The MILLION-YEAR ELEGIES Twitter launch went really well! I ended up writing a good handful of micro-stories for people as part of one of the launch games – so here they are, for your reading convenience, all gathered in one place.
“Don’t be silly,” said John, walking further into the sunlit brush. “There’s nothing in these woods to be afraid of-” The speed of the pounce, the flash of fur and of unnaturally long fangs, took him by surprise.
(see Michael Mock’s continuation of this story)
The researcher crouched in the shallow water, picking up one of the three-lobed, segmented creatures to crawl on her hand. Its small legs tickled. For this moment alone, the journey had been well worth it.
“Siberian trap climate”
The north was a horror, an ocean of flame. We knew better than to linger there. But when we fled to the south, the air was poison, the seas steaming, the swamps drying up. As if whatever burned there had spread its hellish fingers all across the globe.
“Plague of Justinian”
The bodies lay stacked in the Byzantine thoroughfare, too many for respectful rites to be given in time. In the alleyways, little eyes gleamed in the shadows, the creatures awaiting their meal.
“Saturday morning Allosaurus”
They brought the creature out on the lawn as a weekend entertainment, its huge jaws muzzled, its red-brown scales painted in cheery, multicolor patterns. You could almost forget that it was a killer – unless, of course, you looked into its hungry eyes.
“Really large birds”
The Diatryma stood proud in the green of the plateau, its feathers ruffling as it screeched a high-pitched call into the air. Its gaze locked with ours for a single moment, and then it started toward us, and we ran.
“From the deep…”
There was no warning on that placid sea, no suspicious fin or darkening of the water to tell us what was coming. Only the sudden heave and snap of two jaws, larger around than our little boat, and then darkness.
The creatures nudged each other playfully with their armored noses – almost wrestling, as they milled and ate their fill amid the ferns.
The park put the visitors in wetsuits, after signing countless waivers, and showed them where to grip the harnesses that attached to the vast beasts. They swam free through the waves, faster than the kayaks trailing after them, snapping at small fish as they went.
“Terror Bird rampage”
The great claws tearing the earth underneath it, the snapping of the massive beak; it was all we could to just to flee down the hill, with the Terror Bird close on our heels.