Lightning flashed across the thick, gray sky. Thunder shook the ground. A heavy downpour filled the air with torrents of water.
Daniel and Audrey huddled under a tiny umbrella. Daniel's windbreaker was wrapped around himself and Audrey in a feeble attempt to keep them both dry.
"Looks like it's only going to get worse," Daniel said. "We'd better head home before the flash floods start."
Thunder rattled the ground again, but this time it was followed by a loud, animalistic roaring sound. Still shivering from the cold, wet rain, Audrey tightened her arms around Daniel.
"What was that?" she said, shaking.
"It sounded like a herd of angry beasts," Daniel said.
Several loud pops filled the sky, almost like gunfire. Daniel and Audrey peeked upward from beneath their umbrella. Waves of brown, green, and red raindrops were now falling from the clouds.
The roaring sounds grew louder and more high-pitched as the earth-toned waves fell earthward.
"Look at the ground!" Audrey shouted. "That's not rain!"
On the pavement, piles of tiny creatures were forming.
"They're...dinosaurs?" Daniel said.
"Tiny little ones!" Audrey said. "They're adorable!"
Daniel unwrapped his windbreaker, gave Audrey the umbrella, and bent down. He held out his hand to the ground. Little dinosaurs crawled into his palm. Each one was no larger than his pinky finger.
"Hi, little dinos," Daniel said to the creatures in his hand. "What are you doing here?"
"We're here to take over the Earth," a miniature stegosaurus said.
Upon closer inspection, the stegosaurus was wearing goggles. It was standing next to a miniature triceratops and a brachiosaurus, who were also wearing custom-fitted goggles.
"You're so tiny," Audrey said. "How could you possibly take over our planet?"
"Well, we're dinosaurs," the triceratops said. "We once ruled the Earth. We can rule it again."
"Especially with all the life lessons we've learned over billions of years," the little brachiosaurus added.
"Billions of years? But you're extinct," Daniel said.
"Extinct? Who are you calling extinct?" the brachiosaurus said. Then it bit Daniel's thumb.
"Oww!" Daniel said, trying to shake the dinosaurs off of his hand. But they would not fall off.
"We're time travelers," the stegosaurus said. "But not from the past as you might think. Those fossils that come from rocks are our ancestors. In the old days, dinosaurs were giant, slow, and got trapped in rocks. But we've learned to be better. We come from the future, where dinosaurs are tiny, quick, and live in the clouds."
"Clouds are the opposite of rocks," the triceratops added.
"Why are there so many of you?" Audrey asked.
"Small things multiply faster," the brachiosaurus said, releasing Daniel's thumb.
Daniel looked at Audrey. "This can't be good," he whispered into her ear. "We could be seeing the end of the world happening right before our eyes."
"But what can we do?" Audrey whispered back. "We're clearly outnumbered."
"I have an idea," Daniel said. He took the umbrella back from Audrey. Then he twisted the handle counterclockwise three turns and clockwise half a turn. The umbrella opened up to five times its regular size.
"Hold me," Daniel said to Audrey as he wrapped an arm around her.
A gust of wind blew from below, lifting Daniel and Audrey up into the air by their umbrella. "I didn't come up with this myself," Daniel said. "It's from Mary Poppins."
The wind continued to lift Daniel and Audrey into the air until they were at the top of the Empire State Building, where it deposited them on the roof.
"How'd we get all the way to New York City from LA?" Audrey asked.
"Anything's possible when we're together," Daniel said.
"That's so true," Audrey said. "But what are we going to do about those dinosaurs? They're going to take over the planet if we don't stop them."
"That's ridiculous," Daniel said. "Those little dinosaurs couldn't even find their way out of my hand. They're harmless. I say we bottle and sell them as pets."
Three months later, Daniel and Audrey stood at the entrance to their warehouse, which was packed with mini dinosaurs from the future.
"Feeding time!" Audrey called out. "Not so fast, you little T-Rex. You have to get in line if you want food!"
The little tyrannosaurus jumped up and down. "But I'm hungry!" He tried to rub his tiny belly, but his arms were too short.
"Tyrannosaurs are the cutest," Audrey said.
"Plus they eat spiders," Daniel said. "Who wouldn't want a few of them running around their house."
"Do you think we'll ever stop selling dinosaurs and go back to writing fiction for a living?" Audrey asked.
"Only if we run out of dinosaurs to sell," Daniel said. "Or if people stop buying them."