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 TO AFRICA

As the clouds are swirling around them they hear the sound of drums beating in the distance. The cloud puffs are clearing up and they look around. Kio is smiling. "Africa, my home," he says. They now hear a roar that sounds like thunder in the distance and everyone really starts shaking. "That there sounds like a hungry lion," says Cowboy Jim. Kio laughs. "Yes, it is a hungry lion, but he is not near. He is probably 3 miles away. If he was nearer, you would have really jumped out of your skin."

Chief Running Bull and his braves don't feel very comfortable. They have never been in an African jungle before and they are frightened by the sounds they are hearing.

"How did we get here?" one of the braves asks. "Remember the dark hole I was looking for?" Kio says. "Well, it seems like the dark hole found us first. This is what happened to me when I found myself in your land. You never know what shape it is going to be in."

Cowboy Jim is swatting his face all the time. "Dang mosquitos. Oops! Sorry Kio, but these things really bite."

Cowboy Jim takes off his hat and starts waving it at the mosquitos. He turns around and falls. Splat! Chief Running Bull, his braves and Kio hold their stomachs as they are laughing so much. It was not many minutes ago a herd of elephants had passed this way.

Cowboy Jim does not think it is so funny. He needs to take a wash. "Come on," says Kio, "I know where we can find a waterhole for you to clean up."

Cowboy Jim follows Kio muttering under his breath. "Dang mossies. Dang elephants."

(Now waiting to hear what Cowboy Jim has to add......)

(Cowboy Jim's addition to the story)

What Kio didn't tell Cowboy Jim was that they wouldn't reach the water hole til the next day. As they rode through the jungle, Chief Running Bull and his braves sat with eyes wide open listening to the strange sounds that sung all around them. A family of monkeys shadowed them swinging through the trees chattering as they went. They reached a clearing and decided they'd camp there for the night.

The braves went right to work building a fire. Cowboy Jim just shook his head. What's wrong Uncle Jim? Kio asked. Look at that there fire! How am I sopose to cook over that! When Kio looked he laughed. The braves in their fear had built a fire that stood ten feet tall. Come on Uncle Jim, i'll help you build a smaller one our dinner. Anything you try to cook on that one will be burnt for sure! Kio added still laughing.

They ate the last of the deer meat that Cowboy Jim shot from up on the bluff. Tomorrow they would have to hunt. The sounds of the jungle seemed to intensify as darkness fell. All of a sudden there was a rustling in the bushes and before anyone could move a big armored beast with a single horn over it's nose came charging from the bushes and ran straight to the fire the braves had built and began to stomp it out with it's massive feet. In no time the fire was out and just as the beast charged in, it charged out and was gone. The braves had all scattered.
Only Cowboy Jim, Chief Running Bull and Kio stayed and watched. What
strange kind of bull was that? Asked Cowboy Jim. That wasn't a bull, it was a rhinoceros, Kio told them. I'm sorry he said, in my excitement to be back home i've forgotten some of the dangers. It's ok little pardner, it seems no harm was done. The Chief called out to his braves to return and little by little they came out from their hiding. Cowboy Jim looked down at Kio and gave him a wink. There be no sleeping for them tonight. Kio put his hand over his mouth to hide his snickering. A pack of hyenas passed by the camp with their own sort of laughter.

Day break couldn't come soon enough for the braves and when it did there
was a brief argument as Cowboy Jim prepared a smal fire for coffee. Kio
assured them it was safe.

Soon they were back in the saddle and by noon they reached the water hole. Cowboy Jim leaped from his horse and dove straight into the water. WAIT!!! cried Kio. But before Cowboy Jim could hear him he was under the water. When he rose up, wiping the water from his face, Kio screamed for him to get out of the water. Cowboy Jim stood up waist deep in water, What's the matter little pardner? I thought this water was safe for bathing? But before he could take another step something grabbed Cowboy Jim by the legs and he went under. Kio and the indians looked horrified as blood began to fill the water. With a spash, Cowboy Jim appeared with his legs caught in the mouth of a giant crocodile. As Cowboy Jim reached for his knife the crocodile twisted and began to do a death roll. The water began to swirl faster and faster creating a whirlpool. Cowboy Jim fought the crocodile and broke free but the whirlpool was getting bigger and bigger. Kio picked up a stick and reached out into the water. Grab
it Uncle Jim! Grab it! Cowboy Jim grabbed the stick but the current was too strong and before anyone could realize what was happening, Cowboy Jim and Kio were sucked into the whirlpool and vanished under the water.

A few moments later they both came splashing up to the surface and made
their was back to land and just layed there, both tired and weak.  It was several minutes before Kio noticed that they were alone. Chief Running Bull and his braves along with all the horses were gone. Kio called out to them but there was no answer. Where can they be Uncle Jim? I don't know Kio but I reckin it's best we move away from this water hole if it's ok with you. The wounds to Cowboy Jim's legs weren't as bad as it seemed. Ripping his shirt he bandaged them best he could and they moved on.

Why would they leave us and take our horses Uncle Jim? I don't understand? Perhaps they were frightened away like last night at the camp and this time not wanting to come back Cowboy Jim said.  Cowboy Jim knew what happened but wasn't ready to tell Kio yet. He noticed that there were no tracks anywhere to be found but those made by him and Kio.

They walked aways, both not talking, lost in their own thoughts when they came to a clearing and stopped dead in their tracks. Their eyes grew big and both shook their heads and rubbed their eyes as if not believing what they were seeing. There in the clearing was a herd of beasts Cowboy Jim have never seen before and Kio only read about in books. They must've stood 150 feet tall and were as big as a mountain.


DINOSAURS!!! Kio said with both excitement and fear in his voice. We
traveled back in time Uncle Jim!

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