself. He looked around, his beaten body bleeding. His neck hurt, but he tried to turn his ringing skull enough to see Meaty. He was upside down, hanging limply, a massive abrasion on his face. Purple colored bruises were visible as well. Ember felt fright. The Human wasn't moving. He could be dead. Oh no... Ember crawled toward Meaty in the broken hull, inching closer, his form aching. Soon, he was next to him, so he looked to see if he was alright. He didn't move, or make any sound. Ember knew that he hadn't survived. Meaty was dead, and he was alone.
Ember felt sorrow at the death of his friend, and intense hatred for the Humans that had caused the crash. They had killed the Human, his only friend, whom he had never even learned the name off. Meaty was dead. Why? Why did he have to die? The Humans had not been far behind when they wrecked, that meant they would no doubt be here soon. Ember had no time to mourn but a few moments, of which he raged. They killed his only friend, the only Human that had granted him protection, and the only one that fought to save him. He didn't even know where the Human wanted go in his vehicle, but it didn't matter, because the raptor had come because the person seemed smart enough to give food and shelter. After that, from all they had gone through, Ember saw the Human genuinely cared about him, and they had really become companions. Ember had known love from another for only a short time when young, but he had regained it with Meaty, but now he was gone, his lifeless corpse hanging. Ember doubted he would find any other that really wanted to aid him, and get Ember's aid in return. Who were these people who attacked them? Savages? Perhaps they were sent by Wu, that Human from his past. It could be so, for Wu had wanted to kill Ember, and would no doubt be ruthless. That didn't matter, however. Ember raged, and thought of what to do: perhaps he could climb out of the twisted wreck, and run. But that would be plainly a move of cowardice. Meaty had died to save himself, but also Ember, and it would be wrong to, at least, not take sweet vengeance on these vagabonds. That was what he would try to accomplish; to succeed in(whether it worked or not-which almost didn't matter): to fight these Humans, and kill all of them, if he could. It was the most honorable trail of life Ember could take in remembrance of the Human. With that, he took one last look at his deceased friend, and tried to find a way out.
He shifted around, not quite gingerly, but more restrained in the hull of the wrecked vehicle. The windows were broken, but most had shards of glass still in their frames. They were blades of crystals waiting for a victim. Soon, he decided to head out the window to his left, which because of the reversion, was the right back window. He climbed out, his bulk sliding through, only getting a few guys from glass. He ignored the pains of small size. Ember exited his near grave, and stood, his form aching. His bullet hole wound bled still, but his body had already started stopping the discharge of red. The raptor limped in the direction of where they had come. The wind had yet to cease, and it still blew earthen particles in the air, sending lite gusts of sand against the back of his neck. He looked around, and saw nothing of the attackers. That is, until a revelation of sight shown unto him a vehicle coming towards him. It past under the overpass of which they had tried to take, but had gone over. They had arrived, and Ember quickly hid himself behind the vehicle, away from the Humans' eyes. Ember waited for them to stop, which he knew they would do. He crouched as they drove their automobile up to their masterpiece of destruction. The Dromaeosaur prepared himself for the filth to show themselves. They stopped, and he heard men jump out, babbling in a language different than Meaty's , of which he had heard spoken only in the southern regions of the world. It seemed the language of Meaty was mostly spoken in the upper parts of Earth, while the other in the southern. Then, one thug came up to the vehicle, and looks in at the corpse of Meaty. The man spoke something, and started to pry the door open with a bar of some sort. He then started taking Meaty's body out. When Ember saw this, he knew what they wanted of them: FOOD. They were going to eat them, dead or alive to begin with. His muscles rippled, and he made his move of fury.
Ember, his scales of molten fire and ashen black, went around the vehicle, and forward swiftly, letting out a squeal-like hiss. He lunged at the man, leaping at him. His killing toe claws were primed, and when Ember made impact, they went off like a switchblade, cutting into the man's unprotected flesh. He screamed as his torso was torn into shreds by the raptor's maw and claws. The man toppled back onto the ground, and Ember made short work of the Human... his whole front was mangled: he was still alive, bleeding out, but no longer a threat. Then came another man, jumping out of the back of his own vehicle, wielding a steel pipe. Ember had to be careful. The man attacked, trying to deal a unhealthy blow to the dinosaur's head, which he did not manage to do, for the animal ducked. As he swung at nothing, Ember opened his jaws, and struck the pipe-wielder's weapon-carrying arm, crunching it with a loud SNAP!
Ember took care of him, ignoring the pain of his bleeding leg. He looked up from the dead Human, to see another in the back of the vehicle, fiddling with a gun. But it wasn't a normal gun: it was a tranquilizer gun, a weapon Ember had dealt with before. The man loaded a dart in the gun, but Ember ran, and jumped up into the pickup, shredding the man before he could shoot. The gun now disabled, Ember toppled over the side of the vehicle, and back onto the ground, digging his claws into the screaming man's belly. Blood splattered on the dusty ground, and the man finally died, his arm twitching even after death. Ember lifted his jaws which were red with gore, done with killing the killers. He'd done it, he had killed them all, he had... Ember heard a rattling sound, and turned around, just in time to see a man in the back do the pick up holding the gun... before the raptor could lunge at the defiant villain, the man fired, the gun making a CLICK! He felt a prick of a needle on his shoulder. Ember still tried to attack, but when he tried to jump into the pickup, he had a tiresome feeling come over him, unlike anything he had before. His vision went blurry, and he started sinking to his knees, before ultimately collapsing. His head hit the ground, and he couldn't move. Ember could see the sky, and the side of the truck, but no man. He understood what was happening. He was dying.
As Ember started to lose his conscious state, he felt a heavy regret. A feeling of regret for many things. He was going to die, slowly, and he was afraid to die. He knew not what lay beyond life. What's going to happen? he thought. The raptor thought of how he never had found a mate, and how he had made only one true friend, but had lost him. He regretted coming along, not matter the friendship he had with Meaty. It wasn't worth dying... or was it? Ember then understood that destiny was destiny, and him going with Meaty was a gift to him: a pack member. Even if he died, he would be given that gift, and his life would be complete, for there would be nothing more for him to do. Maybe he would see Meaty again in an afterlife, or in a reincarnation. Perhaps he would. But now he was the last of his kind, and his genes would not only die off, but his whole species. True, he had to die, but he wish he had died of old age.
Ember continued to look at the blurry sky, and faint hope came to his heart: that maybe the dart he had been shot with, was for tranquilizing an animal, not killing them. Maybe he would wake up after it all went black, just maybe. The last image Ember thought of, was of his home island, so very far away, where he wished he was dying on.Goodbye... world... Then, the world faded to black, leaving reality behind...
Well guys there it is! Please tell me what you guy’s think, it means a lot when you give this post a ❤️, and leave a comment. It keeps the post in the trending, letting more and more become followers. Anyhow, I’ll see you again, much sooner for chapter 13: Awakenings!
Everyone have a wonderful holiday season, and Merry Christmas!🎄
*Two Finger Salute*