It was a bright summer morning, as the sun sparkled on the crystal clear waters of the lake.

“I’m sick and tired of all these hand-me-down toys!” exclaimed Din Din’s youngest brother, Don. “ Used books, used stationery, used toys…. Why do I have to make do with used things? Even my blanket is Dave’s!“

Mrs. Dee smiled at her youngest son’s tantrums. It was a familiar story in the dinosaur household.

“These toys belonged to Din Din, Derek and Dave and now they are yours,” Mrs. Dee explained with patience. They are in perfectly good condition. Why do you need new toys?“ She continued as she stirred her chocolate batter on a stove to make a fresh batch of chocolates.

Don stomped out of the cave while his brothers watched his performance.

“What’s happened to Don again?” wondered Din Din aloud.

“He will be fine when his temper has cooled down,” remarked Derek as he continued doing his homework on their dining table.

Dave, nearest in age to Don, was the only one who followed his brother out of the cave.

“Don where are you going?” young Dave panted, catching up with his brother.

“I’m running away from home?” fumed Don.

“Don, please, be reasonable. I am the third brother and I have also always been at the receiving end of used items. But it’s not such a big deal,” Dave tried desperately to convince his emotional younger sibling.

But Don just kept scampering ahead, his rage egging him on.

“No! No one takes me seriously just because I’m the youngest. I need new things too. I will teach everyone a lesson by running away from home. They will miss me and cry when I don’t return!” Don kept yelling and running further away, his breath coming in gasps.

“Don! That is not true. Everyone loves you too. You know we can’t always afford new things. Mom always explains to us that we need to spend on necessities, not luxuries,” Dave said.

“When I need something it’s a luxury?” Don shot back indignantly. “Well, now I won’t ask anything from anyone. I’m running away because I am old enough to take care of myself. I can make my own decisions now; I won’t have to ask anyone’s permission to do anything.”

“It’s not that simple, Don. Running away from home is a very serious step. You are too young and there are dangers out there,” Dave was the voice of sanity as he continued to follow Don blindly. “Don, for heaven’s sake stop!” Dave finally pleaded tearfully. “We are lost. Will you just look around!”

Dave’s urgent tone or his exhaustion made Don finally stop. Don’s little green feet were aching from the long trek and he was wheezing.

He turned around to see his devoted brother Dave behind him, sweaty and weary from scurrying after him.

Then he took a moment to gaze around. They were certainly not in the vicinity of Fruit Park where the dinosaurs lived in their cave homes.

Impetuous Don now felt fear grow in his heart. “Dave, where are we? “ he stammered holding his brother’s arm.

“I have no idea. I was too busy following you,” Dave replied angry and frustrated. “The sun’s setting and I can hardly see what lies ahead.”

Dave and Don sat down on a flat, grey rock to catch their breath and think sensibly.

“Let’s just retrace our steps on the path from where we came,” suggested Don.

“It’s too dark now,” Dave retorted.

“Thanks to you, both of us are lost, starving and cold.”

“I’m sorry, Dave,” mumbled Don bowing his head in shame. The reality check of what he had done in a fit of rage was now sinking in.

“How many times have I told you not to make a fuss over trivial things? When you do that, you lose what you already have,” Dave explained shaking his head morosely.

“You know my temper gets the worse of me,” Don said miserably. “I just can’t think straight. I say things I regret later.”

Suddenly they heard a growling sound from the clump of orange trees behind them. They swung around in horror to see several pairs of golden eyes glinting at them.

“The jackals!” Dave cried in terror.

“What have we here?” a menacing voice cried. “A pair of cute, little dinosaurs! And what brings you here in our territory of Fruit Park?”

But before the two terrified brothers could say anything, the voice snapped, “Take them!”

There was a flurry of movement and three lean golden jackals moved towards Dave and Don stealthily and held them in a vise-like grip, hauling them away, ignoring their screams of terror.

The two squirming, struggling dinosaurs found themselves flung in front of Jacko, the famous leader of the jackals.

“You do know, little dinosaurs, that there has been a treaty between the jackals and dinosaurs. We live in one area of Fruit Park and you in another and coming into our territory without permission is a crime,” Jacko drawled lazily as he lounged on a bed of heather, munching at an apple.

“We…lost our way, Sir,” stammered Dave. “We do apologize. It was too dark to find the path back home. I promise if you guide us we shall leave at once.”

Jacko and the golden jackals around him cackled.

“You want us to let you go, do you?” Jacko raised his brows. “It’s not that simple I’m afraid. You are a long, long way from your caves. Do spend the night here and we will consider this matter in the morning.”

“No, we’d rather not,” blurted Don.

“Our parents will be worried and waiting for us.”

“Well, you should have thought of that when you decided to venture so far from home. Haven’t your parents told you that you are to stay away from us, the vicious, greedy jackals?” Jacko said menacingly, his sharp teeth glinting in the feeble starlight.

“We have been waiting for a dinosaur to stumble accidently into our territory for months,” Jacko continued ominously. “And tonight, the time has finally come!”


(End of part 1)

The Adventures of D'Land
Animated Series

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