Disclaimer: I don't own Raptor Red.
And thanks for reviewing, Sanluris. I was never expecting one. And I'm glad you like this story alot. Have you read the book it's based on...? ...:3
A few days pass since the little acro hatched. He can see now and even wobble around a bit. Of course, that last fact normally got him in trouble. Often, he'd tumble out the nest and have to cry out to be put back in.
The female raptor never knew that being a mother was so hard. She had to catch enough to eat for both of them and she couldn't travel far. But, everything was worth the trouble. She's obviously doing a relatively great job.
She was scavanging over a dead Iguanadon when she heard the young acro cry out again. She wasted no time to run back to the nest at top speed. Upon arriving, she skidded to a stop and stared at the chick.
The young acro had gotten out of the nest again and was crying while attempting to climb back in. When seeing the adult, the chick tried to woddle towards her, his mobility improving more and more. He stumbled at every other step and fell to a heap when he reached her.
The Utahraptor gave a mental sigh of relief and bumped snouts with the squealing baby. She then picked him up in her jaws and settled him back on the nest, where he looked at her and begged at her muzzle.
After reguritating some of the meat she's been eating, she sat down next to the chick and looked around for any dangers. There was a dactyl near the stream, but it showed no interest in the little family, instead it was trying to capture a lungfish. It's inexperience showed it's youth.
Grunting, she sniffed the air for any further concerns. There was a distant herd of astros and the smell of deinonych was also in the air. She growled in agrivation.
The acro chick paused, looked up at his protector, and sniffed too. He tried to find out which scent was tensing his raptor mother. However, he couldn't distinguish which. There was so many and it could be either of them.
Finally he gave up and sat down. It didn't bother him about having a different style of sitting compared to his mother. She sat upright and he sat with his back almost parallel to the ground.
The raptor gave him a sideways glance, like she always does and bumps him. He falls down, still needing work on his balance. But he automatically bounces back up and presses himself against the raptor.
She gives a careful pressure back and they fall asleep as the calm afternoon continues.
The real acro mother was sitting, watching her two chicks while her mate was out hunting. He's been gone only a couple of hours and probably won't be back until nightfall. But, here in Tick-Bird Meadow, food was plentiful so there was always a guarantee of a full dinner.
She fidgetted in annoyance and shook herself to get rid of the bugs and ticks trying their luck at infesting an acro. She scatches her muzzle with a hindfoot before standing. Her chicks automatically stopped their game to mimic whatever their mom was about to do.
The female acro learned a technique to rid herself of the parasites about a month ago. There was a reason why this place was called Tick-Bird Meadow. She casually ambles towards the edge of the woods and makes a deep booming call.
A flock of tiny birds called sinorns fluttered and rustled the leaves of a nearby tree. They already learned the routine of this large predator and flew cautiously towards her, circling before landing on her ridged back.
The acro actually had the local female Utahraptor to thank for the tip. What seemed like a short time ago, the acro and her mate heard a weird squawking sound and went to investigate. They spotted their raptor neighbor covered in the birds.
Puzzled, they watched at a distance, surprised to learn what the birds were doing. Who knew that these puny feathered creatures can help save a life by eating all the disease ridden ticks? Finally, the acros charged and the bird scattered and the raptor retreated franctically.
Although most ticks can't penetrate the acro's tough skin and armor, the activity of being groomed by birds was relaxing and a safe way to ensure sickness will not infect the dinos.
The acro's chicks already understood the basics of what's going on: Flying feather dinos are good- keep them on your back. That's what the chicks think.
While the acro family enjoy their moment of relaxation, the raptor mother is ready to teach her chick the ways of the sinorns as well. After waking, she nudges the chick onto his feet and moves out of the nest.
The baby acro is confused. Was he supposed to follow? Seeing his hesitation, the raptor returned and pushed him gently out of the nest. He squeaked in protest and bewilderment, but nonetheless, stood by her.
Slowly, stopping occasionally to make sure the acro isn't falling behind, she leads him to more open spaces. She prefers open land, but nested in the more wooded areas to help keep out other large predators.
The little male chick is practically stunned by the meadow that stretches before him. He's never been far from the nest and never met anyone except his mother. So imagine his surprise to see things like live multis (he's only been fed dead ones) and the gigantic long necked Astrodon.
After getting over himself, he looked nervously up at his mom, hoping she would take him back to the woods. No luck. She was determined to teach him one of the most important lessons involving the local flock of sinorns.
Unfortunatly, she spots the flock on her acro neighbor and her chicks. With a sigh, she nudged her own chick back towards the forest. However, the young chick kept looking back. Although he's never met a fellow acro, his nose told him something he never thought before:
Half of me...