The Dinosaur King

Matthew Donnellon

Photo by Adam Mathieu on Unsplash

*a work of fiction

“Did you forget the powdered milk?” I asked.

“No,” she said.

“Are you sure?”

“Pretty sure.”

I looked through the food bag once again, and tossed it to her while I rolled out the sleeping bags.

After a moment of searching, she gave up, “I forgot it.”

“That’s going to make tomorrow’s cereal rather interesting.”

“There’s powdered Gatorade?”

I laughed, “I think I’ll pass.”

I fluffed up both sleeping bags and put them in the tent.

“Are you sure that’s going to be warm enough?”


“If I wake up freezing in the middle of the night I’m going to be angry.”

“It’s warm enough. And I have a bag of hand warmers too.”

“Oh good.”

“Don’t worry. I’ll keep you warm.”

“Oh? By going and turning on the car?” she said smiling.

“Yes, that’s exactly what I had in mind.”

“Uh uh.”

“Would you hand me the fuel canister?’

“I forgot that too.”


“Kidding. Kidding. Here,” she said and handed me the canister as I hooked up the stove.

“God, I thought we’d be stuck out here just eating granola bars for two days.”

“It’d be like college all over again.”

“Yeah, except I think the the tent is bigger than the apartment.”

“It probably is. And it has basically the same plumbing.”

I laughed thinking about how true that was.

Just as the water was coming to a boil, we heard something rustling through the trees.

“What was that?” she asked.

“It’s nothing.”

“It’s a bear isn’t it?”

“It’s not a bear.”

“Yes it is. It’s a grizzly bear isn’t it?”

“There aren’t any grizzly bears here. Only black bears.”

“So it was a black bear,” she said trying not to smile.

“It wasn’t anything,” I said, “besides you wouldn’t hear a bear coming anyway. They’re weirdly quiet.”

She was joking before but she couldn’t hide how wide her eyes were, “Wait, seriously?”


“If I get eaten by a bear I swear to God I will haunt you.”

“I’ll take my chances.”

We finished dinner and cleaned up watching the fire die down. I was just about to suggest turning in when we heard a massive crash in the forest.

“That was a bear wasn’t it?”

“That was way too big to be a bear.”

To make matters worse there were two crashes and it sounded like they were moving.

“Does that sound like it’s…”

“Coming this way? Yes. Yes it does.”

We got up to run back to the car, but then we heard an earth shattering roar that sounded unlike anything I’ve ever heard. It was terrifying. I’ve heard bears but this thing sounded 100 times bigger.

The crashing got louder and louder until even in the dark we could see two large creatures walking out into the clearing.

It couldn’t be.

“Are those?” she asked.

“I, I think they are,” I said.

There was no way this was happening. But, I was pretty sure that I was looking at two dinosaurs. T-Rex’s to be honest.

It was like something out of a movie.

However, the brief sense of awe was shattered when they started looking this way.

“I think we need to run,” I started to say but it turns out she was already ahead of me.

The two giant creatures followed. The ground shook when they ran. I caught up with her and lead her to into the woods. I thought the trees might slow them down.

I was wrong to a hilarious degree.

We were a couple hundred yards ahead of them but with seconds they were not far behind.

We sprinted and sprinted until we ran into a steep hill that was nearly vertical. It extended in both directions and there was no way to climb it in time.

The crashing stopped and two massive creatures stood before us.

I was sure that this was the end, but one of the monsters lowered its head. There was, of all things, a small boy on the back of the creatures head.

He couldn’t have been more than ten years old.

“Who are you?” he asked.

“We were camping and we ran when we saw the dinosaurs,” I said.

“Oh. They’re scary aren’t they?” he asked.

“Yes, Very scary,” I said not believing anything that was happening right now, “What are you doing on top of that dinosaur?”

“Me? I got lost. They found me. I was scared but they took care of me.”

“They did?”

“Yes. I like them.”

“Well I’m glad you’re here.”

“Why?” he asked.

“Because I thought we were going to be eaten.”

“Oh,” he said, “They’re really hungry. They’re still going to eat you. I was just checking to see if you were my parents. I’ve been looking for them.”

“Maybe we can help you find them,” I pleaded.

“No, I’m fine. Go ahead guys.”

And the creatures listened to him.

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Matthew Donnellon is a writer, artist, and sit down comedian. He is the author of The Curious Case of Emma Lee and Other Stories

Detroit, MI

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