‘Woah!’ said Ryan’s dad. ‘Look at the size of it.’ He stretched his arms out wide. ‘The biggest animal to ever walk the planet’.
It was bigger than Ryan had thought it would be, taking up three rooms, its tail poking into one and its head into another. But his dad was wrong. ‘It’s not the biggest animal ever,’ Ryan said, walking over to read the signs at the Diplodocus’s feet.
‘What was then?’ his dad said.
His dad looked up at the dinosaur’s pelvis, wide as a car. ‘Must’ve been pretty big.’
Ryan walked on to the next sign.
‘Still, no match for a Velociraptor.’ His dad said, digging his fingers like pretend claws into Ryan’s shoulders. ‘That’s the dinosaur you’d be, isn’t it.’
Ryan walked out of his dad’s grip. He noticed wasn’t wearing his wedding ring anymore. ‘No. They were too small,’ said Ryan.
‘Velociraptors. They were only big chickens, really.’
‘So just like you then,’ his dad said. Ryan walked on. His dad didn’t understand. It would take a lot of strength, some courage, to overcome something this big.
‘So which one would you be then? This one?’ his dad asked.
‘No. Probably a T-rex.’
Ryan shrugged. ‘The T-rex looked after their young.’
He moved round to the dinosaur’s front end and took his camera from his bag. He took one more picture and looked through all the ones he had taken that day on the camera’s little display. There were people, all shrunk by the huge skeleton, milling around and taking their own pictures; there was an elderly couple leaning on each other, a family trying to keep their kids in one place; people everywhere, but Ryan’s dad was nowhere to be seen. Ryan put his camera in his rucksack and put it on his back. Ryan walked over to the big, wooden doorway as the steady stream of visitors came and went.
When you think about it, big things fell all the time. One-hundred and fifty million years ago, this giant walked the earth. Hundreds, thousands, millions of them. They dominated every part of the planet for millennia, but then something happened. The Earth was rocked, and the dinosaur’s time was over. In one moment, giants were defeated.
Ryan stood by the door and waited, thinking how smaller things got the more you looked at them.
David Alexander has completed the English & Creative Writing BA at Newman University and begins Bath Spa’s Fiction Writing MA this September. David runs a monthly writing group and also created Newman’s creative writing magazine Newmag. His work can be found in (b)OINK and Ellipsis Zine.