Chilled to the bone



It was 38,001 BC. The wind whistled and wandered along the cavernous rock walls, and the airborne frostbite laughed and joked at poor Grog, who lived under his sheets of leaves all throughout the cold night. The noise was so, so beautiful but the cold sliced through his skin.


The next morning, the caveman went scavenging. It was successful because he found many fine things, but even more so because he found the bone of a bird, hollow, with a hole like the mouth of his own cave.


That night was extra windy. Grog tossed and turned. He dreamed of the bone. He dreamed of the cave. And when he lay awake he stared at the rock ceiling listening to the wind. Then he wondered, would a smaller wind whistle in the little bone?


Many moons passed as he sat on his pondering rock, experimenting with how he could make the noise of the caves. When he ended up blowing into the end of the bone, a small noise flew out. This was a push of motivation, a stepping stone over the river, so he studied ways to blow into it. He tried 80 different angles, and 30 different amounts of pressure. Then he tried to measure the perfect position of it inside his mouth, but nothing worked.


Throughout all of his studying his kids were running around like lunatics. A rage rushed in. He stamped his feet and ran in circles, he yelled and snapped and he whimpered and he cried. Grog's nights were sleepless and cold as ever.


One day, in one final effort, he pursed his lips around the bone and stood on his feet ready to blow. However, simultaneously, his son Trog, was playing Mammoth Charge which, by the way, is exactly how it sounds, and his little legs went speeding in the very direction of his father. Before Grog could even move the bone from his lips and scream his son’s name, they had collided and air went gushing out of Grog’s lungs.


But, as the air left him, out of his bird bone came the most beautiful sound Grog had ever heard.




by Esther P, Year 5, Mt Pleasant School



This wonderful story was Highly Commended in our "What Year is It?" competition for Write On Issue 55: Time Travel.


If only we had enough funds, and space in the magazine, for a third, fourth or fifth place! NB: Esther gave permission for some small edits.


Copyright: Esther P and Write On 2020