the pack of the primordial feather was hiding at the university of calgary, and they'd brought the sinister (and mysterious) crate 14 with them!
now came the hard part (as though finding the sneaky theropods wasn't hard enough!), i was going to have to figure out how to either steal or destroy the crate. all the while making sure i wasn't stolen or destroyed along the way myself!
before i could do this safely, i was going to need to know the lay of the land. as the pack was hiding in the geology collection, it made sense to approach the one person who would know the collections way better then the primordials. the geology collections manager.
the university of calgary's geology department i have to say, despite being a slightly different visual style, otherwise has a layout perfect for a bad horror movie. its basement is just one step short of a maze, and as of such there were lots of places for the pack to hide. even worse for me, it made finding the collections manager something of a chore.
fortunately for me (and my super t-rex nose) not many people came down here for long. so i just had to follow scents that were strongest.
or at least that had been the idea... i followed several scent trails only to find that they led through collections and then right back out of them. lots of people went into the collections area, to probably get stuff out of them, but they didn't stay for long. meaning i was going to have to get lucky and stumble across the smell of the manager... with the risk of accidentally finding the pack while i was at it, way earlier then i'd "planned".
as i followed the 30th or 40th smell (well okay maybe 12th, who cares?!? i lost count, as it was so boring tracking them all!) i came into a collections room that had some draws wide open.
i couldn't help but take a slight peek...
why do i always have to peek?
there was all sorts of cool stuff in there!
the fossils of course took most of my interest. there was some neat stuff, but all smallish (minus one which i'm saving for this weekend's upcoming fossil of the weekend!).
however it was a chunk of shiny rock that quickly became my fixation. for it was shiny and gold colour... in fact i was willing to wager it was gold...
i looked all around me, i'm not sure why mind you, to see if anyone was there. the coast was clear.
some instinct in me (probably a predatory one, which pushed my wild savage ancestors to seize any free resource while the chance was good) compelled me to snatch it. the human trained part of me screamed it was wrong, but than realized why not? the collections were big, it wasn't like anyone was going to notice it missing... besides i had a world tour to fund!
startling me from behind came a loud. "oh no you don't!" as someone nabbed me from behind preventing my running off with the gold.
like a scavenger caught with the meat red mouthed, i spat out the gold. trying to pretend nothing had happened at all.
the woman who'd caught me took one look at the rock and stated amusedly. "the fool's gold, how fitting," she chuckled.
the what? oh no, i realized...
"can the fool explain?" i asked. come to think of it, that was a rather clever salvage on my part.
"why not," the woman graciously accepted. i quickly explained my irrational thinking, and logic. she laughed it off. "oh i wasn't worried about replacing of the pyrite. it's worth less than the ink it was number with. it's just a pain in the neck to have to catalogue everything again 'disappeared'."
i introduced myself, and i learned this nice lady's name was carmen... who was the collections manager!"now if you'd have taken off with this," carmen held up a different rock from the pyrite's drawer. "then i'd have been annoyed."
i found myself ask by reflex. "is it valuable?" oh man, that must have come off wrong! i seriously didn't want to steal anymore stuff (today... a crate soon perhaps... but nothing from her or the university!)
carmen laughed again. "no," she'd deliberately tried to pull my leg. "i just like the colour of this particular piece!"
"so what can i help you with?" carmen inquired.
"how could you tell i was wanting your help," i answered her with my own question.
carmen smirked. "no one comes down here unless they need something from me."
how to word this properly... "i'm looking for a new item that was added to the collections. probably without your knowledge."... i probably should have mentioned i was looking for a box protected by a bunch of killer dinosaurs.
i didn't though. so carmen took us off into her collections based on my rather vague and cryptic criteria.
though this wasn't the most time efficient way of searching, i did get a cool tour of the whole collections area!
the coolest had to be this. or at least i thought it was until i found out what it was.
take a quick guess right now... what do you think this is?
i liked it because of the weird wrinkles in the rock. however, when i tried to pick it up, i discovered this little wacky piece of "stone" was amongst the heaviest things its size i have ever tried to lift!
if you asked me at that moment i would have thought this veiny mass to be a rock of some kind. i had no idea how scary it was!
i couldn't resist, and tried to handle the substance in the container. my tiny arms wouldn't fit. yet i still managed to move the stuff in the middle enough to get a "traumador!" from carmen.
"i see what the palaeo people are on about. you dinosaurs being a real hand full," as she corrected what i'd done.
"speaking of which," i decided to end our search on my desired quarter, rather then have carmen kick me out (due to touching stuff i shouldn't be... got to work on that!). "the item we're looking for. it was smuggled into the university by some particularly troublesome dinosaurs."
carmen shushed me with her finger... her FINGER! no one has done that to me for a long time! i thought i was getting better at not yammering all the time... "that is the silliest thing i've heard, hmmm at least today," she stated. "none of the lab rats are clever enough to have planted anything down here. that alone have anything worth to hide."
"it wasn't the rats," i clarified agreeing with her disbelief. the vivus-dinosaurs kept here at the university legitimately couldn't have pulled something like the crate.
"not the rats?" she asked unsure what i meant. "what other dinosaurs could it have been?"
oh man. well at least we'd have time for the story as we checked out the more hidden sections of the collections...