Part I: A Warning
(At the very end of Out of the Shadows...)
(A/N Yes this is a repost of the epilouge at the end of OOTS.)
It has been five years since the sharptooth invasion. Five years since many of Littlefoot's friends lost their lives to a ruthless yet mind-controlled Chomper. Five years since Littlefoot was forced to say good-bye to his friend whom he knew from hatching day, Rex. The valley had returned to normal. Many of its citizens had forgotten that terrible day. But those closes to Rex had scars in the back of their mind of what had happened.
Littlefoot and his pals were now fully sized adults. They were no longer considered children. Cera had become leader of her father's herd. Her father, weak from sickness, would watch her proudly as she led their threehorn herd with expertice.
Spike had learned how to speak properly thanks to tutoring from another spiketail. Spike had joined with a spiketail herd, and while he felt bad about leaving Ducky behind, he believed this is where he had to be for a while. He promised Ducky he would return one day.
Ducky had adjusted to life without his brother being around so much. She had found a mate named Nightfall, and she had recently nested. She would gently turn her eggs, and waited patiently for them to hatch.
Petrie had also found a mate of his own. Pterano was chosen to be the godfather of their children. As Petrie hugged his mate, a female flyer named Rainbow, Pterano watched them proudly. They had just laid an egg, and Pterano couldn't feel happier. He loved children, and he was glad, despite his past, Petrie was willing to trust Pterano in the raising of the children.
Bron and Shorty were still in the valley. Shorty, a fully grown Brachiosaurus, was in charge of helping Bron whenever he needed it. Bron was starting to age a bit, and sometimes slipped. Thankfully Shorty was always there to help.
Then finally, there was Littlefoot and Ali. The two had paired off years ago, and were practically inseparable. The pair sat near the cave they had been in all those years ago. While it brought back haunting memories, it was the perfect place to raise their children. They had two, a son and a daughter.
Littlefoot looked up at the skies. He took in a deep breath. He recalled that day, when Rex disappeared forever. Sometimes he would see dracovols entering the valley to get a drink of water. He would always think it was Rex, but sadly, none of the dracovols looked like Rex, or even sounded like him.
"Littlefoot?" Ali's voice snapped him out of his trance. "You thinking about Rex again?"
"Wha..who..? Oh..yeah..." Littlefoot lowered his head. Ali nudged him softly.
"Don't worry about it!" Ali said, smiling. "He wouldn't want you to be sad forever!"
"Yeah...I know..." He sighed. "Another thing that keeps bothering me is what did Doc mean when he told me...nothing is as it seems..?" He looked at her, almost expecting an answer. But the female dinosaur was just as puzzled as he was.
"Maybe he was just joking with ya. He was an old-timer anyway. They tend to joke sometimes." She remarked.
"Not Doc." Littlefoot said seriously, eyes narrowed.
"Sorry." Ali said, head lowered.
"It's all right." He said. "I'm just confused, that's all."
"Daddy! Daddy!" A childish voice shouted, racing towards him. Littlefoot laughed, forgetting about his sadness. "Could me and Marsh go out and play?"
Littlefoot laughed again. "Why sure, Brook, you can take your sister and play."
Marsh bounded out beside Brook, giggling. They began to run off, tackling each other along the way. "Yay!" They shouted, happy to be outside today. The sun was out, and it was warm. It was a nice day today.
"As long as you stay within your mother's sight." Littlefoot instructed.
"Awww..." The little longnecks muttered. "I thought we were old enough to be on our own!"
Ali laughed, and reached out with her longneck, and nuzzled her two children. "Oh you will be, one day. But not now."
Marsh looked up at her father, noticing him leaving. "Dad? Where are you going?"
Littlefoot stopped, and didn't bother looking back. "Out for a walk. Be good for your mother." And he disappeared into the trees.
Littlefoot walked for a while. He looked around at the trees. He imagined a shadow or two, and whirled around to see who it was. But he would see nothing. He came across the spot where he and Rex first became enemies. He choked, trying to forget that horrid memory. He turned off in another direction. He found another familiar spot. It was where Rex made the wish.
Littlefoot stopped, unable to take his eyes off that spot. He dreaded this place. Ever since that day, he marked this place as off limits to his children. He was afraid they would come back and ask him about it. But he knew he couldn't continue running from the past. He would have to face it sooner or later.
He took in a deep breath. But not today. Today it was just too painful for him. He turned around and began to walk away. He suddenly heard a voice from behind him. It said, "Well there you are! Long time no see!"
Littlefoot turned around, looking for the sound of the voice. "What? Who's there?" He demanded, but no one made an appearance. After several minutes, he shrugged, and continued to walk back towards his home.
"Now now, where are you going?" The voice asked again, in a playful manner.
"Who is that!"
"Now come on, Littlefoot. Surely you remember me!" The voice laughed.
Then, suddenly, it dawned on Littlefoot. As he heard rustling behind him, and footsteps walking his way, he knew...he knew who it was. He couldn't believe it..but it was real. This was no dream.
Gathering his strength and courage, he turned around, and his eyes widened at what he saw. Not able to hold back a big smile, he felt tears of happiness appear in his eyes. "Rex!"
"Rex!" Littlefoot shouted, his voice filled with joy and amazement. He could feel his heart racing. But how was this possible? How could this be possible? He saw Rex die before his eyes! He saw Rex vanish into the moonlight! He saw that awful flamebreath steal Rex away from him! And for five long, painful years, he and his friends had to cope with the absense of Rex. It had been a long and hard road for them all, and no one was as effected as Littlefoot. And even seeing Rex before his eyes couldn't help him shake those horrid feelings of despair and loneliness.
"Yes, Littlefoot." The dracovol, in flesh and blood with his blue-green skin and dark blue eyes, walked forward, the same wings he used to have before he made the suicidal wish stretching out from behind him. As he approached the longneck, he reached out with his humanoid paw, the same paw he had touched Littlefoot with before. "I'm here." He whispered softly.
The longneck backed away, given sudden confusion to the now fully grown dracovol. "How...How did you come back?" He whispered hoarsely. "The flamebreath...she took away your life! She took you away from everyone who ever cared about you!" Littlefoot felt a tear running down his face. "But now...now here you are...standing right in front of me..." He chuckled. "T-This is just a dream isn't it? Just like all the others...I'm going to wake up in a few seconds..."
Rex rushed forward, despite the longneck was continuing to back away, and grabbed Littlefoot's head and looked him square in the eye. "Listen, Littlefoot! This is no dream! This is reality!" He dug his claws into Littlefoot's cheeks to prove a point. Littlefoot yelped in pain and recoiled back, looking at Rex with a hurt look. "I'm sorry Littlefoot, but it was the only way to show you that you are not dreaming."
"I'm not dreaming..." Littlefoot breathed. The truth began to sink into his heart, filling him with mixed emotions. "Th-Then this is really happening...? You are really back..?"
Rex moved his hands all over his body, feeling his skin and flesh. He concluded, "Yep, I'm back." He looked up at his childhood friend, and smiled, and grinned, exposing his sharp teeth.
"I...I..." Littlefoot said, not sure what to think. He knew that this was real, but he wasn't sure if he should accept it as reality. "B-But how did you come back?" He asked again. "How is it possible you could be standing here before me? I thought the flamebreath stated that..."
"...that I would lose my life, I know I know." Rex said quickly, sounding a little annoyed. Littlefoot was a bit taken aback. Rex noticed this. "Sorry if I sounded a little rude, Littlefoot."
"That's okay..." He said softly. "...so what happened to bring you back here...?"
Rex shrugged. "Someone must've made another wish..but I cannot imagine who." He turned away. "I've actually been back for a longer time than you can imagine." This got Littlefoot's attention, and he leaned in closer. "I actually came back a month ago." He turned around to face Littlefoot. Just like he expected, Littlefoot was frowning a little, looking a bit betrayed. "Yes, a month ago." He repeated.
"...why did you wait until now to come here?" Littlefoot angrily asked. But he settled down when he saw the dracovol's saddened face.
"I...I had to help a friend..." He sighed and turned his head away. "He was hurting himself...and I saved him."
"Saved...?" Littlefoot's voice trailed off. "Saved who...?"
(A/N Yes I got permission from Cyberlizard to use Tanner.)
Not long after he said that, he heard more rustling. He whirled his head around to notice some longneck walking towards him. "A longneck...?" Then Littlefoot noticed the sharp claws, the snout, and the feathers. No, this was no longneck. "No...not a longneck..." His mind clawed through his memory to search for the name of this species. It suddenly came to him. "An alimon?"
The figure walking towards him slowly, limping a little, nodded. "Yes..I am an alimon...for now." He added, spitting on the ground to get a nasty taste out of his mouth. He was a light red in color with green stripes and a beige underside, green eyes and black claws. He was covered in scabs and cuts, some of which he thought would become scars. Littlefoot also noticed there was a slight reddening in his eyewhites and a few of his feathers were torn in half.
"Who are you...?" Littlefoot asked cautiously. "And what on earth happened to you?"
The red alimon blinked, and pretended to look emotionally hurt. "Why Littlefoot, how could you not remember me? I helped you when you were still a kid. Don't you remember?" The longneck shook his head. "Well of course you don't! You never seen me in this form before." He chuckled, despite the dark mood he was obviously in. "It's me, Tanner."
Littlefoot couldn't help but smile. "Tanner? It's really you?" He stepped forward and stared at the red alimon that was once human Tanner. "It is you!" He nuzzled the green-striped alimon gently. "I'm so happy to see you!" He pulled away and frowned quizzically at him. "But what happened to you?"
Tanner snarled a little and turned away. His behavior stunned Littlefoot, causing the alimon to back away. Rex sensed the tension and he walked in between them. He looked up at Littlefoot. "Uhh...that's not a subject you want to get into with him at this moment." He whispered softly so that Tanner couldn't hear him.
"Why?" Littlefoot asked.
"Because..." Rex sighed. "He's still recovering from a depression that drove him to try and kill himself."
"What!" Littlefoot gasped out loud. "Why would he..!"
"Shhh!" Rex warned him and pointed at Tanner. Littlefoot understood and shut his mouth. "He was depressed about my death." Rex sighed and shook his head. "I'll never forget what it was like when I first found him...He was such a wreck."
"What happened...?" The male longneck inquired carefully.
"Well..." Rex inhaled, and began to tell Littlefoot about what had happened.