she loved her coloring book. she often slept with it -in it, actually -pulling the fun shapes up over her like a blanket; tunneling in between the cool sheets like an adventurer on a treasure hunt.
her unimaginative mother wasn’t looking, she’d talk with the
characters, and play with them, and learned all about them. T-Rex liked
eponymously knitted caps. and secretly didn’t like the color green
-but everyone colored her green, so what could she do? T-Rex sighed
sometimes, when she was alone.
“what do you like?” she whispered to T-Rex, her hand cupped near T-Rex’s ear, so that her mother wouldn’t hear.
“pink nail polish,” T-Rex giggled back.
giggled too. that was funny. a T-Rex with pink nails -who ever heard
of such a thing? but -delighted -she dutifully painted T-Rex’s nails a
strong, bright pink. when she was done, they both sat back and admired
“do you think,” asked T-Rex, “Zebra will like this color?”
“I don’t know,” she whispered back, feeling conspirational, “I think... he only likes white and black.”
thoughtfully tapped and admired her bright pink toes; her tiny little
T-Rex arms resting happily upon her big round T-Rex belly. “maybe... if
we paint the rest of me... pink?”
“but... will he recognize you...?”
tilted her tiny little head. a tiny little puff of air whiffed in and
out of her flared nostrils as she thought about this.
but you know what would be so exciting?” she exclaimed, but softly, so
as not to interrupt her mother, who was in the kitchen yelling at her
teapot and pans.
“ooh...?” said T-Rex, perplexed but a little excited too.
she said with great authority. before T-Rex could respond, she was off
with her purple crayon, eager to hunt down Zebra and fill him in on the
latest news. he was going to be purple today!
think,” Zebra said when she found him, “I look good in black and
white.” Zebra lowered his sunglasses and eyed her purple crayon with
“it’s only temporary, I promise,” she said, filling in his white stripes with purple before he could stop her.
“that tickles!” Zebra protested, giggling as he tried to wriggle away.
“hold still!” she asked him sternly, coloring him in as fast as she could, “T-Rex has surprise for you.”
Zebra stopped wriggling and giggling. “a surprise?” he asked, delighted and... well, surprised.
“yes,” she said, with great authority, “and you’re going to like it.” and then she giggled. and then they both giggled.
“I like surprises,” declared Zebra, still feeling tickled as she slowly turned him purple with her crayon.
she was done, they both paused to admire her handiwork. Zebra flicked
his tail and did a few turns for her, turning this way and that, trying
to admire himself from all angles.
“purple and black,” Zebra said.
“it looks so good on you,” she smiled back at him.
“but... will T-Rex recognize me...?” he asked her, suddenly worried.
“ooh, yes!” she promised, nodding her head with confidence, “totally.”
bounded off the page before she could stop him. Excitedly, she turned
the page to find Zebra and T-Rex admiring each other.
“ooh, that’s so crazy!” T-Rex was exclaiming.
“ooh... you look so pretty!” Zebra was declaring.
“ooh... you’re so handsome,” T-Rex was blushing.
felt so happy, just watching them. suddenly, T-Rex and Zebra both
turned to her. “but... this page is so plain. this won’t do.”
“oh!” she knocked over her box of crayons.
“I’ll fix that,” she answered eagerly, more than happy to color in their world.