Disclaimer: Neither the show nor the characters belong to me, they belong to ITV1. Nonetheless, I love to borrow them from time to time. The idea of the story as well as the story itself – including all possible pre- or sequels published afterwards – are mine.
Summary: This was a dream, it had to be. This wasn’t supposed to happen, not here, not to her, not like this. Yet, here she was, trapped in the Early Jurassic, surrounded by dinosaurs considering her as nothing but food.Warnings: once again not beta-read
He held up his EMD, looking around him. The ground was covered with high ferns, most of them dry, but some still fresh and green. There were trees and bushes about a hundred meters away from the anomaly making the scenery look a lot like a jungle in the middle of a desert.
In some distance to his right he could see a herd of Diplodocuses browsing. They didn’t care about him or the anomaly.
He looked to the ground, trying to determine if this was the time and the place where Jess had disappeared. But there was nothing. At least, there was no blood. But did that really mean she hadn’t been killed? Or did it just mean this was the wrong time?
But even if this was the right time, it had been two weeks already. If there had been blood, it surely was dried and covered with ferns by now. The only way to find out was searching the area for her.
Calling for her was out of the question. It would draw the attention of every carnivore in the area to him, and thus block their passage back through the anomaly. He couldn’t risk that. He was here to bring Jess back, after all. And he would do that at all costs.
Becker was sure Jess knew that making any noise around here wasn’t such a good idea. That was why he hadn’t heard her voice calling his name yet.
The anomaly behind him closed as it was locked from the other side, leaving nothing but a small bubble of light. Becker started the countdown on his watch. Two hours. He had two hours to find out what had happened to Jess.
Carefully, he moved forward towards the trees. She’d certainly stayed on one of the trees to be out of reach of the carnivores walking around here. It had to be one of the higher trees where she was also safe from the bigger predators.
Looking at the scenery of the Early Jurassic, he couldn’t help but wonder if Lester might be right. He wasn’t sure any human being could survive here, and Jess wasn’t trained for this.
On the other hand, Connor and Abby had managed to survive in the Late Cretaceous for over a year – and knowing Jess he assumed she’d questioned them about it since the day they’d moved in with her. So she might by now know much more about dinosaurs and prehistoric eras than he did.
She was smart, much smarter than most people noticed through the friskiness of her clothing and her cheery nature. Many people thought because she was young she was incapable. But Becker knew the truth.
She was young, yes, but she was also brilliant and strong. She had survived, she was still alive. He just knew it. And he would find her. He wouldn’t accept the possibility that she was dead and he couldn’t bring her back.
“Damn it, Jess, where are you?” Becker whispered to the thicket in front of him.
Lester might not believe that Jess was smart enough and strong enough to survive two weeks in the Early Jurassic, but Becker did. He knew she could survive here. He was sure she knew enough about dinosaurs and prehistoric eras to stay alive.
Every day he’d spent waiting for the moment they could reopen the anomaly to get Jess back, Becker had needed to tell himself that it wasn’t too late, that she was still alive. He needed to believe that not to give up hope and go insane. There was no way she had died here. There was no way he would not be able to bring her back.
Slowly, Becker took one step after the other, all the time aiming his EMD in case there was another Sinosaurus trying to attack him. They had found out that there was possible prey available every now and then, so they surely would come back here eventually.
Becker stopped in the middle of the movement, scanning the area. But there was nothing but high ferns. Still, he felt like something was watching him. In the years in the army and at the ARC, he had learned to trust his instincts on something like that. If he felt like something was watching him, then in most cases something was.
Besides, this was an era where human beings were lowest in the food chain. Even the smallest raptors from prehistoric eras were more dangerous than any carnivore existing in the twenty-first century. And his EMD was the only thing standing between them and Becker.
If only Lester hadn’t been so damn stubborn. He should have sent a team here to save Jess. Then Becker wouldn’t be her only option, her only chance to get back home.
And she wouldn’t have had to wait two weeks for her rescue. If they’d been allowed to work at the ARC, their mission would have started much faster.
It was Jess, after all. She was the hub of the whole organization. This wasn’t supposed to happen to her. She was supposed to be safe and sound in the ARC, sitting in front of her ADD coordinating missions. The danger of being trapped in a prehistoric era and attacked by dinosaurs wasn’t in her job description.
He shouldn’t be the only one here to save her. They shouldn’t have been forced to contrive this mission behind Lester’s back.
Of course, he knew it hadn’t been possible. The rule that no one went through an anomaly existed for a very good reason. They had lost too many people that way. But Becker had to make sure they didn’t lose someone else.
He had lain down the rule to avoid people dying in another time because they didn’t know how to handle the creatures. He had always been convinced the rule was right and necessary. But ha had never thought that one day it would be Jess he had to abandon because of this rule. He simply couldn’t let this happen.
Of course, he could have asked Matt and Emily. They would have helped him, gone with him. Matt had done it before and he would have done it again to save Jess.
He also knew that the fewer people knew of their plan, the less dangerous it was. It was bad enough that Becker had had to drag in Connor and Abby for his plan. But he couldn’t have done it alone. He was the man for the action, for shooting, not for computer stuff. Besides, he couldn’t have locked the anomaly to make sure nothing came through.
If he had taken the device to this side of the anomaly, it might have been destroyed or just taken away by one of the dinosaurs – and thus their way back to the twenty-first century would have been blocked forever.
Becker checked his watch. He still had about one hour and twenty minutes left. Jess surely had stayed close to where the anomaly had opened the last time. That was where he would start looking for her.
The ferns rustled beneath his boots. He heard twigs cracking to his left and quickly aimed at the direction. But there was nothing. At least, he couldn’t see anything.
He wondered if it had even been possible for anyone to survive here for a single day, let alone two weeks. It was incredibly hot, and there didn’t seem to be anything growing here that was edible for a human being. But a human being was edible for too many things around here.
Besides, was it possible to escape a predator – even if it was as small as a Sinosaurus – without a weapon? He knew he relied a lot on EMDs or firing arms. But Danny had proven that a branch could be pretty useful as well.
Jess had survived. She had managed to kick the Sinosaurus, which was a pretty good way of breaking free from the smaller predators. Once it had pulled her through and she’d been able to see what she was aiming for, she had been able to kick the dinosaur and make it let go of her. He knew she had.
The trees weren’t too far away. Jess could have run fast enough to get there before the Sinosaurus could attack her again. They weren’t all that fast after all, were they? They also weren’t as dangerous as the future predators – and Jess had managed to escape them as well.
He was close to the first trees by now. So far there was no sign of any human being ever having crossed this land. He’d at least hoped to find a piece of clothing, or a shoe. Any sign that Jess had been here, that this was the right era and searching here wasn’t for nothing.
Still moving closer, Becker let his eyes search the treetops, hoping to find any sign of Jess’s colourful clothes. She’d worn a yellow cardigan that day, light blue jeans and a bright red top. The colours should be easy to spot in an environment like this.
He knew she had to be somewhere near. She was alive, hiding on one of the trees, staying close by the anomaly waiting for help. Waiting for help she must assume would never come.
He heard the crack again and quickly turned to his left. He almost didn’t have the time to react when he saw the Sinosaurus lunge at him. He jumped to the right, ducking the attack, and rolling over easily, landing in a kneeling position.
He aimed at the dinosaur and managed to fire three or four surges, taking out the Sinosaurus. But then something hit him from the right, causing him to fall. The EMD slipped out of his hands, and out of his reach.
Turning around, he saw four of the smaller predators charging at him. This wasn’t the way he’d planned the mission to go.
Dizziness spread through his head, and his vision blurred as blood from a cut above his right eye, and sweat ran into his eyes. But he wasn’t going to give up, not that easily. They had picked the wrong prey.
He kicked one of the Sinosauruses and quickly jumped up, hurrying over to grab his EMD. He managed to take one of them out, but another one clawed his arm, almost causing him to lose his weapon again.
He needed to survive and find Jess. He wasn’t going to end up dinosaur food before he had the answer he was searching for. Letting himself get killed by raptors was out of the question.
For the last two weeks his only aim, his only focus had been this moment. The moment he stepped through the anomaly to bring Jess back where she belonged. Back to their time, back to the ARC, back to him.
This wasn’t the way this day was going to end. This wasn’t the way his mission would turn out. He would find her and bring her back – and no dinosaur that had ever inhabited the earth could keep him from doing so.
With new found determination, he aimed for the second dinosaur, well aware that the third and fourth were somewhere right behind him and would attack him in an instant. But he couldn’t take all of them out at once.
He brought the second dinosaur down, and then blindly smashed his weapon behind him, hitting something that growled loudly the next second.
Quickly turning around, Becker aimed again, shooting the third dinosaur. The fourth one was gone, though, and in the distance he could see more of them surrounding the herd of Diplodocuses probably waiting for one of them to get separated from the herd.
So far, the Sinosauruses hadn’t noticed what their fellow species had found. If they did, the way back to the anomaly was blocked. So Becker needed to find the fourth Sinosaurus and take it out as well – quietly if possible to avoid drawing the attention of the other dinosaurs to him.
He got back to his feet, his EMD at the ready, and carefully scanned his surroundings for the fourth predator. Wiping his eyes with one sleeve, he hoped to clear his vision, but it remained blurred. All he could see were silhouettes of trees and bushes.
The blow on his head must have been more severe than he had first thought. Or it was really just the blood and sweat in his eyes. He needed some water to clean his eyes properly, but couldn’t reach for his canteen while another Sinosaurus was probably preparing the next attack.
Becker saw a movement to his right and turned towards it. But before he could shoot, something lunged at him, causing him to go down and lose his EMD again. He jumped up, ducking another blow of claws, and blindly searching the sand for his EMD.He heard a thud behind him, and then felt something grabbing him, pulling him with it towards one of the trees.