Party Animals


"Jeff! Can you go to the Primate House? We need help to unload the supplies."

"Sure thing Rick, I'll be there after I check Vinny's cage."

"Alright, just don't take all day! I know he's your favorite. Let's unload the produce before 1990!"

"Very funny! Speaking of 1990, it was genius to have the New Year's party on Tropical Island. The monkeys will make it a blast! And the weather forecast still says it should be a warm clear night."

I waited for Rick to leave, then approached the enclosure. I had bottle fed Vinny as a cub, and we still had a strong bond.

"Hey big guy, I can't stay long today. Want some company for a few minutes?"

"PURRRRRR!" Rumbled the massive tiger as he rubbed against the glass, after a friendly head butt. I opened the door, and slipped in for a few seconds. Nobody was around, so it was faster this way than sectioning him off first. And we both enjoyed the contact.

"Thanks Jeff. Will see you at nine?"

"Yeah, maybe a bit later. I need to drop off some things for Grandpa first, and will probably spend some time there. Don't worry, he goes to bed early!"

"Don't forget the chips!"

"Don't you forget the burgers!"

I got on my scooter. After a busy day, began my very busy evening. Grandpa didn't know I had anywhere to be, and had spent some time reminiscing. I wouldn't have had it any other way.

Then I still had to run various errands. By the time I got back to the zoo, it was almost ten. I'd have to row the extra boat over. The old leaky one! The fast running river surrounding the island would not be fun to navigate in the old tub!

As I passed the Big Cat House I saw a light. "Did they forget to turn off the lights again?" I muttered, setting the chips down to unlock the door.

"CRACK!" Suddenly I was seeing stars. Someone had just slammed the door into my head. I could see their light bouncing as they ran towards the nearest building. The Primate House.

I ran, but I was still a little dazed. He was in there. I had heard the door slam. Probably just a kid on a dare... It shouldn't be too hard to catch him.

"Come on out, and I will walk you to the gate. No need for anyone to ever know you were here! I still remember what it's like to be young." I said, standing in the middle of the building. Somehow it seemed bigger than usual, with a lot of potential hiding places.

"I'm not ready to leave yet." said a distinctly older man. He then laughed, but there was no joy in it. At that moment I knew we had trouble.

Deciding to go get backup I walked towards the door, which I had forgotten to close. A large shadow distracted me. Willy, the silverback gorilla was loose! I tried to head slowly towards the door, but Willy had other ideas.

Having been born in the wild and most likely seeing his entire family murdered he was already in bad shape when he arrived. Willy had been purchased as a baby by a wealthy couple, but they quickly realized that they couldn't cope with him. When will people learn that nobody wins in the exotic animal trade?

As he slowly advanced towards me, I realized that he probably still hated humans. This would be the end. I would never see 1990.

ROARRRRR!!! A huge shape was standing between the silverback gorilla and I. Vinny!

The gorilla slowly backed up, towards what he knew as safety. He wanted in his cage. I could only hope that the door was open, I didn't have the keys for his cage on me.

As luck would have it, the door was open. He took a chance and bolted to the top of his tire swing. I moved forward as casually as possible and slammed the door shut. It locked.

I breathed a sigh of relief. But then I saw another set of eyes. Unfortunately for our saboteur, he had decided to hide in the large steel pipe which served as a tunnel and toy for Willy.

He was being very quiet. Maybe he would survive long enough for me to get Willy into his small enclosure. The large gorilla was almost always happy to comply in return for a treat. We definitely did not go in to clean his area when he could access it!

Once Willy was safely tucked away, I debated. Leave the two there until after midnight, or call the police now? I decided to call the police. No fair leaving poor Willy in that small space so long. Oh well, the party will still be going on most of the night.

First Vinny needed to go back home though. It wouldn't do to have a grown tiger on the loose with armed men around.

Obviously our intruder had turned him loose right as I arrived. That action saved my life. He was lying on the cool concrete floor, ready for action.

"Hey big guy, let's get you back home!"

After I put my friend back in his enclosure, I got some meat for him. Everyone needs a New Year's party!

This is a 100% power up post

Cover image is from Canva, using their gallery.

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