Illustrated by Rob Barnett
Stories Copyrightę Katie Newell 2002
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Willy and the Incredible M.O.U.S.E.
It was dawn on Smilestone Island. Orange clouds tiptoed across the mountains, letting the sun spill over the valley into Smilestone Village. All of The Smilestones were asleep, with the exception of Willy Wisdom, who had just finished his greatest invention, and Little Lenny, who was peeking from the shadows.
Puffs of purpose smoke rose up from the machine. "Blast!" Willy Wisdom frowns and readjusts the panic alarm, the most important button on the time machine.
"Perfect!" cried Willy, admiring the amazing machine. "It's so cool!" Little Lenny whispered, startling Willy. "Is it a time machine?' he asked, running his little hand on the sparkling hood.
"Oh, my Dear Boy," explained Willy, "it's so much more than a simple time machine. M.O.U.S.E. travels through time both forward and back. If you are hungry, M.O.U.S.E. will even fix you a snack! It can float and fly, disappear and ZOOM. And, by goodness, M.O.U.S.E. can even clean up your room!"
"Wow!" yelled Little Lenny. "That's the greatest! But why did you call it M.O.U.S.E.?"
"Good question, Friend." Willy said. "M.O.U.S.E. means Machine Offering Unusual Space Erasing. It can go anywhere, into any time."
"Gee, Willy. Do you mean it could take me back to the time of dinosaurs? Dinosaurs are so awesome and so cool! I love dinosaurs! I mean, dinosaurs are so..."
"Stop it!" yelled Danny. "Stop it with the dinosaurs! All you EVER talk about dinosaurs!" Danny and the rest of The Smilestones had woken up and came to see what was going on.
"Do Not!" Little Lenny whispered, kicking the ground.
"Do, too!" Danny frowned.
"DO NOT!" Lenny countered.
"Oh, good grief," yawned Margaret (rubbing her eyes). "What is all this fuss about?"
"The fuss," announced Lenny, " is this incredible M.O.U.S.E!"
"Machine offering unusual space erasing." began Willy, "and Lenny and I were just talking about taking our first trip. Isn't that right?" "Yes it is. Willy is going to take me to see the..."
"DON'T SAY IT!" Danny warned.
"THE DINOSAURS!" Lenny jumped up and down with delight.
"Okay, fellow Smilestones. Here we go for our date with The Dinosaurs!" Willy put on his flight goggles and nodded at his copilot, Linda. "Mouse-O-Meter set for 115 million years ago?"
"Check!" announced Linda.
"First Aid Kit on board?"
"Check!" said Freda.
"Check!" yelled all of the Smilestones in unison.
"Then let's go see the..."
"DINOSAURS!" screamed Lenny.
The machine began to shake!
The ground began to quake!
M.O.U.S.E. spun around.
Then appeared a whirling sound.
Next flashing lights filled the room!
And all at once there was a...BOOM!
And then there was silence.
All of the Smilestones were dizzy. Strange bird noises filled the air. M.O.U.S.E. was bobbing up a down, just a little. "I think I'm gonna get sick!" yelled Danny, holding his hand over his mouth.
"Now, now," said Willy, "you just need some nice fresh air. Willy took in a deep breath. "Ahhhh, smell that sweet air?"
"No, no I don't." Danny was turning green. "I smell something yucky."
"Me, too," said Linda.
"Yea, so do I." Michael remarked.
"We're up so high!" Margaret said worriedly.
"I do see some cool things, but they are WAY down there!" said Kenny.
Willy pushed some buttons on the Mouse-O-Meter. "Okay folks, it appears that smell is...now wait... hold on for just a...okay, yep, it's..."
"Dinosaur breath." Lenny whispered.
"Right-O." beamed Willy.
"And that's his eye." Lenny pointed down at the blinking creature's eyeball.
"Right again, young Lenny. It appears we've landed on top of a dinosaur, right on his snout." Willy thumbed through his manual and stuck his head out the window. "Yes, indeed. Well, I think this is a Muttaburrasaurus (mut-uh-bur-uh-saw-rus.) According to my dinosaur manual, our new friend has a large flat snout and is mainly a plane eater. However, it says his teeth work like a pair of sheers, leading scientists to speculate that he may be partially carniv..."
"Never mind!" Angus said. "Let's get off this thing!"
"But how? We're in terrible danger!" screamed Danny, who was about to cry.
"Perhaps we could tickle ourselves off," offered Linda.
"Fascinating idea, Linda," said Willy. "Let's give a try, shall we?"
So all of The Smilestones began to tickle the scaly brown dinosaur, with the exception of Little Lenny who was already crawling down the large beast to retrieve Teddy. The Muttaburrasaurus made a few strange noises, wiggled and then tossed M.O.U.S.E high up into the air. Willy pushed a button and two large silver wings popped up. He landed M.O.U.S.E. safely on some strange plants below.
"Hooray!" yelled The Smilestones.
Soon Little Lenny came to a clearing and right smack in front of him was a small dinosaur, who was clutching Teddy. He was showing Lenny his teeth and making a strange growling noise. "Give me back my Teddy!" Lenny demanded.
"Nope." Said the small dinosaur, clutching Teddy closer.
Little Lenny thumbed through the pages of the dinosaur manual.
"Ah ha." Willy pointed at the beast. " You're a Leaellynasaura (lay-el-i-nuh-saw-ra). You are no bigger than a baby kangaroo and you are a plant-eater. It also says you are one of the largest brained dinosaurs, so if you know what's good for you, you'll give me back my Teddy." Lenny wrinkled up his face and took a step closer to the small dinosaur.
"I am?" said the dinosaur. "I mean," he cleared his throat, "of course I am smart. And just because I am a plant eater, that doesn't mean I can't be scary."
The dinosaur threw his head back, releasing a terrifying roar. He had sharp teeth and bad breath. Lenny was scared and froze.
"Listen," he said, "I'm a dinosaur with a dilemma. You help me and I'll help you. What do you think?"
The dinosaur tilted his head to one side and closed on eye. "Wellllll..." he said tapping his foot.
"You see, I've got three eggs. I can only hatch two. There's a nasty Oviraptor around here trying to eat my eggs! You'll need to sit on the third one for me, and hatch it."
Lenny looked at the small dinosaur. Then he looked in his manual. Oviraptors were egg stealers, and had no teeth. They had to suck eggs for their food. Lenny looked at Teddy.
"Okay. I will help you hatch this one, and you give me back my Teddy. Deal?"
"Blast!" Willy yelled. "I don't know why that always happens."
"Uh, Willy..." Kenny taps Willy on the shoulder. "Not now, Son, I am trying to fix our ride back home!"
"Yea, Willy, but, it's just that..."
"Well, spit it out!" Willy was so busy trying to fix his machine that he didn't even see the huge dinosaur bending his head lower and lower and lower until his eye was right behind M.O.U.S.E. His large mouth opened wide.
"Ahhhhhhh!" screamed the Smilestones, running into the machine as fast as they could, but it was too late.
"Are you thinking what I'm thinking?" Linda whispered.
"Yes. I think we've been swallowed."
"Ick!" yelled Danny. "Well, that's just gross. Lenny and those stupid dinosaurs!"
"Oh my Goodness," Margaret said, "Where is Lenny?"
"You're quite right, Margaret," announced Willy. "Lenny is not here! From that I deduce that Lenny is out there. We must find a way to get Lenny back in here, fix M.O.U.S.E, and return home before lunchtime! And I mean the dinosaur's lunchtime!"
"But how?" said Kelly.
"I'll work on the machine. You guys try to make some type of disturbance that causes this big guy here to spit us out. Once he does that, Angus will fly around and grab Lenny, and we'll split! Got it?"
"Got it!" The Smilestones yelled in unison.
"Come on, Egg, hatch!" Lenny squirmed around. "Really, I gotta go find my friends."
"Nope. You can't go until you hatch my little one there. No hatch, no teddy." The dinosaur bared his teeth to Lenny.
"I'm trying, really I am."
Crack, pop, rattle. The eggs beneath the dinosaur were starting to hatch! But Lenny's egg wasn't doing anything. He squirmed again.
"You can do it, Little Egg!" Lenny leaned over and put his head against the egg, listening for any sounds.
Back inside the dinosaur the Smilestones made a ruckus. Michael played on his guitar, Linda karate chopped at the dinosaurs cheeks, Kenny rode his skateboard all around, Margaret bounced her basketball off his teeth.
"Okay, Friends, do your things!" Willy announced.
"Hi-Ya!" screamed Linda.
"Wheeee!" yelled Kenny.
"Strum, Strum, Strum!" sang Michael's guitar.
Suddenly, the giant's mouth began to open slightly. A strange and horrible noise began to fill the room. The dinosaur started tossing his head forward and back, side to side.
"Watch out everyone, HERE...WE...GOOOOOO!" yelled Margaret. Just then the dinosaur spit out M.O.U.S.E. and all of the Smilestones. Angus flew out the door to find Lenny.
"It's hatching!" yelled Lenny.
The small dinosaur peeked his head out and smiled at Lenny. Lenny looked up and saw M.O.U.S.E flying through the air. "It's my friends! I gotta run! Maybe sometime you could come see us on Smilestone Island!"
Seconds later, Angus grabbed a hold of Lenny. Lenny grabbed Teddy. All the Smilestones were safe back inside of M.O.U.S.E. and Willy Wisdom turned the power on.
"HUMMMMMMMMMMM!" went M.O.U.S.E.
The Machine began to quake!
The ground began to quake!
M.O.U.S.E. spun around.
Then began a whirling sound.
Next flashing lights filled the room.
Then all at once there went a...BOOM!"
"Hooray!" yelled The Smilestones.
"MOUSE-O-Meter set for 115 million years in the future?"
"Check!" said Linda.
"Then let's go home!" yelled Willy
The Smilestones land back on Smilestone Island, right on the beach. Warm waves wash over their feet. M.O.U.S.E. has a big on smile his face.
"Well, Little Friend," Willy put his hand on Lenny's shoulder, "did you have a good time on that little adventure?"
"By the way, Lenny, just where did you wander off to?" Margaret asked.
"Yea, Lenny, we're just dying to know."
Danny rolled his eyes.
Lenny had a big smile on his face.
"You see, Smilestones, I did something no one else has ever done. No one on Smilestone Island, for sure. And probably no one else in the whole wide world!"
"Yep. I helped hatch a baby..."
"Don't say it...!"
"Don't say it!"
"A Baby Dinosaur!" Lenny screamed with delight, jumped up and down and jumped into Willy's arms. And just then, the sun began to set on Smilestone Island and all of the Smilestones began to walk back to their village. Everything was quiet, except the sound of the ocean, and the tiny snores of M.O.U.S.E., who would undoubtedly have many more adventures to come.
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