Ranchers

The Hadrosaur herd splashed through the river. Each scaly beast almost eight meters long with heavy hoof-like feet digging into the muddy riverbed. Their crests and horns flushed a low orange, showing a calm and focused herd. Their trumpeting calls echoed for miles across the badlands.

Harrington watched the crossing from atop his horse. Her ruddy face shaded by the brim of her hat. She cracked his bullwhip, urging the beasts forward. They needed to hurry. The next leg of the journey was always the dangerous one.

“Harrington! Harrington!” called another cowboy, Barry McDougal. He rode up fast, clutching his hat.

“What is it…?” This ought to be good.

“We got trouble sir!”

Oh god, now what?

The pair rode away from the herd. Harrington saw Barry draw and begin checking his repeater. She took the clue and began doing the same.

On the crest of a nearby hill stood another cowboy, Rex Walsh. His mount snorted. The horned theropod stood a meter over the heads of the horses. The giant predator panted, its serrated jaws dripping saliva. The horses pulled away from the monster. Its bull-like face snorted, sensing the danger.

“We got trouble,” said Rex, from the saddle on the theropod’s shoulders. He pointed with the barrel of his AK-47.

Over the next rise, across the patchy grasslands, was a collection of dark figures. Huge black scaled Theropods. A pack of almost a dozen apex predators. Each as big as Rex’s own.

Harrington grit her teeth. “Their after the herd.” She kicked her horse into a gallop. “Come on!”

They signaled to the rest of the ranchers the danger.

The pack of monsters split and charged towards the herd.

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