The jackals invade fruit park - Part 2
The morning dawned bright and pleasant in Fruit Park. The trees laden with fresh fruit swayed in the gentle breeze. The tangy scent of green mangoes, not yet ripe, filled the air. Crunchy apples in hues of red, green and yellow made the tree branches low with their weight. Bright purple berries sparkled merrily in the early morning dew.
Din Din looked around at his surroundings which had been his home for as long as he could recall. This was one of the most special parts of D'Land — special and unique because here all fruits grew in abundance no matter what the season.
"We dinosaurs have been so fortunate to have had Fruit Park as our home," mused Din Din to himself.
But as his gaze wandered, he saw foot prints of jackals in the soft fertile mud. Carelessly discarded banana peels and orange rinds littered the edges of the fruit trees. The stench of rotting peels filled his nostrils.
It had just been a few days since the jackals had begun to arrive in small packs in Fruit Park and already the dinosaurs could see signs of their dirty and inconsiderate manners. Yesterday, a pair of young jackals had even picked a fight with Din Din's youngest brother Don.
Din Din had woken up early this morning, much earlier than usual. His night had been restless. Dreams of being homeless, nightmares of jackals turning him out of his cave home, had plagued him and made him toss and turn. Finally, as the sun rose he left his cave home to take a walk down Fruit Park.
"Din Din!" his brother, Derek called out.
"You couldn't sleep either, big brother?" Derek asked. "I heard Ma saying that today all the dinosaurs of Fruit Park have asked to meet with the jackals and come to some sort of agreement about the living arrangements in Fruit Park," Derek revealed.
"Really?" asked Din Din. "I want to attend the meeting too."
"The meeting is at the orange orchard. But I have heard that young dinosaurs are not allowed. It's restricted to the elders," Derek said shaking his head.
"Well, I want to know what's happening. Not knowing is making me sick with anxiety!" said Din Din stubbornly.
So when all the elder dinosaurs and jackals gathered at the orange orchard, Din Din hid himself behind the grove of orange-laden trees.
Din Din could hear raised, urgent voices from within the enclosure of oranges. He tried to hide his huge, green body between the dark green leaves. He knew eavesdropping was a terrible thing to do but he couldn't help himself. He was sick with worry about what would become of them and the Fruit Park with the jackals living here. "There is no rule in D'Land which says that we can't live here," Din Din heard the leader of the pack of jackals growl.
"But in D'Land there is an unwritten rule about respecting each other's habitats and homes. By invading Fruit Park without our consent, you are breaking that rule," came Old Rex's husky voice, trembling with rage.
"We are not 'invading'!" laughed another jackal. "We have not turned anyone out of their homes? We are not living in any of the caves occupied by dinosaurs. Instead, we are living under the trees, in the open."
"But you are littering the premises; you are fighting with our young. We know your ways, jackals!" hollered one of the dinosaurs.
"We are not littering your homes," screeched a jackal.
Soon the orchard was echoing with the sounds of quarrels and cries. Some of the jackals snarled and snapped their teeth at the dinosaurs. In response, the dinosaurs stamped their huge feet and advanced on the jackals.
Old Rex's hoarse voice rang out, "Stop it! Stop it at once. All of you go back to your homes. We will meet at another time to work this out. I don't want anyone at fists and cuffs. Our dinosaurs have remained peace-loving for years now. Don't provoke them towards violence once again."
Reluctantly, the jackals left the orchards muttering to themselves, followed by the dinosaurs.
That evening when Din Din wanted to go to the lake to meet his friends Delma the dolphin, and Dazel the duck, his mother refused to let him go.
"No, I don't want you to bump into any of the jackals and get into a squabble," she said in concern.
"Ma! I can't stay cooped up in our cave in fear of the jackals," cried Din Din desperately.
"He's right," replied Din Din's father. "Let him go, Dee."
When Din Din reached the lake, his best friends could see that he was very upset. Din Din had been keeping them updated on what had been happening at Fruit Park since the last few days.
"I think you should ask Wiz Rooster to come and negotiate. The dinosaurs and jackals need a third creature to mediate," urged Dazel.
"I think we need to do that," said Din Din thoughtfully. So the dinosaur accompanied Dazel to Wiz Rooster's home. The rooster listened to what Din Din had to say. After a long silence Wiz Rooster replied, "All the creatures in D'Land know what has been going on in Fruit Park. I have been very concerned but I did not want to interfere."
"If you do not help in negotiating a truce or understanding, the dinosaurs and jackals will be at each other's throats. I am afraid there might be bloodshed," Din Din said morosely.
"Yes, we can't let that happen," Wiz Rooster shook his feathered head. "I will come tomorrow to Fruit Park. You will have to convince the dinosaurs and the jackals to listen to a third party."
"I will do so. I am desperate to go to any lengths to solve this problem," said Din Din nodding his head vigorously.
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