Finish That Thought, week 52


The massive 2:00 am explosion jolted the town awake. I heard the cacophony in the street as neighbors threw open windows and stumbled out onto porches. Mister Thompson’s voice rose above the din, demanding to know what was going on, as if being the precinct captain gave him some kind of special authority. Me, I rolled over to go back to sleep. They’d be at my door soon enough, and us time-traveling dinosaur hunters need our rest.

I should’ve known that Mister Thompson wouldn’t be so decent as to let me sleep in until a decent hour. I mean, sure, the transformer which supplied the power to the safety fence had blown up, but the Apatosauruses were kind of slow, and it should be hours before they started causing problems. I let him pound away for long enough to let him know I wasn’t at his beck and call, and then slowly opened the door, taking a sip of coffee as he began spluttering.

“Miss Collins! What is the meaning of…” I didn’t let him finish.

“It’s Doctor Collins, as you very well know, and as you also know, PETD is busy trying to free the dinosaurs again.” I took another sip of coffee and sat down on my foyer bench to put on my boots. I did not invite him in.

“Well, young lady, what are you going to do about it? We hired you – at great expense to the town, I must say – to stop this kind of thing!”

“No, Mister Thompson, you hired me to catch the dinosaurs once they escaped, as the temporal warning system told you would happen. As they haven’t escaped yet, I’m actually not, so to speak, on the clock. But if you’ll be kind enough to get out of my way, I’ll go take a look and see what I can do.”

We walked to the hyperloop station, and I called my contact to find out how bad the damage was. He didn’t answer, as planned, although I didn’t let Mister Thompson, and I carried on my end of the conversation as if he’d given me the run-down and the problems were pretty small. If he’d done his job correctly, however, there would be nothing small about what we were about to see.

The hyperloop glided soundlessly to a stop, and we exited into the tube station for the last time. The tube was in vacuum, and we hadn’t heard anything until we’d stepped out, so the sounds that hit us were staggering. As was the Apatosaur stomping toward us. Mister Thompson turned to me. “Well, Miss, there he is! Catch him!”

I smiled. “I told you, it’s Doctor. And why would I stop him when we worked so hard to let him go?” My Timetransporter beeped. “I really should have given you my full title. Doctor Collins, People for the Ethical Treatment of Dinosaurs. You wanted the zoo, you pulled them out of their time? They’re yours now.” And I vanished.


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