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THE LAND BEFORE TIME XXI: HUNTER VALLEY  May 2022 (Blue Ray)


CHARACTERS



Cheramie (OC) Female Dakotaraptor (Fast Biter /Sharptooth) Alignment: Good

Thorn (OC) Male Dakotaraptor (Fast Biter /Sharptooth) Alignment: Good

Flavia (OC) Female Dakotaraptor (Fast Biter /Sharptooth) Alignment: Good

Lorenzo (OC) Male Dakotaraptor (Fast Biter /Sharptooth) Alignment: Good

Farrell (OC) Male Dakotaraptor (Fast Biter/Sharptooth) Alignment: Good

Leafie (OC) Female Ziapelta (Club Tail/ Flattooth) Alignment: Good

Littlefoot Male Apatosaurus (Longneck /Flattooth) Alignment: Good

Cera Female Triceratops (Threehorn / Flattooth) Alignment: Good

Ducky Female Saurolphus (Swimmer /Flattooth) Alignment: Good

Petrie Male Pteranodon (Flyer/Flattooth) Alignment: Good

Spike Male Stegosaurus (Spiketail/ Flattooth) Alignment: Good

Guido Male Microraptor gui (Glider/Sharptoothish) Alignment: Good

Ptero (OC) Male Pterodactylus/Pteranodon Hybrid (Flyer + Sharp Beak/Flattooth + Sharptooth) Alignment: Good

Grandpa Longneck Male Apatosaurus (Longneck/ Flattooth) Alignment: Good

Grandma Longneck Female Apatosaurus (Longneck/ Flattooth) Alignment: Good

Dakota (OC) Male Dakotaraptor (Fast Biter/Sharptooth) Alignment: Bad

Xavier (OC) Male Dakotaraptor (Fast Biter/Sharptooth) Alignment: Bad

Tarborsaurus Pack Leader (OC)  Male Tarbosaurus (Two Claw/Sharptooth) Alignment:  Bad

Tarbosaurus Pack (OCs) Mixed Tarbosaurus (Two Claw/Sharptooth) Alignment: Bad

In the Great Valley, Littlefoot the Longneck watched as Chomper the newly hatched Sharptooth left, heading out the hole that his group had accidentally made the night before. The adults were about to close the wall, so Littlefoot needed to get Chomper going with his parents. "Goodbye Chomper. I hope we meet again." said Littlefoot.

"Goodbye Chomper." said Cera, Ducky, Petrie, and Spike. They watched the young Sharptooth go. They would indeed meet Chomper again.

Five Flatteeth had taken care of a Sharptooth. You have probably heard that story in The Land Before Time II: Great Valley Adventure. But what you probably didn't know was that something similar happened, only in reverse. That occurred about a week later in a place called Hunter Valley. It was filled with Sharpteeth, Fast Biters to be more precise. Hunter Valley was not too far from the Great Valley, one of its entrances through a canyon and through a supposedly haunted cave.

Five young Fast Biters, who were each a year old, wandered around outside of Hunter Valley. Hunter Valley was where their pack lived.

Cheramie had red eyes and was orange and brown. Her friend Lorenzo had yellow eyes and was red and brown. Flavia and Thorn both had orange eyes. They both were orange and red, though Thorn was a darker shade of orange and red than Flavia. Farrell had hazel eyes and was orange and yellow.

Lorenzo was optimistic and brave. Thorn was kind enough, though he could be really stubborn and could sometimes be rude. His sister Flavia was gentler than him and really outgoing. Cheramie was also outgoing and gentle and also somewhat of a coward. Farrell was more reserved, but good-natured.

I'm going to get those Buzzers and get some dinner! said Thorn.

Last time you tried to take on loads of Stinging Buzzers, you got stung really bad. laughed Cheramie.

They decided to wander outside of Hunter Valley. Being Sharpteeth, they did not have to worry as much about being in the Mysterious Beyond as did Flattooth children. They noticed some silver lizards. Dinner! yelled Farrell excitedly. They chased after the lizards.

The group came upon a huge rockslide. They saw an Egg Stealer about to grab an egg that had apparently survived it. The Struthiomimus was licking his lips and about to crack open the egg. The Egg Stealer turned and saw them, muttered "Sharpteeth!", and took off faster than bad guys when Spiderman shows up. The Dakotaraptors let the lizards escape and focused their attention on the egg instead.

Looks like we saved this one. That Egg Stealer was about to eat it. said Farrell. Yeah, well, it's not our egg. It's not our responsibility. said Thorn. Yeah, like we could have an egg at our age. laughed Thorn's sister Cheramie. What should we do with it? asked Flavia. Make an omelet. joked Thorn. We should hatch it. It will die out here. said Lorenzo. They stared at the green egg, wondering what to do with it.

The five children did not know what type of dinosaur the egg held. They guessed that the parents must have perished, for they could see footprints that had tried to run from the rockslide. The rocks were too big to move off the bodies to find out what type they were.

After much pestering from Lorenzo, they had agreed to take the egg. They had decided not to tell their parents. The less their parents knew, the better, they figured. This time, they were very right!

How are we going to get it into Hunter Valley? asked Cheramie.

I've got an idea. We can use these. suggested Thorn, indicating a bunch of twigs and leaves that he'd found nearby.

The group carried the pretty green egg on a bed of leaves that was supported by the twigs. It took them a good while to get into Hunter Valley. They didn't want their parents to nose around the egg and take away their new discovery. They put it in a gorge near a river. They placed it into a nest that they had made out of reeds along the river.

They all stood around the egg, wondering what it could be. Think it's a Sharp Beak? asked Flavia. Seems kind of big to be that. said Farrell. Maybe it's a Large Claw. said Cheramie. Maybe it's a Belly Dragger. said Thorn. Perhaps it's a Sail-back.suggested Farrell. Seems a bit small to be that. countered Flavia. Maybe it's a Two-claw. suggested Lorenzo. They argued for a while about what creature the egg had in it.

We will be good parents to it, whatever it is. said Lorenzo finally, bringing an end to the argument as to what it was. But we're just kids. said Thorn. Well, we can be good parents, can't we? I mean, it can't be anything we can't handle. said Lorenzo.

They sat by their egg. Eventually, it began to hatch. I wonder what it is. said Lorenzo excitedly. I hope it's not anything dangerous.said Flavia uneasily.Don't be such a Scaredy Egg. You worry too much Flavia. laughed Thorn. Eventually, the baby broke free of its shell. They all stared at it. It wasn't what any of them were expecting. It wasn't a Belly Dragger, a Large Claw, Two-Claw, Sailback, or a Sharp Beak, though. It wasn't even a Sharptooth for that matter! It was a Clubtail!

It was a girl. She was green and had a tiny club on her tail. She had pink eyes and looked really cute. She smiled at them innocently. She yawned, revealing that she didn't have any fangs, but instead had flat teeth.

It's a…..a….Flattooth! said Flavia. They sat, staring at the Clubtail, who didn't yet realize what danger she could be in. What do we do? whispered Cheramie. Eat it?suggested Thorn, licking his lips and staring hungrily at the young Clubtail. No! She's just a baby! We can't do that! protested Lorenzo.Come on, I'm starving here! We've got a Flattooth and those are edible!whined Thorn. You think with your stomach Thorn! Go get some hoppers!snapped his sister.

We'd better get it before Dad does. He'll eat her right on the spot. said Thorn. She does smell good. commented Cheramie, sniffing the baby, who continued to stare at them innocently. You can have half of her. said Thorn. I don't know, she looks so cute! remarked Farrell hesitantly. Thorn licked the baby. The baby, unaware that he was thinking of harming her, licked him back. The others laughed. Smart-aleck kid! grumbled Thorn. I think she likes you.laughed Cheramie. I think I'm going to like her. said Thorn, licking his lips.

Lorenzo stared at the baby Clubtail. He thought she seemed so sweet and innocent. Her pink eyes stared into his yellow ones. He felt that he couldn't hurt her, even if she was edible. She was too cute. Don't worry girl. We're not going to hurt you. he said gently.

Thorn, however, had a different idea.  If we get her, Mom and Dad will be pleased that we got a Flattooth all on our own.  he exclaimed happily.  He jumped at the baby, trying to eat her.  Lorenzo, deciding to have mercy on the Club Tail, moved the baby aside with one claw, and pushed Thorn’s tail where the baby had been with the other.  Thorn bit himself in the tail.  Yow! he yelled, wincing in pain.

Serves you right! snapped Lorenzo. 

That was my dinner! snarled Thorn.  They got into a heated argument about what to do with their new Clubtail. They finally agreed that harming a baby was wrong. Also, they soon realized that they had to keep the baby away from their parents, who didn't share their views on not eating kids.

The baby suddenly moved around looking for food. She fell and hit her head, as she was bad at walking. She did this a few times. Silly kid!commented Thorn. Come on girl, do like I do. said Lorenzo gently. The baby copied him and soon learned how to walk properly. The baby went and ate a tiny bit of grass. I think our new baby is hungry. said Flavia. She is not the only one!grumbled Thorn. Thorn, don't you dare!snapped Flavia. Come on girl, you need to hide. said Lorenzo. He tried to feed the kid insects, but the baby didn't want any. Crazy kid doesn't want bugs. What's wrong with her? grumbled Thorn. Eventually, Lorenzo brought the Clubtail to some grass, which she started to eat. She then ate leaves. She really liked those. At least we have the eating problem taken care of. said Thorn. At least for her anyway…. Thorn grumbled. Cheramie gave him some dragon flies, which he ate hungrily. The baby, meanwhile, continued to eat many leaves. She likes leaves a lot. Let's call her Leafie. suggested Lorenzo.

If our parents find Leafie, she's a goner. said Cheramie. We will need a plan to hide her. remarked Farrell. I'll think of something. replied Lorenzo.

Lorenzo, time for dinner! called Lorenzo's mother. Lorenzo turned pale.

Quick, hide Leafie in those smelly plants over there. It will mask her smell. If they find her, she'll 'be' dinner! Lorenzo whispered to the others. The others moved Leafie across a shallow point in the river and out of sight.

Lorenzo's mother came into sight. She was silver and brown colored and had dark red eyes. Who were you talking to? And why do I smell Clubtail? she asked him.

I was with my friends. They went off to play rock throwing. We, er, caught a Clubtail outside of Hunter Valley. I, um, burped. We had Clubtail for dinner. That's why you smell Clubtail. Lorenzo lied.

Well done Lorenzo on getting a Clubtail. I guess you won't be hungry for dinner. she replied.

Nope. All full. he lied. I need to hurry. I'm supposed to join my friends. I don't want them starting without me.

Have fun. said his mother, walking away. As soon as she left, he grabbed some fish and walked off with them, planning to eat them later. He had to see that Leafie was safe first.

He came to the others. She's in here. whispered Flavia to him. Lorenzo stuck his head into the cluster of foul smelling plants. He didn't like the smell, but he tried his best to ignore it.

Don't worry girl, we will keep you safe. he promised her. He returned to the others.

Oh, by the way, we're going to have to be eating these. Mom thinks that we ate Clubtail for dinner and we have to convince her of the tale. She smelled Leafie earlier. Lorenzo whispered to the others, giving them some of the fish.

They hid Leafie from their parents as time went by. They made sure that she didn't wander out of where they had kept her. While the other Fast Biter children ran around and played, they spent most of their time making sure that Leafie wasn't in any danger. If they lost her, she would almost certainly end up a meal.

CHAPTER ONE: GOING INTO THE MYSTERIOUS BEYOND


Thirteen years later, Littlefoot, Cera, Ducky, Petrie, Spike, Ptero, and Guido were in the Great Valley together. Ptero had been adopted by Petrie's family after the death of his evil mother. He was half-Sharptooth and half-Flattooth. Guido, meanwhile, was a Glider. He was kind of dorky but was pleasant to be around.

The group of them had agreed to go to the Desert Oasis, an area that was surrounded by many canyons and was in the dessert area of the Mysterious Beyond between the Great Valley and the Land of Mists. It wasn't too far out. It had a special kind of Tree Sweet that the Great Valley didn't have. Grandpa Longneck had gotten them some a while back and they loved it and wanted to get some for themselves.

Littlefoot realized that today was the 13th anniversary to the day that they had found Chomper. They didn't know what he was like now and could only hope for the best. It had been exactly 13 cold times ago that he and his four main friends had found the young Sharptooth and hatched him.

Chomper was out in the Mysterious Beyond in an area that, over the last several cold times, had seen an increase in dangerous Sharpteeth. As Chomper appeared to be content to be in that area, it seemed too risky to go visit him for his thirteenth Hatch Day.

"Littlefoot, are you sure you want to go out there? You could be hurt by Sharpteeth." asked Grandma Longneck.

"I'm now old enough to go out there on my own. You said I could after my 18th Hatch Day." said Littlefoot. He didn't come of age till his 25th Hatch Day, but finally the grown-ups were treating him more grown up.

"Ok, be safe." said Grandpa Longneck.

She watched them leave.  “Think they’ll be safe?” she asked Grandpa Longneck.

“They are now old enough to head out there on their own for the day.  We promised them, remember?” Grandpa Longneck reminded her.

“Yes dear, but I still worry about them.” replied Grandma Longneck.

“I do too, but I have to let them grow up.” said Grandpa Longneck.   The two nodded. 

“I love you.” said Grandma Longneck to him.  She smiled and kissed her. 

“I love you too.” he replied. 

The group of teens, meanwhile, left the Great Valley and went out into the Mysterious Beyond. It was about midday by this point and it was muggy. The group had drank water before leaving so that they wouldn't be thirsty in the desert.

"I'm glad the grownups let us go on our own out here finally. It's great to not be treated like a baby." Cera commented.

"I hope we don't meet any Sharpteeth. It would be just our luck." said Guido.

"Well, we do have one guard against that." said Ptero, flying beside Guido.

"What?" asked Guido.

"I can speak Sharptooth. I can misdirect them." answered Ptero.

"I really hope we do not meet any. Oh no, no, no." said Ducky.

"We're safer together than apart. Sharpteeth love to go for lone targets." said Ptero, who had seen that firsthand when he had lived with Sharp Beaks for years.

They went out and traveled without hassle for a few hours. About an hour from the Desert Oasis, however, they ran into a bit of trouble. Ptero saw it first. "Two Claws." he whispered.

It was a Tarborsaurus Pack. They began sniffing for the kids. "Hide, I'll misdirect them." Ptero told the others. The group moved behind some boulders. They hoped Ptero could mislead the Sharpteeth as they were quite vulnerable out here in the desert.

Were you looking for a bunch of Flatteeth? Ptero asked them in Sharptooth.

Yes, I smell Longneck, Swimmer, Threehorn, Spiketail, Flyer, and Glider. said the Tarborsaurus leader, which was reddish-orange colored and had scary yellow eyes. What do you know about it, Sharp Beak? he asked rather contemptuously. Ptero realized that he was for pack segregation and since Ptero wasn't a Two Claw, the leader thought him inferior.

I saw them head that way. They were here a few minutes ago. You might be able to catch them. lied Ptero, pointing away from where Littlefoot and his friends were hiding.

Come on. Let's get ourselves a snack. said the Tarborsaurus leader to his pack. They left.

"That should deal with them." said Ptero.

"Thanks Ptero." said the group.

"I get extra Tree Sweets for that." replied Ptero. The group laughed.

Sometime later, they came to the Desert Oasis. They had their fill of the special Tree Sweets. Indeed, they probably had too much. They were feeling a bit sleepy. It was now getting later in the day.

"Let's go back. We promised to be back by dark." said Littlefoot. Overheard, the sun got blocked out by clouds.

"At least it is cooler." said Cera, who had gotten really hot and sweaty from her travels to the Desert Oasis.

The wind picked up. "I hope this doesn't stay like this long. I prefer less wind when I fly." Guido commented.

As they left, more and more clouds came. The clouds were at first light grey, but soon turned darker. They didn't know it yet, but the weather was going to turn for the worse, as was their luck.

CHAPTER TWO: LEAFIE IN HUNTER VALLEY


Leafie, meanwhile, was hiding in one of the "Stinky Places", as her friends called it, in Hunter Valley. Why she had to hide here, she was never told. She only was told that her very life depended on it. She was awfully bored. And the place didn't smell that great either. It had been, though she wasn't told, to mask her smell from the Sharpteeth.

Her friends had sure kept her hiding a lot. True, she had been let out at night to go eat and explore parts of Hunter Valley. She had even played rock toss with her friends, using her tail to bop rocks. She also enjoyed relaxing in mud baths. However, they never let her do this during the day. She had to stay in here all day. Normally she slept all day, as she had nothing to do anyway.

She woke up as she felt the wind hit her. She wondered if it was her friends coming to get her, but found that it wasn't. The leaves were blowing in the wind. Some went to her and she ate them. She saw that it wasn't night at all, but late afternoon. Her friends would get her after dark, so there was little point in going back to bed. Anyway, it would be hard to sleep with leaves hitting her from being blown by the wind. At least she got something to eat. Normally, she had to wait till night to eat.

She wondered why she always had to stay in here. Her friends got to go out all day. Why couldn't she?

"What could be out there?

Why am I not allowed to go anywhere?" she sang.

She noticed Dakotaraptors and Utahraptors in the distance. She stared at them. "What danger could they be?

Why is it all such a mystery?" she sang.

"Oh hiding all the time is such a pain!

If I keep having to do this much longer, I know I'll go insane!" she sang in an annoyed tone.

"What could be out there?

Why am I not allowed to go anywhere?

There is so much in the world to see.

Why is it all kept from me?" she sang.

"Oh why in all these cold times, cannot I find

any other member of my kind?

I am never allowed to go explore.

My life is a total bore.

I don't know if I can take much more." she sang.

"What could be out there?

Why am I not allowed to go anywhere?

Could today be the day

that my limitations would go away?" she sang, finishing her song.

She, out of frustration, moved out of her hiding spot. It couldn't hurt to explore out there for just part of one day, could it?

"It doesn't seem so bad out here. I mean, it's not like it's going to kill me, now is it?" laughed Leafie.

CHAPTER THREE: DAKOTA


A short while later, Dakota the Fast Biter, an enemy of Lorenzo’s, sniffed the air.   Club Tail! he said.  His hungry yellow eyes looked around, searching for the meal that he sought.  He headed toward a stream, smelling the Club Tail.  He’d taken down Club Tails before.  How this one had managed to get so far into Hunter Valley undetected by the adults, Dakota didn’t know.  

Leafie, who had been eating green food from in the water, noticed him coming near her.  She wondered what to do, for she had been told to avoid anyone but her friends.  She had decided to hide in the water.  However, before she could run, his yellow eyes stared right into her pink ones.  He’d found her!

 He came toward her, grinning.  Ah, an afternoon snack! said Dakota, licking his lips.  He thought the Club Tail seemed rather stupid.  She didn’t seem to be putting up a fight.  This one should make an easy meal.  he thought.

 I don't see leaves anywhere.  said Leafie, who didn't realize what he had meant.  My name is Leafie by the way.  Who are you?  She had never spoken to anyone before, save her friends.  She had seen the other Fast Biters before, but only at a distance and her friends had said not to try and talk to them.  She didn’t know why they asked this of her, but she had always obeyed.  However, this one, she thought, was talking to her; thus, she had replied to Dakota.

Dakota had thought her unable to understand him and had been on the verge of attacking her.  Her ability to speak Sharptooth baffled him and he halted.  My name is Dakota.  he replied.  Where did you learn to talk?  I’ve never seen a talking Flattooth before. he said incredulously.

My friends.  answered Leafie.  And what’s a Flattooth?  she asked. 

Friends? Flatteeth don't have friends. scoffed Dakota.  The silver and blue Dakotaraptor moved closer to her.  His curiosity was keeping him from making her into his lunch right then and there.  Leafie figured he was the same type as her friends, as he looked similar.  However, as she trusted them, she falsely assumed that he was safe too.   She had never heard the word Flattooth before.  

As for Flattooth, it means you're not a Sharptooth. You don't eat meat. You eat plants. replied Dakota. 

Of course I don’t eat meat.  Never tried it to be honest.  Don’t think my teeth can handle it.   said Leafie.

Everyone around here does, Club Tail;  they eat your kind of meat. laughed Dakota.  This was a total shock to her.  Her friends had never told her what they ate.  Fear began to rise in her.  She knew her friends lived in Hunter Valley. 

Me?! gasped Leafie.

Yes.  I don’t know what friends you have, but they aren’t here now.  taunted Dakota.

I am friends with Lorenzo, Cheramie, Flavia, Thorn, and Farrell.   We’ve been friends for so many cold times. said Leafie, who didn’t realize that she was in mortal danger. 

Many cold times?   How could that be?  Dakota thought.  She is such a liar!  Dakota laughed hard.  Kid, they are Sharpteeth.  They eat your kind.

No, that’s not true.  It can’t be!  They couldn’t!  They wouldn’t! gasped Leafie in horror.  She didn’t want to believe it about her friends. 

Yes, perhaps they are planning to keep you around till you get nice and fat.  Then they will have flayed Club Tail. he laughed.

No.  They couldn’t!  They wouldn’t! said Leafie, her voice near hysteria.  She wondered if he was right.  They had kept her hidden her whole life.  She never had been told why.  Was this the reason?  Was she meant to become a feast for them someday?

Yes, silly Flattooth.  I’ve seen your pals eat dead Flatteeth before.  And they’ve gotten live ones too.   answered Dakota.

No.  It can’t be.  You’re lying!  cried Leafie in fright. 

It matters little.  I’m not friends with Lorenzo.  said Dakota, little pity in his eyes.  He moved forward, about to pounce on her. 

What are you going to do?  asked Leafie, who didn’t yet realize what he intended.

Hold still for a little while longer and you’ll find out my dear.  laughed Dakota. 

She would have died right then had not her friends arrived, for they had been coming her way and had ran, hearing voices.  As Dakota moved to attack her, Lorenzo leapt into the way, knocking him over. 

You, get away from her!  he yelled.

Ah, Lorenzo, I see you've been hiding a Flattooth in Hunter Valley. said Dakota, getting up and turning to glare at Lorenzo and the others.

Are you guys going to eat me? asked Leafie. She backed away from the lot of them, feeling betrayed. Were her friends going to eat her after all of these cold times of being friends? 

You’re our friend. We're not going to eat you.  said Cheramie.

 They've kept me hidden. I've never come out.  said Leafie to Dakota.

 Clever move of theirs. If you had, you'd have been in one of our stomachs.  said Dakota.  Leafie gasped.  They had been trying to protect her.  She felt foolish for doubting them. 

Dakota, please don't tell! begged Cheramie.

 Who says I'll tell?  said Dakota.

Thank you Dakota. said Lorenzo. He thought maybe Dakota, whom he'd had quite a few tussles with, and, whom also wanted Flavia as his girlfriend, had changed for the better. 

I'll just have a little snack.  said Dakota, sneering. The others all gasped.

Dakota, please! begged Leafie.

 A Flattooth has no place among a pack. Except as the main course. said Dakota, licking his lips. He leapt at Leafie, his mouth open. She moved aside and his fangs snapped exactly where her neck had been.  She was terrified.

 Dakota, don’t eat me!  Leafie begged.

 Tell you what, I’ll get it over with quickly!  he laughed.

  Lorenzo and Thorn tackled Dakota.  Don't hurt her!  said Thorn.

 Come on guys! I'm hungry!  snarled Dakota. He pushed them away.  Time for a meal! said Dakota. He again leapt at Leafie. This time, Farrell tackled him.

 Run Leafie! said Farrell.  Leafie stayed put, not sure what to do.  Dakota again broke free. 

All of this waiting has increased my appetite. said Dakota. He cornered Leafie.  End of the line Flattooth. 

Dakota, please, don’t eat me!  Let me go!  she pleaded.

The only place you’re going is the inside of my stomach!  Bye bye Club Tail!  he said.  He leapt at her, his claws raised, aiming to kill.   Leafie, in her fright, struck him with her tail. He went flying and landed in a heap. He was hurt, but alive. She had knocked the wind out of him. He got up, painfully. He didn't want to get hurt more at the moment. However, he snarled and stared at the others.  I'd suggest you eat your Flattooth friend now. When the pack gets here, it'll be a rather painful end for her with all of them wanting to share her.  laughed Dakota. He ran off. The others stood there, horrified.

We've got to stop him! said Cheramie.

He's already got a head start. And he might come back for Leafie.  said Flavia. Leafie stood there, horrified and shocked. I'm not like you guys, am I? I'm different. You're supposed to eat my kind.   You have eaten Flatteeth like me.  Dakota said he saw you.  she said, now afraid of those she had trusted for years.

Leafie, it’s what we were born as.   However, you changed us.  The ones we got were either dead or others had gotten them and they would have died anyway even if we hadn’t done it.  We had to act convincing.  They think we are bad hunters but don’t suspect that we are friendly toward Flatteeth.  said Lorenzo.

Where did you get me from? she asked.

Your parents and all of your siblings died in a rock slide many cold times ago. We've been taking care of you, as big a risk as it was. But we need to hide. I cannot let all of those cold times go to waste. There are places to hide in Hunter Valley. Some we haven't let you go near as it's risky. However, it's getting dark. said Lorenzo.   A storm is coming in.  We’d better get moving.  It's your best chance. But, beware, if the pack shows up, they can smell you. I'm just hoping Dakota won't realize we're going to the Dark Cave.  said Thorn.

 The Dark Cave? asked Leafie.

It's a really creepy cave. Some think it's haunted. said Lorenzo.

 I don't know about this. said Leafie uneasily.

  Look, Leafie, you have two choices: go to the Dark Cave, or wait for the pack to find us here, overcome us, and eat you.  said Cheramie. Leafie agreed, for her very life was in danger.

The six teenagers headed toward the Dark Cave. They hoped that they didn't meet the pack. They didn't want to have to fight their own friends and family.

CHAPTER FOUR: THE STORM


Overhead in the Mysterious Beyond, meanwhile, the sky was overcast and getting darker. It was getting later in the afternoon but this darkness was due to the coming storm. "I fear sky water is going to fall soon." grumbled Cera. They hoped not. They didn't like getting soaked. They were on their way back to the Great Valley.

"A little water will not hurt you. It will not. It will not." said Ducky.

"We no Swimmers like you! It annoying to us!" said Petrie.

It began to rain. "Just great!" moaned Cera.

"At least we aren't being chased by Sharpteeth." said Guido, trying to remain optimistic.

However, he'd spoken too soon. They suddenly heard something coming after them, something with loud thundering footsteps. It was the Tarborsaurus pack coming back. They were NOT happy. The kids tried to hide again, but this time, they couldn't find as good of a spot. They hoped Ptero could dupe them again.

You lied. There were no Flatteeth! shouted the pack leader angrily at Ptero.

Yes there were. Perhaps you should check again. replied Ptero.

The Tarborsaurus leader sniffed the air. I smell them around here.

Yeah, they were here earlier. That's why you smell them. Ptero lied.

No, I don't think so. I see them over there. said another Tarborsaurus, pointing at the kids.

Wait, no, that's um, not Flatteeth, that's, er, those things you see in the desert when it gets really hot. You know, things that aren't really there. said Ptero nervously. The Flatteeth and Guido took off. Several Tarborsauruses snarled angrily.

Well, it was nice chatting with you, but I've got to be flying off. Ptero said nervously to the pack leader. He flew off.

Why you little…..! snarled the pack leader at Ptero in fury. SNAP! he snapped his fangs at Ptero. SNAP! SNAP! SNAP! SNAP! Ptero narrowly dodged him many times.

No need to get snappy with me. Ptero smarted off.

You smart-aleck little brat! grumbled the pack leader.

Better than a dumb-aleck. Ptero said, this time dodging a swipe from the leader's claws.

SPLASH! SPLASH! SPLASH! SPLASH! SPLASH! It began to rain hard. The Sharpteeth were still after them. WHOOSH! WHOOSH! The wind really picked up. It was starting to blow Petrie, Guido, and Ptero around. "Me no like this!" whined Petrie. KABOOM! KABOOM! KABOOM! Lightning flashed in the sky.

"This bad flying weather!" said Petrie.

"Still safer in the air." said Guido.

Meanwhile, Flavia, Lorenzo, Thorn, Farrell, Cheramie, and Leafie tiptoed through Hunter Valley. Leafie, who had been hidden most of her life, didn't know where she was going. They heard someone coming. Leafie quickly hid. Luckily she had hidden in mud. And even more luckily, her friends had the sense to put leaves over her head.

It was Xavier, the pack leader. There is a storm going on. Some trees are being blown over. You kids should take cover. he said in Sharptooth.

We are quite capable of taking care of ourselves. grumbled Thorn.

ROOOOARRR! Xavier advanced forward. I don't need any lip from you young man! he snarled.

Sorry sir. apologized Thorn.

Dakota has a most interesting story. He says that you are hiding a Flattooth. said Xavier.

Dakota is a fibber and just likes your attention! lied Lorenzo.

Xavier sniffed the air. I do smell a Clubtail! he said, continuing to sniff. He might not be able to smell exactly where Leafie was, but he might find her if he stayed around long enough.

Oh, we had Clubtail for dinner. lied Flavia quickly.

Most delicious. Pity you couldn't have had some. added Farrell.

Dakota was just jealous that we didn't give him any and so he made that whole story up. said Cheramie in annoyance.

Well, be sure that you get to shelter soon. I don't like the looks of this storm. said Xavier. He left.

When they were sure he was truly gone, Leafie came out.

My life is in danger here every moment that I stay. I need to go somewhere else, don't I? she said. She had always felt that ever since learning the truth. They nodded.

The wind was indeed getting bad. They headed toward the Dark Cave. They were nervous about going in. However, if Leafie got injured out here in the open, she'd be a meal faster than Ozzy moving when heading toward a huge unguarded nesting ground. They headed inside. The place sounded eerie. The walls made the place echo, and wind going through the cave made it sound as though evil spirits were in the place.

Meanwhile, in the Mysterious Beyond, the Sharpteeth were getting closer. Cera jabbed one in the toe with one of her two horns. The Sharptooth fell over and two others tripped over him like the Three Stooges. Littlefoot and his friends laughed.

However, more Sharpteeth were coming. It looked bad. But then...WHOOSH! WHOOSH! WHOOSH! WHOOSH! A funnel cloud appeared. "It's a Sky Twirly! Run!" cried Littlefoot in horror.

The Sharpteeth were getting closer. And so was the Sky Twirly. SWOOSH! WHOOSH! The wind was really picking up. SPLASH! SPLASH! SPLASH! SPLASH! The rain was causing it to be hard to see. It was quite dark out now due to all the clouds.

"The Sharpteeth won't be able to find us in this!" said Cera.

"I hope that's the case!" said Guido.

"Sharpteeth can smell us even if they can't see us. Let's hope that this Sky Water washes away our smells." said Ptero.

The Sharpteeth were getting nearer. It looked bad. Then the Sky Twirly came. It narrowly missed the Sharpteeth. The Sharpteeth got thrown by the winds all the same. Littlefoot and his friends hoped that the Sharpteeth were killed. Then, however, the Sky Twirly went their way. "Oh no!" they cried, their mouths open in horror.

They were able to move aside. However, rocks and trees were thrown everywhere. They ran as fast as they could down a path and into a canyon. They had never gone this way before. Behind them, the Sky Twirly had caused the canyon to close by a rock slide. They hoped that there was another way out or else they, minus Petrie, Ptero, and Guido, might die of hunger in here.

The Sky Twirly didn't go into the canyon, but the winds intensified around them. SWOOOOOOOOOOOOOOSSSSSSHHHH! The winds reverberated across the canyon walls and struck rocks. The group headed into a cave. As they entered, rocks hit them and they soon fell a short distance into the cave. They blacked out.

Outside, the weather turned for the better and the sky soon cleared. Around though, there was a mess of debris that blocked a lot of the canyon. Also, out in the Mysterious Beyond, the Sharpteeth got up. They were a bit bruised but otherwise unharmed. And they were determined to get the teens for a meal. They sniffed the air eagerly. They couldn't get into the canyon but they weren't about to give up.

Find them!  I want them to pay for showing us up!  said the pack leader to his group.    They sniffed the air, trying to find another way to get to Littlefoot and his friends.

CHAPTER FIVE: THE DARK CAVE


Meanwhile, in the Great Valley, Grandpa Longneck looked at his wife.

"I do not like the looks of that storm. The kids were out there in it." he said.

"They are older now dear. We have to trust them." his wife replied.

"I hope they are ok." he said.

"I'm sure they are." replied Grandma Longneck.

Meanwhile, in Hunter Valley, Leafie and her friends headed further into the cave. The wind from the storm had made a lot of noise. I do not like it in here. griped Leafie, moving further into the Dark Cave.

Better than the stomach of a Sharptooth. Lorenzo said.

Leafie was very nervous. The wind whistled through the cave. Leafie kept wondering if it was a Fast Biter coming to make a meal of her. Though she knew her friends cared for her, she had a nasty feeling that the rest of Hunter Valley would view her as nothing more than dinner.  She bumped a rock, sending it with a KER-SPLUNK into some nearby water. What? she gasped.

It's just a rock. Thorn said.

I still feel uneasy. I keep feeling like there's someone else in here. she said.

Meanwhile, Littlefoot and his friends came to. "Where are we?" he asked, his head pounding like a sledgehammer. He was still disoriented. And it didn't help that there wasn't much light in here. And, much to their horror, they soon found that the storm had blocked the entrance to the cave. They had to hope there was another way out or else they would die. Poor Ptero would go mad and they dreaded to think what he might do to them when hunger totally ran his mind. He was half-Sharptooth after all. He was their friend and wouldn't harm them when in his right mind. However, when totally hungry, he'd be just another Sharptooth. Littlefoot had learned this when Chomper, having been trapped in a cave once with him and Shorty, had bitten him in the tail on instinct. Chomper luckily had snapped back to himself and they had found a way out, but he still knew what he was facing if they didn't get out this time. However, death that way, at least for him, would beat death by thirst and starvation. It was Ptero that he'd feel the sorriest for if it came to that.

Leafie moved forward in the cave. It did sound eerie. However, it was safer than being out there in the storm, with Sharpteeth that would love to have her for dinner. She was worried about her future. She had always stayed in the confines of Hunter Valley her entire life. Where would she go now?

OOOOOOOH! OOOOOOH! Wind moved through the cave. She jumped. She thought she saw a shadow. She moved forward, her tail raised. She had learned that it could be used as a weapon if anything unpleasant came across her. Luckily, it was just Lorenzo.

Oh, it's you. sighed Leafie in relief. I've been meaning to ask, why are we going in here exactly? It's really eerie.

There is a way out of Hunter Valley from here. It doesn't go past the pack like the entrances on the other side do. Lorenzo replied.

Where will I go once I leave Hunter Valley? she asked.

Not sure. The Mysterious Beyond I guess. he replied.  That’s the world outside of Hunter Valley.  he said at her blank look. 

Will I be safe from being eaten there? she asked.

Kind of. There are Sharpteeth out there too. At least, unlike here, they aren't looking for you, so you have that advantage. Lorenzo said.  Leafie rolled her eyes. 

I wish I could find some of my own kind to go with. Leafie sighed.

I'd love to help but every time I approach a Flattooth, they run away. So I've never been able to find anyone to take you. Lorenzo replied.

Wish I could go somewhere where I wouldn't have to fear being eaten by Sharpteeth. Leafie said.

I don't think there is such a place Leafie. Lorenzo replied. 

Lorenzo suddenly began sniffing the air. Flatteeth. he said.

Yeah, how do I smell? grumbled Leafie.

Not you! replied Lorenzo in annoyance.

Another Flattooth? Here?! Excitement rose in her. She might at last see another of her own kind.

Littlefoot and his friends moved forward in the dark. It was lucky for them that Ptero was part Sharp Beak and hence could see in this very dim light.

Littlefoot stepped into water, making a loud splash. "Huh?" he gasped.

"It's an underground stream." said Ptero.

"Then it will lead us out of here….I hope." Littlefoot said.

Leafie, meanwhile, asked Lorenzo Do you think that these Flatteeth will take me in?

I think so. Lorenzo replied. If they don't, I may be tempted to want to eat them. he thought.

They both saw a shadow approaching. They were already unnerved by the wind howling through the cave. The wind howling on a normal day would make the cave seem eerie, hence the thought that it might be haunted. However, on a day like today, it was plain nerve-wracking.

Lorenzo growled. He didn't want Dakota or some other Fast Biter attacking Leafie. The light was really dim in this part of the cave. Lorenzo raised his claws, preparing to attack if need be. The shadowy figure leapt at Lorenzo and knocked him over and began to pummel him.

Nice try Dakota! You won't be eating Leafie! the figure said. Leafie quickly realized that it was Thorn from his voice.

Thorn stop it! You're hurting Lorenzo! Leafie snapped.

Thorn blushed with embarrassment and stopped attacking Lorenzo. So sorry. Mistook you for Dakota. Thorn said.

Meanwhile, out in Hunter Valley, Dakota, having helped clean up some of the mess from the storm, went looking for the kids.  He hadn’t spotted them leaving out the other entrances and rightly guessed that they were headed for the Dark Cave to try and get Leafie out that way.  His uncle had spotted the kids near the Dark Cave.  Dakota had wanted to go after the group immediately but had been detained by his uncle, who had made him help out cleaning up the mess of the storm first. 

He had already told his uncle Xavier about Leafie, but the kids must have fooled Xavier.  Dakota, however, wasn’t to be deterred.  He climbed up a big rock face, planning to climb down the other side into the Mysterious Beyond and ambush the Clubtail on the other side of the Dark Cave.   However, much to his delight, he saw that the cave had been blocked off with debris and, besides that, the entrance to the desert had been totally closed with debris too.  There was no way they could be going out that way.  You won’t be going out that way Club Tail.  You’re going to be my dinner and your buddy Lorenzo is going to get his.  laughed Dakota. 

Littlefoot and his friends had found a way to cross the stream.   They saw light in the distance.  “There’s a way out of here!” Littlefoot said.  The group cheered.  However, their joy was short-lived.  They saw Farrell nearby.  He was on the lookout for Dakota, not them, but, of course, they didn’t know that.   “Oh great, a Fast Biter!” Guido moaned softly.  

PHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHBBBBBBTTTT! "What is that?" asked Guido in alarm.

"Ut oh!" said Spike. Spike had broken wind. They gagged.

"Ew, Spike's tush has blown a boomer!" said Ducky, fanning the air.  The group ran.   Farrell ran toward the spot where they had been, but found nothing. 

What was that? asked Flavia, coming toward him. She sniffed the air. Eccch, you reek! she groaned.

I didn't do it! said Farrell. 

Well, somebody here had to have let one.  Flavia said.

There are Flatteeth in the cave.  said Lorenzo, coming toward them.

Smelly ones too.  remarked Thorn, sniffing the air. 

I’m going to try and find them.  said Leafie.  She ran off.

Leafie, wait…..! yelled Lorenzo after her. 

Littlefoot went forward. He thought he heard something up ahead. He hoped that it was friendly and not another Fast Biter. He was ready to fight if need be. 

Leafie moved forward. She wanted to find out what else was in the cave besides them. She turned a corner. She had the club on her tail raised in case she came across anything unpleasant.

Littlefoot also turned a corner. He heard something up ahead. He moved forward slowly.  

Leafie moved forward slowly. She turned as she saw a shadow on the cave wall. She saw Littlefoot and he saw her.

Littlefoot and Leafie stared at each other. "AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!" they both yelled. They ran around, knocking over cave teeth and making a large ruckus. Thorn, Cheramie, Lorenzo, Farrell, and Flavia came running into sight from one direction, their claws raised, prepared to fight to defend Leafie. Petrie, Ptero, Guido, Cera, Ducky, and Spike came running from the other, also prepared to fight to protect Littlefoot.

The Sharpteeth on Leafie's side, thinking it might be Dakota or worse, came in, their teeth bared and claws raised. Littlefoot and his side started to attack the Sharpteeth, thinking them trying to harm them and Leafie. The Sharpteeth were ready to defend themselves. It looked like it could get ugly.

CHAPTER SIX: HUNTER VALLEY


"Come on, there are Sharpteeth!" Littlefoot said to Leafie.

"They are my friends." said Leafie.

“Friends?” gasped the others.  Leafie nodded. 

Ptero decided to talk to the Dakotaraptors.  Perhaps he could reason with them.  Hello there. What are your names? Ptero asked the five Fast Biters in Sharptooth.

I am Lorenzo. said Lorenzo.

I am Farrell. said Farrell.

Cheramie. said Cheramie.

Thorn. said Thorn.

I am Flavia. Who are you? asked Flavia, eyeing Ptero.

I am Ptero. said Ptero.

"Who are you? What are you doing here with Sharpteeth?" Littlefoot asked Leafie.

"I'm Leafie. They are my friends and are taking care of me.  I live here." she replied.

"In a cave?!" asked Cera incredulously.

"No, in Hunter Valley." replied Leafie.

"Where is that?" asked Guido.

"It's outside the cave." said Leafie.

“Go figure.” said Guido.

"Well, we need to get back home. We kinda had a mishap with a Sky Twirly." said Littlefoot.

"And Sharpteeth.  Two-claws." said Ptero.

"You can speak Sharptooth and Leaf Eater, just like me." said Leafie to Ptero.

“Wait, you know how to speak Sharptooth?” said Guido in shock.  Leafie nodded.

"My Mother was a Sharptooth. A nasty one. My Dad was a Flattooth." said Ptero to Leafie.

"I wish I’d known my parents." said Leafie longingly.

"I lost my Mom and most of my siblings when I was little." said Cera to Leafie.

"Me lose me Dad." said Petrie.

"I lost my Mother." said Littlefoot.

"Spike losted both of his parents." said Ducky.

“I don’t remember my family at all.” said Guido.

“I don’t recall my family.  I just remember hatching in Hunter Valley.  They said they saved me from an Egg Stealer and that my parents died in a rockslide.  They kept me hidden so that the Sharpteeth didn’t eat me.” said Leafie.

“Yes, and I was going to try and find Flatteeth to take them in.  And now I found them.” said Lorenzo.

“Where did you learn to talk?” asked Littlefoot.

“I’ve been spying on Flatteeth for many cold times.  I had to learn it so that I could ask the help of Flatteeth when it came time to have Leafie go with them.” said Lorenzo.  “Actually, all five of us know Leaf Eater.” he added.

They paused as they all heard a noise nearby. Footsteps. Somebody was coming. Somebody suddenly spoke. Littlefoot and his group, minus Ptero, didn't understand what it was saying. But the others did. So, you tried to run away with the Flattooth. Well, the storm has let up and I'm extra hungry after helping clean up!

"Who's that?" Ptero whispered to Leafie.

"It's Dakota." she said.

Hoping to get out of the Dark Cave? I found that the whole canyon over there was blocked. You won't be getting out that way. And you're in luck Lorenzo. All the entrances to Hunter Valley, minus the main one, have been blocked. Your Flattooth friend will have to go by the pack to get out that way. But, then again, the pack will enjoy the meal after all of their hard work. laughed Dakota.

“The canyon is blocked.” Ptero whispered to his group, who groaned softly.

Dakota, why are you doing this? asked Lorenzo.

Thorn whacked him.  You shouldn’t have replied.  Now he can guess where we are you idiot!  Thorn snapped softly.  Lorenzo felt foolish.

You took my girl. Now I'm going to get you for it. said Dakota.

I can think for myself Dakota. I don't like bullies. said Flavia.

Tell you what Flavia. You be my girl and I'll forget I ever found the Flattooth. said Dakota.

I'd rather fall into a tar pit! shouted Flavia defiantly.

What a pity. Be sure to say goodbye to your Flattooth friend. I figure that, once the pack finds her, they won't give you time to say bye bye then. laughed Dakota. Dakota was too smart to try and fight them all by himself, having been bested once before. He left.

"What he say?" asked Petrie, who didn't understand Sharptooth.

"He says that he's going to ensure that I'm going to get eaten. He doesn't like Lorenzo and he wants to get back at him. And you guys might be in danger too. He said that the only purpose Flatteeth have around here is the main course." said Leafie.

"Should we stay in here?" asked Guido.

They didn't need to wait long for an answer.

There is a Flattooth in here. It was Dakota again.

I smell a few of them. said another voice.

"He's not alone. There are others and they can smell you." whispered Ptero in Leaf Eater to them.

"What are we going to do? If they find us we're toast!" whispered Guido back.

“There is another way out. It will lead to the other side of Hunter Valley. It's further from the main entrance, but it's our only choice if we don't want you guys to get caught.” whispered Thorn.

The two told the others. They snuck through the cave and were able to get around Dakota and the other Fast Biters. The Fast Biters were nearby, sniffing the air. They could smell them and would believe Dakota this time. They all kept moving, their hearts pounding in their chests. They moved through a lot of twists and turns. The Leaf Eaters feared that around every turn, Dakota or the other Fast Biters would find them and it would be the end of them. Luckily, they were able to make it out.

“This way.” said Cheramie.  She led them onward and into some bushes. They went toward a small cavern. “In here.” Cheramie told them.  They went in. The group blocked the entrance with leaves.

Did you see the Flatteeth? asked Xavier.

Sure. They went into our stomachs. lied Flavia.

They're lying. said Dakota.

Come on Dakota. No Flatteeth here. If they were here, I'm sure that they'd have eaten them. said Xavier. He eyed Ptero. Who's he?

Our Sharp Beak friend, Ptero. He's just passing in. He helped us catch a Swimmer. lied Farrell.

Well, this valley is for Fast Biters to live in. You're welcome for a while Ptero, but I suggest you move on soon. said Xavier. He and the other Fast Biters, minus Dakota, left.

I know you're hiding them. I'm furious that you've made a fool of me twice! snarled Dakota. He slashed Lorenzo on the leg, cutting it open slightly. The five Fast Biters and Ptero moved to retaliate against Dakota, but he took off, muttering This isn't over punks!

“We need you guys to come out. You're going to have to move somewhere else. Dakota will not let you stay there for long.” said Thorn.

Littlefoot and his friends got out. They were worried now. It didn't look like they'd be getting back by dark. They were now more concerned if they'd be getting back at all.

Meanwhile, as the Bright Circle went down in the Great Valley, Grandpa Longneck was worried. "They aren't back. This is not good." he said.

His mate Irene nodded. "Don't worry Ignatius, they have survived out there before." she said, trying not to show the fear she had herself.

"I hope I don't lose Cera. Cerata would never have forgiven me if I lose her." said Topps, himself worried. Few things could scare Topps. The idea of losing his daughter was one of those few things.

"Poor Petrie. I hope he and Ptero are all right." said Mama Flyer.

"Petrie has been in pinches before Phyra, don't worry." said her brother Pterano.

"What about Ducky and Spike? What about Guido?" asked Mama Swimmer.

They all said nothing. The parents, grandparents, uncle, and step parent were all worried about their kids. They tried not to think about the worst. They went to bed, all feeling uneasy.

CHAPTER SEVEN: DAKOTA'S GRUDGE


“What is with that dude Dakota? He seems to really hate you?” asked Ptero.

"They used to be friends. However, he was rather a bully. Eventually, Lorenzo told him off and he became angry and skulked off. Then Flavia started to like me more than him. Dakota's crazy for her. So he started trying to get back at me.” said Lorenzo.

"What he do?" asked Petrie.

"He scratched me. That's how he got this scar." Lorenzo answered. Lorenzo showed a small scar on his leg.

"What a jerk!" said Cera.

"But that's not the worst part." Lorenzo continued.  "He suspects that I am rather friendly toward Flatteeth. So one day, when we were both outside of Hunter Valley he cornered a Longneck .  I asked him to let her go. But he said that I was too sensitive and that he needed to be brought to reality. He then killed her.  He offered me some, but I refused.” said Lorenzo. 

"That's terrible!" said Littlefoot.

If you aren't hunting Flatteeth, then how are your parents taking it?” asked Ptero, who knew from personal experience what most Sharpteeth parents expected of their kids.

"They said that he is a disappointment. I fear they’re going to make me soon.  So far, I’ve only had to get injured ones that others got first." said Lorenzo, trembling. 

Two Fast Biters went by. They appeared to be looking for somebody. The two suddenly started to move in the direction of the Leaf Eaters. They looked at each other, a happy look in their eyes. They advanced toward the Leaf Eaters, their claws raised and their teeth bared.

"Oh no you don't!" said Cera, starting to move forward as if to charge. Lorenzo, however, grabbed her.

"What are you...?" she demanded.

"My Mom and Dad." said Lorenzo.

Lorenzo's parents spotted him. Lorenzo, get the Flatteeth. It's supper time!

Lorenzo was hungry. However, he wasn't about to eat his friends. I can't. he replied.

Dakota is right. You are too soft. said his father, shaking his head.

All right, I'll confess. Dakota was right, I've been hiding a Flattooth. We found her when she was an egg. I couldn't eat her. She's too cute. protested Lorenzo.

His parents stood there, totally shocked. This explained a lot. But you're supposed to eat... said Lorenzo's mother.

I can eat other things. I'll don’t like to hunt Flatteeth. he said. You can't make me! he snapped defiantly.

His parents knew that they couldn't force their son. And, anyway, Flavia, Cheramie, Thorn, and Farrell came to block the way to the Leaf Eaters.

Who are the others? asked Lorenzo's father.

They're my friends. Please don't eat them. begged Ptero.

A Sharp Beak? said Lorenzo’s father in confusion.

Yes, I am with them.  Lucky I came with as I understand Sharptooth. said Ptero.

And the others? asked Lorenzo’s mother.

They are our friends too. We just met them today. They got into the Dark Cave and can't go out the way they came. said Flavia. They knew Flavia well, for she was Lorenzo's girlfriend.

Come on. We can hide them for the night. But we'll need to get them all out of Hunter Valley now that Dakota knows. Xavier is going to find out eventually. And he's in charge of the pack and can get them after you. They must not find you. said Lorenzo's father.

Who's Xavier? asked Ptero.

He's Dakota's uncle. said Farrell, a tone of unease in his voice.

CHAPTER EIGHT: SINKING SANDS MARSH


The Fast Biters led them in the night through part of Hunter Valley. They went through the places where Leafie had hid at. There were many different types of trees here. Littlefoot and his friends, minus Guido, ate some of the green here. Guido grabbed some worms that he'd found on the ground and ate them. The teens and two adult Fast Biters went behind some rocks walls.

"This looks like a great place to get caught and eaten!" whispered Cera skeptically. Littlefoot knew that Cera didn't trust Sharpteeth. It did seem odd that they were going back here. However, it would also keep them out of sight of predators.

Up ahead, they saw that the green grass had disappeared and was replaced by marsh. There was Sinking Sand up ahead on many sides. It looked like an unpleasant place to be. "Are you sure about this?" Littlefoot asked Leafie who then asked Lorenzo's parents.

Lorenzo's parents replied back and Leafie translated "They wouldn't expect you to come here." Littlefoot figured that they had a point. It wasn't his choice of a hideout.

The rain had made the path all muddy. Part of the marsh had covered the path ahead. It looked like they would have to wade across. "I cannot swim in this. Oh no, no, no!" said Ducky in alarm.

"We'll have to risk it. Besides, better to die this way then let those Sharpteeth find us." Leafie told her.

"But, I am afraid." said Ducky.

"Hang onto me then." said Leafie reassuringly.

Ptero, Petrie, and Guido were able to fly across. "Come on guys." said Guido.

They had a tough time getting across. Cera, Leafie, and Spike came across, holding onto each other's tails. The Fast Biters and Ducky held onto Leafie and each other. Lorenzo and Ducky started to sink. Fortunately, Littlefoot was able to get them out with his neck. They were able to get across.

"I'd like to see Dakota get across that." said Lorenzo.

They stayed in the middle of the marsh, on the dry ground. The Leaf Eaters plus Ptero ate the green food. Guido and the Fast Biters just stood there and watched.

"What's it like living with Sharpteeth all the time?" Littlefoot asked Leafie.

"You have to hide a lot. They never told me for many cold times why I had to hide. But now I know." said Leafie.

Thorn's stomach growled. “I'm hungry.” he said.

“Don’t look at me!” snapped Cera, whom Thorn happened to be looking at.  Thorn looked away. 

“Eat a hopper.” said Flavia. Thorn went to go get some. He came back with two hoppers. They were already dead. Littlefoot and his friends, minus Ptero, who had seen a dead animal before, grimaced. Leafie just stared blankly. She'd never seen her friends with anything that they considered food before. 

“So this is what you eat?” Leafie asked.

“Yep.” said Thorn.

“And it agrees with you?  I don’t think it would with me.” said Leafie.

“Well, sometimes it doesn’t.  I know a Tickly Fuzzy didn’t agree with me about being food.  But, then again, I wasn’t asking his opinion.” Thorn joked.  Leafie groaned at his comment. 

Thorn put the dead creatures into his mouth. Littlefoot and his friends looked away. Ptero just stared blankly. Leafie also looked. It was clear that this disgusted her.

“Sour!”  said Thorn.

“Gross!” said Leafie.

The bubbling from the marsh made them drowsy. They went to sleep. All but Cera, who kept a wary eye on the Sharpteeth, Ptero, and Guido.  

"I'll keep an eye on them." said Ptero.

Cera closed her eyes and went to sleep. So did Ptero, who was very tired. 

“Goodnight all.” said Guido, deciding that it was safe and lying down and falling asleep.

Lorenzo stared at the Leaf Eaters. They sure looked so sweet. It was so awful that his kind considered eating them.

He put himself next to Leafie and rested beside her. His friends joined him and they too nestled next to the Leaf Eaters and feel asleep.

The two adult Fast Biters stood guard. They listened for the slightest sound.

A Swimming Sharptooth came out of the water. It moved toward Leafie. Cheramie heard it and woke up.

“Leafie, look out!she cried.

Leafie got up and yelled. The Swimming Sharptooth went toward her. The two adult Fast Biters moved at it, but it would be getting to her first. She had to act. There was a look of fear in her eyes. But she knew what to do. She swung her tail and hit the thing. It fell, winded. The Fast Biters moved at it, snapping. The creature just barely got away.

One danger was averted, but another had come. There was a shadow of approaching Fast Biters on the canyon wall on the other side of the marshes.

"Get down!" Leafie yelled to her Leaf Eater friends, who had awoken from the commotion. They did and hid in reeds.

I thought I heard something. You might be right Dakota. There is something funny going on around here. It's obvious that there are intruders in Hunter Valley. More than just this Ptero. We will guard the only entrance out. Let them show themselves. came Xavier's voice.

Thank you Uncle. I hope to get vindicated at last. came Dakota's voice. Luckily, they didn't come any closer, having decided that they had just been hearing things. They left and went away.

After waiting a while, Littlefoot and his friends went back to sleep. They hoped that they would live to wake up the next morning.

CHAPTER NINE: XAVIER


Littlefoot and his group woke up the next morning. Littlefoot still had his eyes mostly closed and opened them a fraction. He saw someone next to him. "Hello Grandma." he said sleepily.

"I'm not your grandmother." said Leafie.

Littlefoot's eyes opened wide. It took him a moment to realize where he was. "Hello Leafie." he said, blushing.

"What's it like, having family?" she asked him.

"It's great, though I don't have my Mother, she got killed by a Sharptooth." said Littlefoot. Leafie flinched at the mention of that. Littlefoot knew what she was thinking. She had Sharptooth friends. "I have one too." he said.

"Have one of what?" she asked him.

"A Sharptooth friend. His name is Chomper. He's a full Sharptooth. Ptero here is only a half-Sharptooth." said Littlefoot.

"What is Chomper like?" Leafie asked.

"I cannot say what he is like now. I haven't seen him in some cold times.   I hope to see him again. I don't believe he'd ever be the bad sort. We've been good to him. And he's really kind and fun loving. He helped me learn that not all Sharpteeth are bad. We helped raise him, at least until his parents came to get him." said Littlefoot.

"You raised a Sharptooth?" she asked, her eyebrows raised. Littlefoot nodded.  “His Star Day was thirteen cold times ago yesterday.” said Littlefoot. 

"My friends here were so kind to me. My parents were killed by rocks. They raised my egg. They didn't eat me and hid me." said Leafie.

"We are glad to help." said Lorenzo.

"Any friend of Leafie's is a friend of ours." said Flavia.

Ptero came to them.  "I've been talking to Lorenzo's folks. It seems that we will have to wait here at least a week or so. We will need to leave out another entrance with Dakota and Xavier having the main one watched." said Ptero.

"A week?!" gasped the group.

"It's the best they can do." said Ptero. "And, they figured that it was best if Leafie went with us. I told them about the Great Valley. It would be perfect for her." Ptero added.

Leafie started to cry. "Leave my friends? But, when will I ever see you again if I leave?" she said.

'We will meet again. I know it." said Thorn. 

"Well, we need to get out of Hunter Valley first." piped in Cera.

"I'm hungry." said Littlefoot.

Cheramie handed him some green. "Leafie knows what you like." she said.

"Thank you. You don't have to get it. We can just..." said Littlefoot.

"No. Xavier will spot and get you." said Farrell.

"Dakota's uncle." said Littlefoot.

"What's he like?" asked Leafie.

“He can be ok, when he's in a good mood. But he can be really nasty if he gets mad.” said Farrell.

“How did he get those scars on his legs?” Leafie asked.

"Threehorn." said Cheramie.

“And what about the ones on his arms?” asked Leafie again.

"Clubtail." said Flavia.

Leafie and Cera gulped nervously.

“He hates Threehorns and Clubtails. said Lorenzo.

“Then we'd best avoid him.” remarked Ptero.

Xavier happened to be moving nearby. Xavier was a grey Fast Biter with dark yellow eyes. He had a stern look about him. Luckily, he was not near enough to spot them. He sniffed the air. Flatteeth. he said.

“You and your friends go hide in the mud. It will throw him off your scent.” said Lorenzo to Leafie.

"Quick, into the mud." Leafie told the others. They didn't need telling twice.

Xavier came by. He didn't see the Leaf Eaters. I smelled Flatteeth. he said.

Yes, I ate some for breakfast. lied Lorenzo's father.

I don't recall you leaving Hunter Valley. There is only one entrance open at the moment. said Xavier suspiciously.

They were on the other side of the Dark Cave. Got caught after the storm. said Lorenzo's mother.

I smelled Club Tail and Threehorn, among others. I'm not fond of them. said Xavier gruffly.

No Flatteeth here, except in our stomachs. lied Ptero, trying to sound calm and honest.

Very well then. said Xavier. He turned to leave. Oh, and Ptero, this valley is for Fast Biters only. Sharp Beaks aren't meant to be here. I suggest that you leave. Xavier added before leaving.

Xavier returned to Dakota. Nothing. he said.

They're lying. grumbled Dakota.

I can see no evidence of it. replied his uncle.

Well, those five seem to be catching a lot of Flatteeth. They don't even hunt Flatteeth well, as they always get away from them.  That in itself is odd. Dakota answered back.

I admit, their odd behavior on that matter has always perplexed me. Perhaps they are poor at hunting.  They will get better at it. mused Xavier.

I now know why they are so bad at hunting Flatteeth.  They are friendly toward them. They are hiding a Club Tail that they've named Leafie. They've been hiding her for many cold times. They tried to go to the Dark Cave yesterday. Perhaps they were trying to take her out of Hunter Valley. But that way is blocked. And now, they've found more Flatteeth. They're hiding those too. Dakota asserted, a look of anger on his face.

Why would a Fast Biter befriend a Club Tail? That’s just ridiculous!  asked Xavier.

I've no idea. I don't get those five guys. And now Lorenzo's folks are helping him hide the Flatteeth. added Dakota.

This is quite an allegation. However, at your insistence, I will have the pack start looking for the Flatteeth you spoke of. Goodness, we could use a meal. said Xavier. He left.

Dakota stood there, smirking. Let's see them try and get out of this one. he laughed.

CHAPTER TEN: ON THE RUN


Littlefoot and his friends heard Fast Biters come by late in the afternoon. "There are more of them this time." whispered Littlefoot in alarm.

Xavier says that there are intruders in Hunter Valley. remarked a Utahraptor.

That pesky Sharp Beak you mean? asked a Dakotaraptor.

"Pesky..." muttered Ptero. He was quickly muffled by the others who held his mouth shut.

Not him. He'll leave soon I expect. Dakota is saying that Lorenzo is hiding Flatteeth. said a second Dakotaraptor.

Dakota has had in in for Lorenzo for a long time. He might be lying. Why would a Sharptooth be hiding Flatteeth? replied a second Utahraptor.

Xavier believes something odd is going on. We're to scour every corner of Hunter Valley. said a third Dakotaraptor. They went past.

"They are going to find us." whispered Leafie.

"Well I've got these horns." said Cera.

"Won't do much against the pack." said Cheramie.

"They hunt together for a reason.  A single Threehorn will fall easily to them." said Farrell.

They suddenly heard more Fast Biters coming.  And they were coming from the opposite way.  The others were able to hide, though not in a good spot.  If the hunters sniffed, they’d be spotted.  As it was, Flavia thought quickly.  She went and smooched Lorenzo on his lips.  Lorenzo turned bright red. 

Flavia….I said Lorenzo, amused but also taken aback.

  Just then, the Fast Biters came into view.  They groaned.  Ecccch, teen love!  Didn’t need to see that!  they moaned.  They quickly wandered on.  Flavia stopped kissing Lorenzo.

Wow, my first kiss!  Lorenzo said dreamily.

Hmmmmph! said Flavia.  She soon, however, smiled. 

“Good thinking you two.” said Ptero.

“I thought I was a goner.” said Guido in relief.

“Ech, Sharptooth love!” groaned Cera.  They stood there for a while, wondering what to do next.

SPLASH!  The Leaf Eaters and Ptero were thrown into mud and hidden with leaves.  Littlefoot and his group were about to complain.  However, they quickly saw why.  Xavier was coming back.  He was with Dakota, who was grinning.  Dakota had a group of teenaged Fast Biters with him.  Four of them had yellow eyes, two had redeyes, and two had orange eyes.  Littlefoot wondered if he was about to be reunited with his mother. 

Ian and Helena, you are to come with us.  We are searching for intruders in Hunter Valley.  All adults are to help out. said Xavier.

Can’t it wait Xavier? asked Ian.

No. replied Xavier.  Ian and Helena had no choice but to come with, leaving their son Lorenzo behind.

Meanwhile, Dakota and his group advanced.  I know there are Flatteeth around here.  We’re not leaving till we find them.  You can tell us where they are and then leave so you don’t have to watch us eat them or we can sniff them out and eat them anyway.  The choice is yours. said Dakota.

Oh, what should I choose?   I think I will….. said Lorenzo, acting dumb.  Lorenzo suddenly leapt at Dakota and attacked him. He bit him in the arm, slicing open a small section. 

Ouch! cried Dakota.  Dakota’s cronies moved to defend him.  Flavia, shaking from fear at having to fight other Fast Biters, came forward to help her boyfriend.  Cheramie, Thorn, and Farrell came right behind her.  Ptero joined in as well.

“We have to help them.” said Littlefoot.  The Leaf Eaters came out and attacked Dakota’s group.  The combined effort of the Leaf Eaters, Guido, Ptero, and the five Fast Biters was enough to overwhelm Dakota’s companions.  However, the effort was exhausting. 

The bad guys started to move feebly.  Dakota was still up, trying to get at Leafie.  Lorenzo indicated with his claws for the others to flee.  They did, Flavia doing so reluctantly. 

Dakota, why do you want to do this?  Can’t you just let them leave Hunter Valley?  Lorenzo asked Dakota.

You aren’t supposed to be friends with Flatteeth.  It’s not normal.  My Uncle has been raising me to lead the pack.  After Mom and Dad were killed by the Two Claws and Aunt Prisca turned out to be unable to have eggs, I’m the only hope.  Uncle Xavier has been very stern on me.  He scared away many of my friends.  I wanted Flavia but you took her from me.  You have parents, friends, and a girl.  I have nothing but my uncle.  said Dakota tensely.  Lorenzo shoved Dakota over and took off. 

Lorenzo caught up with the others.  He began to sing.  “We are on the run.

 Being chased is no fun.”

“Dakota will tell everyone about me.

We’ve got to get out of Hunter Valley.” sang Leafie.

“We’ve got to keep our head.

Then none of us will end up dead.” sang Littlefoot.

“We are on the run.

Being chased is no fun.

If they catch us we are done.” they all sang, though Petrie sang it with his trademark bad grammar.

“Me have enough Sharpteeth for one day.

Me want them to go away.” sang Petrie. 

“I think we won’t do well in a fight.

Let’s be sure to stay out of sight.” sang Guido.

“I can take them with my horns!

They’ll wish they’d never been born!” sang Cera braggadociously. 

“Oh we are on the run.

Those Fast Biters we really need to shun.” sang Ptero.

“It really looks like Dakota’s won!” sang Flavia sadly.

“Oh what are we going to do?

Dakota knows about me and you!” sang Ducky.

Dakota came nearer to them.  He was with his pals and they all were smirking.

End of the line Lorenzo! Dakota shouted.

Lorenzo, in frustration, aimed his fist at a rock wall.  It shattered part of the wall, showing a passageway behind it.   They all were amused by this.

“Quick in here. 

Don’t wait for them to get near.” sang Lorenzo, finishing the song.

They took off through the passageway.  They soon found themselves out in the Mysterious Beyond.

“Now to get to the Great Valley.” said Littlefoot.  But they wouldn’t be getting back just yet.

CHAPTER ELEVEN: ESCAPE FROM HUNTER VALLEY


Lorenzo was very worried. Once word reached Xavier, he'd be in deep trouble. Xavier might even order his family to leave Hunter Valley for what he'd done. He stared to cry. "I hope Xavier doesn't take this out on my folks." he said sadly.

Littlefoot and the others could go back to the Great Valley now.  However, they felt sorry for Lorenzo and his friends.  “He going to be in big trouble.” said Petrie.

“It’s not our concern.  We’re going back to the Great Valley.  They’re no doubt worried sick about us by now.” said Cera.

“Lorenzo helped us escape.  We’ve got to think of something to get him out of trouble.  Dakota has it in for him and could get his family kicked out of Hunter Valley.” countered Leafie.

Cera went off, looking for the Great Valley.  “Dakota will find us if we stay here.  We have to keep going or he will find us.  Oh yep, yep, yep he will.” said Ducky.

I am going to get you Lorenzo, and your Flattooth friends too!  came Dakota’s voice from somewhere behind them. 

Run guys!  yelled Lorenzo.

The Leaf Eaters and Guido all took off.  The Sharpteeth remained behind.   Dakota and his cronies came into sight.  Where did they go?  he demanded.

I ate them all.  I have such a big appetite.  lied Farrell. 

You may have a big appetite but there’s no way you ate an entire Longneck, Threehorn, Clubtail, Swimmer, Flyer, Spiketail, and Glider all on your own!  grumbled Dakota in annoyance.

Meanwhile, further away, Littlefoot and the others came to a series of difficult to navigate tar pits.  One wrong move and they’d be trapped in tar.  “Just great!” Cera moaned. 

“I hope that Ptero gets here soon.” said Guido.  

Ptero, meanwhile, was preoccupied.  Hey you, Uncle said to get lost!  Dakota cried at Ptero.  No Sharp Beaks in Hunter Valley.

Ptero had an idea. He would talk for a long time and distract them so the others could get away.  Then he would fly off.  The Fast Biters, once they realized that they were duped, couldn’t follow him into the air.    Actually, I’m only half Sharp-Beak.  he replied.

Half?  inquired a Utahraptor.

My Mother was a Sharp Beak.  Dad was a Flyer.  replied Ptero, hoping to buy time for the others.

Meanwhile, Cera and the others were carefully skirting around the tar pits.  Spike was having trouble keeping his footing.   “Keep steady you big lug!” Cera grumbled at him.  Spike frowned. 

“You don’t have to be so mean!” Leafie chided her. 

“Sorry Spike.” said Cera.

“What are you going to do once you get to the Great Valley?” asked Ducky.

“I don’t know.  I…..” thought Leafie.  She still wanted to say goodbye to her friends.  “I never got to say goodbye.” she moaned, starting to cry.

“We can’t go back.  Dakota and his pals will eat us!” grumbled Cera. 

Leafie moved to go back.  Cera blocked her way.  “Don’t go back.  You’ll get yourself killed!” she said.  Leafie tried to force herself past Cera.  This caused both of them to lose their balance and fall into the tar pits.

“HELP!” yelled both Cera and Leafie, flailing in the tar.

Spike tried to free them.  However, when Cera and Leafie grabbed onto him, the weight shift caused him to lose his balance, causing him to fall into the tar himself.

Littlefoot, Ducky, Petrie, and Guido came to go help them.  Ducky, Petrie, and Guido were pulled in trying to get the three out.  Now Littlefoot struggled to get the others out.

Ptero, meanwhile, continued to tell the story about his time living among Sharp Beaks.  It worked and distracted everybody but Dakota.  Lorenzo and his friends had tried to sneak back into Hunter Valley.  They were bummed about not being able to say goodbye to Leafie but knew they had to find an alibi or they’d be in hot water. 

Hey, get back here!  yelled Dakota, chasing after them.  

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