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Thursday, April 8, 2010

An Unlikely Encounter by John Gilson

It was just another day at the cemetery. The weather was surprisingly pleasant for the middle of August. The humidity was lacking and I could feel a nice cool breeze brush against my body. In case you’re wondering, I wasn’t at the cemetery for the mere pleasure of it – That would make me a creep. The cemetery happens to be my place of work. So, as per usual, I spent the first hour of the morning trimming the grass around tombstones and the perimeter of the expansive Section 16.

The sound of the trimmer blocked out all surrounding noises. I felt at ease and at peace. It wasn’t until I started trimming one particular row of monuments that I noticed something strange.

About ten yards away at the base of one of the tall monuments I saw what appeared to be a long, thick snake. It was freakish. The thing just lay there dormant. It was a very dark green, and nearly black. Turning off the trimmer, I stood in silence, gazing at the strange animal. But then it started moving. It was at that moment that I realized that this thing wasn’t a snake at all, but something of a more immense size. It was a long tail!

Suddenly, the creature raised its body and head above the monument. I couldn’t believe my eyes. It was a Velociraptor!

These animals from the Cretaceous period are supposed to be extinct, but there it stood before my eyes—all six feet of it. It was real. I knew from my own personal research that Velociraptors are animals to be feared. They are voracious carnivores who use their long eight inch talons to shred apart prey. Usually the preferred method of killing is a swift slice of the talons through the abdomen, resulting in the spilling of guts, and an excruciating death. And apparently they know how to open doors. A scary thought indeed. Like many reptiles, the Velociraptor can only spot prey if the prey is foolish enough to be move—they are motion sensitive. So, I stood quietly, and slowly inched away from the scene as the fearsome reptile nibbled at the grass—for digestive purposes, I assume.

I tried to forget about the encounter, but as break came I felt a desperate urge to inform the others of the potential danger that lurked on Section 16. At the lunch table, the first person I met was one of the “Special Care” girls. For those of you who don’t know, the role of the Special Care girl is to look after the graves of customers, who pay extra money, so that their plot can look, well…Extra special. I was going to tell her about the Velociraptor on 16, but then I remembered that the grass the creature was eating just happened to be the grass of a Special Care grave. It’s the tastiest kind of grass in the cemetery. This girl took her job very seriously, and if she would find out that some animal, no matter what its size, was eating her Special Care, she would’ve confronted it without thinking. In essence, she would’ve been dinner. Out of the goodness of my heart, I couldn’t tell her about the raptor.

“Where’s Will Derry!” called out one of my fellow co-workers. “He was supposed to come in this morning, but I haven’t seen him. I wonder where he is.”

Upon hearing those words my mind was filled with dread. Will Derry was a friendly and talkative individual. He would befriend and talk to anyone. From what I understood, he was also into the comic book scene, and just the other day had attended a comic book conference where most of the people were dressed up in the costumes of their favourite superheroes. Perhaps, while on his way to work, Will Derry saw the Velociraptor and believed it to be one of his fellow comic book fans, dressed up as a dinosaur. The thing very well could’ve been a man. I mean, it was like six feet tall, the typical height of a large male. Seeing what he thought to be one of his fellow comrades, Will Derry probably decided to talk to the thing, and in the process was eaten. Maybe that would explain why the Velociraptor appeared a bit bloated when I saw it. Oh my God! Not Will Derry!

At the table I nervously ate the leftovers from the night before. I thought I had to warn everyone else. Everyone’s life could be in danger. But then it finally dawned on me. What the hell is a six feet tall Velociraptor doing roaming the open fields of the cemetery? They’re extinct—They don’t exist. I must’ve forgotten my pill that morning. Sigh!

1 comment:

  1. Hahahahaha! As someone who works in the gardens at the cemetery, I found this story hilarious. I'll definitely be watching out for any peculiar looking reptiles from now on. lol.
    Great story. John!