Chapter 11 - A New Friend

From the safety of the train it had all been so different. But now Dinosaur World seemed mysterious. Strange. Perhaps even...dangerous. He came to a place where the trees arched over the tracks, making a dim, green tunnel.

He made his way quietly and cautiously, but when the bushes next to him started shaking violently, he yelled, "Yikes!" And when he heard a high, loud squeal, he ran and hid behind a giant tree fern. The bushes shook some more, and then out walked the strangest dinosaur Tim had ever seen. He was little. Not any taller than Tim. His stout, round body was colored in green and orange patches and he waddled on strong hind legs, using his tail for balance. But the strangest thing about the little dinosaur was his head. He had a flat yellow beak like a duck, big, round eyes and a weird tube, or horn, which curved back over his head about two feet.

The radio came to life with a crackle. "Zzbsts. It's a baby parasaurolophus."

"A para-what?" Tim asked in a whisper.

"A duckbill dinosaur. Parasaurolophus."

"Why's he making that noise?"

"He's probably lost and is calling for his mother. See if he'll eat some leaves. It might make him feel better."

A new friend

"Don't feed the dinosaurs" the ticket girl had said.

He never expected to get close enough to be able to. But then, he never expected to get lost either. He picked some tender leaves and held them out. The dinosaur took a nervous step backwards, looking at Tim with big, moist eyes. Then very slowly, he came closer and began nibbling. He was hungry. His eyes never left the boy. When he was done he gave a soft bleet and backed away.

Tim was amazed. "Wow. I've never fed a dinosaur before."

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