Chapter 0:

The crusher from an ancient golden age


Alberta, Canada, Late Cretaceous, 75 million years ago.

The sun was starting to decline, giving the wild sky an increasingly orange tone. Each passing minute was bringing the day closer to its end. Shadows progressively became darker and more prominent, darkening portions of the great wooded, littoral plains crossed by several rivers.

No bird was singing on this day since this land's feathered creatures hadn't their melodic voice nor their ability to fly: this privilege belonged to featherless volatiles which soared through the sky. There wasn't a single human habitation in sight: only dens, herds, and nests provided shelter on this day seventy-five million years ago.

A huge centrosaurus* herd was crossing the primal grounds of the Late Cretaceous period. While these massive, four-legged, and horned herbivores were making their way through this prehistoric realm, another group of dinosaurs was on the brink of feasting: two-legged, frightening predators, distant cousins, and supposed ancestors of this ancient world's wide known king.

Under the dense foliage of the forest, a terrifying daspletosaurus pack was gathering around the corpse of a slain hypacrosaurus**, a precious prey of this time and age. The duck-billed herbivore dinosaur has met its end by the fangs of a fierce daspletosaurus, a scarred hunter bearing the memories of its countless battles on its greyish green scales. A specimen that paleontologists will name Scar.

The sight of such an intimidating animal was enough to strike fear in its prey's heart. Measuring nine meters long, two and a half meters high, and weighing the same number of metric tons, this hunter was recognizable for its massive skull, contrasting with its short, two-digited forelimbs. Like any daspletosaurus, this carnivore looked very similar to the famous tyrannosaurus rex while being smaller and more slender. Nevertheless, it still was a force to reckon with, thanks to its bone-crushing jaws, its acute sense of smell and hearing, and its eyesight easily rivaling a raptorial bird's.

However, these tyrannosaurids weren't the bloodthirsty killers we humans could think of. On this day, like most of the time, Scar didn't kill more than the needs of its pack, adults and subadults alike.

While its hunting comrades were feasting on the deceased herbivore at their heart's content, the greyish-green king tore a chunk of meat out of its prey and walked away. After it claimed its share, the scarred lord let the other grown-up daspletosauri fight over their share of the kill.

Scar stopped not too far away from the pack's gathering spot. Warned by a couple of chirps from the ground, the adult daspletosaurus looked down and saw two juvenile daspletosauri. One had greyish green scales, just like Scar, while the other had ocher scales. The fierce king lowered its head and gently dropped its piece of meat, letting it fall to the ground. The young dinosaurs swiftly began to eat the flesh brought by their parent.

After witnessing its children feasting, Scar returned to the carcass to sustain itself. However, hunger prevailed over unity among daspletosauri. The violent feeding behavior even constrained some to stay back while suffering bleeding wounds on their snout. Daspletosauri displayed a real pack spirit for hunting, but not for feeding: it was even the opposite.

When they saw it arriving at the prey, the other daspletosauri welcomed Scar with numerous jaw snaps and aggressive growls***. They were assuredly determined to secure their share. It only takes a nourishing source of meat to make daspletosauri pounce at each other. Scar bore the marks of these ruthless battles all over its face.

One of the pack members, a bold young adult, attempted to bite Scar's snout to wound it and force it to retreat. Bad luck for it; Scar has conquered too many of these brawls to let such a cocky youngster submit him. When the striking daspletosaurus went for its snout, the scarred king brutally smashed its upper jaw with its skull. Not allowing it a single second of respite, Scar violently brought down its jaws on its opponent's snout, closing its mouth. Completely unable to break free from Scar's grip despite its attempts, the youngster had no choice but to endure the dominant hunter's rough lesson.

The rebellious dinosaur retreated as soon as Scar opened its jaws once again. Scar returned to the carcass and finally started to feed itself. This time, the fearsome theropod**** wasn't disturbed by its packmates, who seemingly understood its might would make it the victor in a one-on-one confrontation.

But the law of one pack does not necessarily extend to the entire species.
While eating, Scar was interrupted by a low-frequency growling, a sound that he heard thanks to its enhanced earring but also felt vibrating through its body. Only one animal could emit those kinds of sounds: another daspletosaurus.

Scar suddenly straightened and turned its head. That growl came from the spot it returned from earlier, where its children usually rested. The unmatched predator rushed to them as fast as its daspletosaurus legs could make it run. It rapidly arrived and got spotted by the rogue dinosaur, which trespassed the borders of its territory.

It was indeed another daspletosaurus. A one-eyed, black-scaled individual who was abnormally large for its kind: it reached ten meters long and weighed three metric tons.

The trespasser sneaked upon Scar's offspring and was about to devour them, but detecting Scar's scent interrupted it. What started as a prohibited hunt seemed to turn into a territorial feud. Letting out a grim growl toward the scarred king, the ravenous stranger outright showed its defiance. Scar replied by snapping its jaws multiple times in a raw. Its children took advantage of their parent's diversion to hide farther.

The two tyrannosaurids started to walk in a circle, turning around each other, and never letting their sight away. For each step they took, the glare of these two theropods was becoming sharper and more intense, waiting for the perfect opportunity to strike. None of them could let its guard down; a daspletosaurus sometimes needs to land a single bite to make the difference.

Suddenly, the trespasser rushed toward Scar while growling aggressively. It swiftly closed its deadly jaws on the green king's neck, inflicting bloody wounds. Scar deafly moaned in pain while struggling to break free from the fanged cage exerted on its neck. But each movement put Scar's life at even greater risk, deepening the wounds.

Scar began to brutally push its opponent to a nearby tree without managing to free itself from the deadly bite. With only some steps, the king of the land slammed its adversary against the tree trunk. This impact forced the trespasser to free its opponent, opening its jaw because of the pain and the damage. Scar walked back, its neck abundantly bleeding.

The intruder looked at Scar again and took a step to charge a second time. However, it quickly stopped when seeing what was standing behind its rival. This moment of inertia proved fatal for it, as Scar's packmates were charging toward the defying dinosaur. As the black adversary tried to oppose resistance, the resident daspletosauri ripped off one of its two-fingered hands with a single bite, severely injured its left leg, and pierced the scaly skin of its neck. It was its turn to experience the pain and damage of its kin's bone-breaking jaws. However, the imposing trespasser brutally broke free from this collective attack and went for the hidden juveniles it managed to track down. They may have fooled its raptorial eyes, but not its supreme sense of smell.

But shortly after the violent and coordinated attack, Scar charged at the enemy so focused on the children's scent that it had forgotten its presence. Biting the trespasser's neck and thus returning it the favor, the king pushed the black pretender away from its fanged knights. While firmly gripping the rogue daspletosaurus with its jaws and braving its fierce struggles, Scar pushed it to another hell: the river. Scar would end this fight despite its blood loss and deep wounds.

Scar did not let go of the black theropod's neck. It entered the river, condemning its rival to fight it on an unsettling battlefield. The trespassing daspletosaurus triumphed over Scar's grip and attacked it again as soon as it broke free. The two mighty dinosaurs relentlessly traded bites and wounds under the deep river waters. Each landed strike drained their stamina; each time they emerged from the water to take a short breath before biting again, their blood loss increased and brought them closer to exhaustion.

Scar landed a violent bite on its foe's snout before it could open its mouth. Keeping its massive jaws underwater, Scar shook its head to not only maintain the enemy on the verge of drowning but also to deplete it of its remaining stamina. In doing so, Scar sacrificed its respiration and aggravated its blood loss to a non-return point.

The black daspletosaurus began to lose consciousness. With each passing second, Scar let its grip go as its rival progressively ceased to move. The green king couldn't maintain its bite longer; its spirit was leaving it.

The two theropods sank as soon as Scar's jaws lost all of their pressure and might. Their bodies touched the bed of the river. The now lifeless king took its enemy to the grave for the sake of its two offspring.

This brutal prehistoric battle would lay buried and forgotten for what could seem an eternity. Seventy-five million years is the time it will take for their bones to be discovered, analyzed, and interpreted by the new dominant creature of their sacred land: the human being.

However, the death of its body wasn't the end for the terrible Scar.

As soon as its life ended, its soul left not only its corpse but also its land and dimension. It was a phenomenon that no eye could even see.

Scar's soul ended in an infinite, abstract, white dimension. This strange realm was teeming with blue fireball-like entities. As if it wasn't enough, other fireballs suddenly appeared every time. Those flames were, in fact, the manifestation of the souls that ended in this vast space, Scar included. In the core of this dimension where Scar's soul landed, some other souls emerged from a gigantic, blue vortex.

The fierce daspletosaurus became a stray soul in this realm where space and time had no meaning. While seventy-five million years passed on Earth and the golden age of dinosaurs brutally ended, Scar roamed the infinite dimension, witnessing the departure and the appearance of more and more souls at each passing instant.

The daspletosaurus strayed endlessly in a world of eternity and peace, not knowing that some straying souls returned to the living world by a phenomenon that some may call an anomaly. Still, others may qualify this as a miracle - a miracle that banned the term "impossible" from some people's minds...


Author's note

Greetings, everyone!

First of all, thank you so much for reading this prologue! I hope it interests you!

Please feel free to react and comment on this chapter! May it be your suggestions, opinion, and/or constructive criticism; your remarks are welcomed! Since I'm not a native English speaker and writer, I'd be very grateful for your feedback to improve my level in English narrative writing!

Regarding the prologue, I know what you may think by reading this prologue and the categories I attributed to my story: "Why in the world would he put his story into the School category when this prologue is all about a pastime dinosaur battle ?" Don't worry; as irrelevant as it may seem at first glance, it ties in with my school-themed story. You'll see and judge in the following chapters!

 If the story itself of the premise piqued your interest, I'd be grateful if you follow me or simply add the story to your library, so you stay tuned for its progression!



*centrosaurus: a genus of ceratopsian dinosaurs (including the famous triceratops) that roamed Canada and the United States during the Late Cretaceous period. It was part of daspletosaurus' prey.

**hypacrosaurus: a genus of herbivore, duck-billed dinosaurs that lived alongside centrosaurus and daspletosaurus, being one of the latter's prey. 

***The vocalizations of the daspletosauri are based on a relatively recent theory and studies about T. rex ones: rather than roaring like in movies, they likely would have emitted low-frequency growls and closed mouth vocalizations, as seen in modern birds and crocodiles, respectively descendant and closest cousins of the dinosaurs.

****theropods: a group of dinosaurs including all carnivore species (from T. rex to velociraptors) and modern-day birds.

Other Slater
Taylor Victoria
Arashi Sensei