Saturday, 2 February 2013

The School Trip


The dinosaur’s tail swung through the air missing my head by only an inch. It was a diplodocus so no real threat but frightening all the same. School trips had never been this dangerous when I was at school, but that had been before time travel. All I had ever got to see were the bones of long dead dinosaurs in the Natural History Museum.

Travelling around in time did lead to some health and safety issues. There was always one adult to each child and couples were leashed together by a bungee cord which could only be unlocked by the headmaster’s key once we returned to school. The bungee cord meant that the child could wander off but not so far as to ever be in any real danger before the retraction button or elasticity pulled them back.

Problem was Henri, my allocated child, had slipped his shackles and raced off to examine a rather dangerous and foreboding looking cave whilst I had been having a cheeky cigarette behind a boulder. Cigarettes had been banned thirty years ago but I had managed to smuggle some back during the English Literature field trip back to the 1960’s. Henri on the other hand had obviously picked up a few tips from his class trip to see Harry Houdini the week before. The first I knew about his escape was when I was smacked in the side of the head by a funny looking bird that had taken Henri’s place on the other end of the bungee cord. It had tried to fly away and been pulled back a little too sharply. Once I realised what had happened I shot out from behind the boulder to see Henri disappearing into a cave. I was just about to shout out to him when I heard the loudest chewing noise ever. I looked over to the right of the cave to see a T-Rex enjoying his lunch. I needed to get to Henri but alive would be preferable.

I slowly crept along, using trees and bushes as cover and was about three quarters of the way across the divide when the bird attached to me started to sing and fly around the T-Rex’s head. The huge creature dropped the carcass from his mouth and started to bat away at the small bird. Whilst the T-Rex was distracted I decided to make a run for it. I was nearly at the mouth of the cave when suddenly I was pulled off my feet and I started to get dragged backwards. I was being dragged along on my stomach when Henri appeared at the mouth of the cave.

‘Henri, help me.’ I called, panicking, not realising what was causing me to be dragged along.

‘He’s got the cord Miss Simpson. Hang on.’ Henri rushed back into the cave.

Where had he gone? I needed his help and I needed it now. Time travel doesn’t automatically guarantee your safety. It didn’t look as if I was going to make it back from this trip. I twisted round and could see the bird had flown around the T-Rex and the gigantic dinosaur was holding of the cord. He was trying to pull the bird in but was pulling me in instead. He grabbed for the bird and released the cord. I quickly scrabbled backwards towards the mouth of the cave, managing to put a couple of feet more between me and certain doom when the cord tightened again.

‘It’s alright Miss Simpson. I’m here now,’ Henri appeared and rushed to where the cord was locked around my waist. With a few twists and turns or a strange device he had the lock undone and he dragged me into the cave.

‘Thank you so much Henri, but you shouldn’t have been able to undo those locks.’

‘Good job I can isn’t it?’

I was about to scold him over the fact his running off had been the cause of all of this when the alarm on both our watches went off.

I grabbed hold of Henri’s hand ready for transportation.

 ‘Probably just a malfunctioning lock. Good job we stuck together without it,’ I smiled.

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