Title: Raptor Duo (4/?)
Author: Perotessa Detwieler (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Category: dramatic, totally FANTASY!!!
Pairings: R+1, 2+1 and 2+H
Disclaimer: THEY'RE MINE! THEY'RE MINE! And the only way you'll get them back is to pry them out of my cold dead hands!!!!
Warnings: None really, I could get really kinky...but I am not into raptor sex :P
Spoilers: Maybe for the book "Raptor Red".
Archived:At the DHML Fanfic Archive http://www.kikotei.net/gw/dhml/ficarch/index.htm
And my Perotessa D's Fanfic Archive: http://www.salinas.net/~cearda/gwing/fanfic.html
Notes: A fusion of Raptor Red and Gundam Wing with some Jurassic park thrown in as the setting. If you haven't ever read Raptor Red this might be sort of confusing to you....but I hope you read it! It's got a happy ending!!!
Chapter 4 - Surf and Turf
off the Coast of Costa Rica
Genutec Site B
Raptor Duo doesn't know why the little chick is dead. Its body lies peacefully in the sand, as if it were napping, not far from the pack's new riverside nest. Raptor Duo thinks it is a pretty chick. He always liked it best of Hilde's three children.
Raptor Duo very gently touches his upper lip against the chick's chest. There's no blood, no visible wound. But the body is cool and stiff. The chick lost an internal battle two hours ago, overcome by a runaway respiratory infection.
Raptor Duo has seen death a thousand times. He's watched dinosaur viscera ripped out of still-living bodies. And yet, this Utahraptor chick is one of the saddest sights he has seen.
His consort is nervous--he doesn't want to be blamed for the death--and he tried to make himself inconspicuous. He sees Hilde walking slowly toward him, and he hides between the roots of an oak tree.
The chick's mother approaches Raptor Duo and stops, looks at the adults, and stares at each of them, then sees the chick in the sand. Raptor Duo's body language tells her that the pack has suffered a loss.
Hilde comes up to the dead chick and begins to make crying sounds. Raptor Duo tries to console Hilde by making cooing noises and nuzzling her neck and by leaning aginst her chest. But the bereaved mother starts to howl and shake, her eyes wild and wide. First her neck, then her shoulders and thighs trembles. The other young chick scrambles away in fear--she's never seen her mother like this. The oldest chick joins Raptor Duo in preening her mother.
It does no good. Hilde collapses on her ankles, pawing at the chick, turning the little corpse over and over until its hide is covered with wet sand grains. Raptor Duo is afraid to leave Hilde alone but afraid to stay next to her too. Hilde's wierd moaning gets louder, and she swings her arms in spastic arcs.
Raptor Duo feels Hilde's body start to go limp and fall away from him--and then it stops and stays still. Soomething is holding the grieving mother up from the other side. Raptor Duo looks over Hilde's shoulder to see what it is.
It is his consort; Heero.
He's pushing gently and making cooing noises.
Together, Duo and Heero spend two hours holding Hilde. Gradually the moaning grows quieter, the shaking stops, and she closes her eyes and goes to sleep. Heero drags over some branches to make a temporary nest right there. The entire pack huddles together when sunset comes. It's a difficult night. Raptor Duo has to groom Hilde every time she wakes up.
The morning comes, and Raptor Duo feels drained. Hilde is finally sound asleep, snoring noisily. Heero looks at Raptor Duo--he's sitting up with a dull, lifeless expression. He nudges the double marked raptor. Then he decides that he must get Duo a present.
Off to the river he goes, sniffing and digging at curious objects half buried in the sand and mud. He needs something to cheer Raptor Duo up. He needs play-food.
Over the last few months he's watched Duo enjoy himself many times, poking and nipping and clawing at strange food objects. Creatures of bizarre shape and pungent taste. Fish heads, dried lizards, bloated fullballs, fresh-water clams that no raptor can pry out of thier shells. He's learned that Raptor Duo likes food that challenges his mind.
What he wants to find is some animal so weird that he himself would never think of eating it.
Smells of rotten and half-rotten water animals come up from the sand, but none of these seem quite right. Some are too gooey and sloppy. Some have hard-edged body parts that cut his lip when he tries to pick them up.
An eight-inch-long object, pointed at both ends, has promise. It smells fishy in a general sort of way, but it's not like anything he's eaten. And it has a very strange outer shell with hairs and pointed things sticking out. He taps the body with his hindfoot. To his immense surprise the pointed body runs sideways between his legs and under a rock.
//sideways running--wierd\\ he thinks. Carefully he tilts up the rock, and the pointy thing runs sideways the other way.
Fhhhhwhop! He jumps on the sideways-creature, smushing it down into the mud. Bubbles come up. He fishes down to grab the thing--but the thing grabs him. His index finger suffers a sudden sharp pain, and as he pulls his hand up, the crab holds on with one of it's big heavy pincher-claws. //This is perfect!\\ he thinks.
He runs back to where the family is sitting. Hilde is still snoring. The chicks are just waking up. He bobs his head at Raptor Duo. He doesn't look up. Heero drops the crab between Duo's legs and it scuttles straight up his chest.
"EEEeep!" Duo makes a little cry and stands up. Suddenly he's out of his mood and into figuring out this new thing.
He chases the crab up the riverbank,and his consort chases it down. They push it down into the mud, and they dig it back up. Heero holds it against a rock, and Duo tries to pry into the crab's shell with his thumb and teeth.
At last he succeeds in popping the bottom shell off. Heero refuses to taste it, but Raptor Duo immediately chews off pieces.
He likes it a lot.
The rest of the day is spent crab-catching and crab-eating. They catch them together, and Raptor Duo eats every one.
Raptor Duo and his consort spend the day with the chicks. It's not a bad life at all, being a pack of rivercombers. The rivers offers many gifts. The oldest chick finds the fresh carcass of a Hadrosaurs. The head is already gone--bitten off in some unseen mortal combat below the river's surface.
Something about the kill sends shivers of unease pinging down Duo's spine.
As the sun sets, Raptor Duo and Heero sit together on the riverbank, watching the Dryosaurus slowly venture into the forest to graze.
Heero feels accepted now. He considers himself a full pack member. Over the last few months, as the pack made its way slowly to the river, the bond between him and Raptor Duo has become very strong.
The pack began its passage westward when conditions became intolerable in the upper meadows of the grasslands. At first, Hilde growled and snapped at Heero every day. Then little by little, she became more tolerant.
Yesterday, when he leaned aginst Hilde, was the first time he had ever touched her without being bitten. He knows he'll never really like Hilde, but he has learned to tolerate her and to work around her personality quirks and to avoid her when her bad moods set in. And he knows that Raptor Duo appreciates his efforts.
Raptor Duo feels good despite his sadness at the loss of the chick. Hilde has stopped trying to kill Heero. That's the first foundation for a permanent, stable family life.
Thier present situation is not without complications. They are not the only pack of raptors who have found the riverbank a safe haven from Dilophosaurs. The evening air is full of fresh scent.
Raptor Duo catches sight of a pair of dinosaurs silhouetted against the setting sun. Utahraptors, strangers. Heero sniffs and takes a few steps toward them. Raptor Duo catches thier scent-signal. They're females, unattached.
Heero stands for a long time, then comes back and sits at Raptor Duo's side, growling. The strangers lower thier heads and withdraw. They do pause to dung-mark a tree. Raptor Duo watches them until they are completely out of sight, and he and his consort settle down to listen to the river and watch.
Raptor Duo sits up suddenly. Something is wrong. He quickly scans the surrounding forest trying to pinpoint what it was that woke him up.
Suddenly it hits him. There is no sound other than the river rushing by.
That is never a good sign.
He turns to nudge Heero awake when a dark form leaps out from between two trees screaming holy hell as it attacks Heero's slumbering form.
Duo struggles to disentangle himself from Heero's body and rise to his feet to defend his choosen mate.
Heero, startled out of deep sleep wrenches upwards, foiling his attacker's strike to the back of his neck.
Duo looks on for a second shocked to realize that the attacker is none other than Hilde.
He screams a threat call of his own and joins the fray, knocking Hilde off of Heero and into a mangrove tree. He stands in defensive posture next to Heero who clumsily gets to his feet.
Hilde shakes her head and slowly rises to her feet as well. She snarls meancingly at the pair all reason and sensablity gone. She awoke earlier in the evening, alone with only the body of her decesed chick close to her. She had stared at the body for a while, a burning irrational hate growing within her. All she knew was that her chick was dead. Everything had been well before that male had shown up. Before Heero showed up, she was making good kills with Duo her partner, her chicks were fed and healthy they weren't dead. It all had to be Heero's fualt.
She then rose and tracked the interloper down, finding him sleeping with her hunting partner by the riverbank. Seeing him laying there defensless she snapped and attacked. Now he was awake, slightly groggy, but well able to defend himself. But what was a worst betrayal in her eyes was Duo standing to defend HIM!
Raptor Duo doesn't know why Hilde suddenly attacked Heero but he doesn't like it. He doesn't want to have to choose between a prospective mate and his adopted sister. Slowly he advances towards her, keeping his head close to the ground. It's a walk of appeasement, the submissive display of a sibling trying to defuse a deadly situation.
Heero looks at Duo, then at Hilde. He's frozen where he is, unable to move.
Suddenly, Hilde slashes out with her left hand. Raptor Duo staggers. He looks down at his elbow, where a fresh wound is beginning to bleed. Duo sinks down on his knees. He's never, NEVER been struck in anger by Hilde before. He doesn't know what to do.
Then a fall of leaves comes flying into Raptor Duo's face. He sees a blur of hindfeet churning up the sandy riverbank. Hilde is charging Heero!
Duo tries to run to cut her off, but the sand is so soft, it's impossible to accelerate fast, and he stumbles.
Hilde is coming at Heero with her arms flailing. He doesn't notice the dark mass in the river, breaching the surface, gliding toward shore.
Heero turns and starts running away from the river. Hilde tries to follow but slips and skids sideways on the slick mud. Raptor Duo sprints between them. He stops, looking in panic both upstream and down. But then he doesn't know what to do. Hilde gets up and just misses Duo with a swipe of her forepaw.
Out of the corner of his eye, Raptor Duo sees the body shadow of something massive coming out of the riverwater. He gives the alarm call, but Hilde ignores it and begins to charge after Heero. In the next instant, an avalanche of leaves and branches bowls all three raptors over.
The huge red crested head of a male Tyrannosaurs juts out from between two mangrove trees. With a mighty roar the creature slowly begins to use it's considerable mass to break through the surrounding trees.
Hilde screams then is brought down by a piece of flying debrie. She lays stunned her left side twiching as the T-rex strides past her intent on the isolated Raptor Duo who has his back to the river. Duo's jaw opens and he pants noisily eyes contracting and dialating in his panic.
The T-Rex brings it's neck back into a tight S-curce. Muscle groups work against each other --tensing the head and neck and torso. The whole joint-muscle apparatus is a coiled weapon ready to fire and send jaws down and forward.
KAWOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOSH! Raptor Duo is knocked backward. His head goes under the deep murky river water. Tree roots snag his right hand and his body is tossed back towards shore then drawn back into the depths of the river by a surge.
Desperately he tugs at his trapped hand slashing the roots with his claws.
His nostrils break the surface. He spits out brown riverwater and a mouthful of silty mud. His right eye opens just above the surface.
Drops of hot blood spatter the water all around him. He looks around. It's a hideous sight.
Streams of bright red arterial blood are squirting up from the surface. The T-rex has a huge open wound in the thorax that exposes three broken ribs and lacerated viscera. A hindleg, dislocated at the knee, flaps about in unco-ordinated spasams.
A four-yard-long Spineosaurs snout swings viciously to the side, seizing the T-rex leg and spinning the body into a deeper part of the river. The resulting tidalwave is strong enough to toss Raptor Duo out of the water and onto shore dazed and hacking up water.
In shock, Raptor Duo watches with wide eyes as the large super predator splashes after it's victim and then drags it under the water.
Back on shore, the two surviving raptor chicks are huddled next to the stunned Hilde. Of Heero, there is no sign.
Duo slowly gets to his feet and makes his way towards Hilde and gives her a snoot rub and makes grooming motions on the two chicks. His small pack seems in good shape.
Raptor Duo jerks his head up and sniffs. His good mood disappears. He trots through the damage left by the charging T-Rex and looks around.
//There!\\ he says to himself. //There he is!\\
He can see Heero two hundred yards away to the north. He's confused. //Is he afraid? Does he not know that we are fine?\\ He calls to Heero.
He doesn't respond. Duo calls again.
Heero is moving.
He's trotting away from him.
Raptor Duo streatches his muzzle high and makes a single piercing call.
Heero freezes. He turns his head. Maybe he's making a return call, but Raptor Duo can't hear it.
//Maybe that's not him,\\ he thinks. He sniffs and stares and sniffs again. No doubt about it, that's his consorts disstinctive smell.
Heero is standing still looking back at Duo. //This has happened before--he'll come back\\ Raptor Duo thinks.
He detects something else in the air -- the scent of female Utahraptors, a group of strangers camping nearby. Far to the north she can see them, tiny figures making slow body movements.
Raptor Duo is at a loss.
He stands quietly and watches the young male turn and walk quickly north.
Raptor Duo stays there, in the destruction left by the T-rex who tried to kill them all, for five hours. Heero's scent gets fainter and fainter. He's not coming back.