A Short, Amazing Animal Story for Kids by A 12 Year-Old
An Animal Story for Children About Battles between Frogs and Salamanders
The Two Tribes and Fin
This Animal Story for kids was written by Xuan Chau, a 12 year-old fine pianist. Teacher's comment: Wonderful! A+
“Aww… Pa, do we have to go?” wailed Fin.
The other salamanders turned their small heads to look at him. They were under the old oak, a very large pine tree, where the family had lived for years and years. It was pouring out, pouring cats and dogs. In fact, the earth was so drenched that when the salamanders skidded on the ground, wet mud would squirt and splotch their shining skin. Fin, the youngest at the time, was a very unordinary salamander. His skin was a sparkling crimson red with jet black spots, while his father and mother were a pale jungle green. And although he strongly disliked the fact, it was time the family left their home in search of a bigger one.
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Once again, the young salamander blurted out, “Pa do we? Well? Pa, are you even listening?”
“Eh?” replied Tooth. “Oh yes, we gotta move sooner or later. Big oak’s getting too small for the family, and we need more room for the arrivin youngsters. Things are getting real crazy in here.”
“But I don’t want to go!” grumbled Fin. He jumped around in his anger, nearly balancing on both legs and repeated, “C’mon pa, can’t someone else go? Pleeeeaase?”
“Nope, you’re going all right. Going tomorrow. It’s live or dies son, that something you need to learn.” Tooth’s gentle tone changed immediately to an aggravated voice. “You know it’s for the best of the group. Hunting an’ protection aren’t enough. We need a good home too.”
Fire, the leader of the tribe, was sitting on a trembling high branch and nodded in approval.
Fin jumped up and left the room, still mumbling to himself. He entered the kitchen, and bit into a cockroach. Then he stood wondering how he would find the entire family a new home. “I thought life was supposed to be easy”, he thought.
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The next day, they left. Fin prepared for his journey south with only a small dagger, and packed food. His parents Tooth and Flour trusted him enough for this, because he was an adventurer, hunting for food just a few days after he left the nest. And when he had spare time, he would whip through the trees and practice swimming; something both his brothers hated.
Fin stumbled around in the meadow, kicking and turning over stones to look for food, which were plentiful in spring after a shower.
Then, a rustling noise disturbed Fin and his father turned around to greet the visitor. Fin sighed as he recognized possibly the most annoying person he knew.
“Me go to” squeaked Fin's little brother.
Fin grunted, stood up and said, “You’re too young Dapple.” He paused for a moment and continued, “If you stay home, I’ll help you with your acorn collection when I get back, got it?”
Dapple made a face, but agreed to go along with the plan. Then, Fin slipped out of the den and walked quietly out of the tree. Fin tapped the ground with his foot, to make sure he could walk without getting mud over him. Then, he straightened himself in a sign of courage.
“Goodbye!” Flour yelled as Fins figure melted away from their territory. “Come home safely! Oh, and if you meet strangers…”
“I know, I know already for the millionth time!”
“Just don’t get into trouble,” scolded Flour.
“Oh, just watch me mom. I’ll come back with the biggest, strongest, most stable home you’ve ever seen” and then, he was gone.
Fin sniffed the air and sighed as the warm summer air filled his lungs. But danger was always near, and like a cat stalking prey, it would come out unexpectedly and pounce on the victim. In this case, Fin knew well that the victim would be him, so he cocked his head in every direction, picking up the slightest movements. The ground was still wet, but firm enough to stop fin from sinking with every step. Later, Fin found that he was no longer walking in the damp grass of the forest. The shady wet green area he was use to began to disappear, and it was replaced by a vast plain with nothing but dirt, and a clear sky.
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It was growing quite hot, and salamanders don’t like the sun very much. The mud had dried up into dusty hard ground, and it was slowly cooking him alive as well. Fin searched around for a good area to stay while he rested. He traveled for a long time and covered a long distance from home. Soon after hours of traveling, Fin's legs began to feel like stiff cardboard. He even had to drag himself along the river to drink from the stream. Fin though he never tasted anything so refreshing. Finally, Fin came upon a fallen piece of bark that had been lifted up by a tree.
“Ah, at last,” Fin said as he plopped himself down in the shade. He took out his knife and started slicing the air and sharpened it with a piece of flint he saw lying in the grass. He smiled smugly at his reflection in the polished metal and let the cool breeze blow on. Then, he plunged the blade into the sandy dirt; causing a clanking sound and making the earth under him shake just a little.
Suddenly, a low croak broke the silence and Fin froze in the middle of his daydreaming. Two huge shining eyes opened behind the tall grass and looked at him for a second or two. Then, the entire thing, legs and all, mightily leaped out two feet in the air and landed with a “Thump!” right in front of Fin. The event had happened so quickly that Fin’s face was frozen with terror. But instead, he stood in front of the bulky animal and tugged the knife out of the sand. He looked at it with big, suspicious eyes. He eyed the creature all over, waiting for it to move an eye, or make some sort of sound, or attack him. The animal stood on all fours; it had long powerful legs, green slimy skin, and a big mouth that never opened, and it looked quite hungry.
“You look quite appetizing,” commented the creature after ages. “My master will be quite pleased when he find out he will be having a decent meal tonight.”
Fin hissed through gritted teeth and took a threatening step forward. The creature jumped in alarm and shot out a sticky tongue with great accuracy, just sliding across Fin’s back. Fin swung forward, and nearly lost his footing. He regained his balance, and then raised his arm to strike. Fin lunged forward, but the side of his blade only scraped the creatures’ slippery skin.
“Who are you?” Fin panted from behind.
“Who am I? I am brilliant frog. Who are you? I know you are a stupid salumouder. Stay still so I can take you back to my tribe and we will all eat you alive.”
Fin snorted and said back, “Ha! I will not let you. In fact, I think I will slay you first and bring you back to my camp.” Fin almost corrected the frog’s pronunciation of salamander. “Maybe frogs are just supposed to be stupid” he thought.
“Hmm… a tribe you say?” the frog said thoughtfully. “Maybe I will not kill you. Come Salumouder, bring me to your camp, you be spared.”
“I know more then to fall for your tricks frog. What is your name?
The frog glared at Fin for a moment with an annoyed expression, then said- “My name Uoogle. I part of Mahaki tribe. Leader sent me to search food in area, and I found you tasty salumouder. We guard the south, so you are not welcome.”
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Fin was getting very impatient, and for a moment, he forgot about his mission. “Well we guard the north, and you are not welcome near our home in the big tree! I suppose I will kill you now, uh…” Fin stiffened in hesitation as he noticed he had just given away his words.
“Well, now that I know your tribe place, we will attack. And if you follow me, we will attack anyway!” With that, he bounded off in huge leaps. The young salamander let out a fierce command at the frog. When that didn’t work, Fin tried for a moment to run after him, knowing he would tell his entire tribe, but he soon found out that salamanders could not easily catch frogs and that even if he managed to, he could not kill him alone. So he whipped around and slithered desperately back to his family.
“Bother,” Fin thought. “Now I have a whole tribe of frogs to get past. Things aren’t turning out so good…”
The next day, Fin finally arrived at his camp. He crawled up to the tree and lay down, exhausted from the long trip. Then, two familiar figures came running from the tree.
“Fin… Fin! Wake up!” Tooth shouted. Fin poked his head up and shook himself, cleaning himself of the debris stuck to his body.
Tooth sighed and said, “Well, you’re alive. Did you find a good ole’ place for’ the family yet? We’re excited to hear son.”
Fins father backed away in alarm as Fin waved his flipper in the air. Then he stood up shakily and screamed, “Attention! Attention! Mahaki tribe of frogs is coming! They will slay us if we don’t evacuate! Run! I speak the truth!”
“Calm, calm son! Pause for a sec. now, you just traveled a mile or so. Sit down and finish your story will ya?”
“Can’t,” he gasped. “We need to go now pa, or there’s no escaping”
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Tooth seemed a bit confused. He scratched his head for a moment, and replied. “You mean a pack o’ angry frogs is coming’ our way? No worries son, we’ll take care of ‘em. I’ve dealt with those creatures before an’ they’re tough.”
“N-no!” Fin stammered. “They’re bigger, MUCH bigger. You don’t have a chance pa, it’s live or dies, isn’t that what you said?”
“But where will we go?” yelled someone from the crowd that had gathered around them. “I mean, we can’t just leave and let them destroy the camp.” Murmurs of agreement rose from the crowd.
“Yes,” said another. “We stay and fight for home, even if means killing us all.”
“Yes!” howls and screams from the crowd filled the air, and Fin stood breathless in the middle of a huge circle.
“Let me join in the fun,” said Fins brother. “I wanna be a frog buster”.
Then, Dapple came out from the shadows and said, “Finny, your home. Can you help me with my acorn collection now?” as if she was oblivious to the shouting salamanders around her.
“No time for such nonsense Dapple”, Fin retorted. “Dapple, how’d you want to be a frog buster like us?”
“Yeah, yeah! Frog busters!” shouted the fans. Just then, the leader, Fire, who was watching the whole time, came into view and the crowd gasped and departed for him to enter. Fire walked to the center where Fin and tooth stood waiting. He raised his hand to declare silence. The noise bubbled down, and then the leader spoke.
“All salamanders, listen carefully. We care for the old tree. If the frogs of Mahaki tribe want to raid us, then we cannot let them do it. Fin, wouldn’t you agree young one? Fin nodded weakly to the leader. The leader then spoke again. “If I was to die, I would indeed die fighting. Those frogs will not be destroying our homes tonight!”
“I hope you’re right,” thought Fin.
“So like,” interrupted a child, “we’re going to fight an entire frog army that will be here tomorrow?”
“Yes, everyone will, including Fin, who has brought this message to us today. Hopefully, we are successful. Let’s prepare now!”
The other salamanders repeated him, and soon, the entire clan was shouting into the air like a frenzy. Tooth leaned against Fin and whispered a quick sentence while the chance was available. “Let’s see what you’re made of Fin,” and walked off quickly.
After a hard day of preparing, the clan was finally ready for the battle. Adults were armed with swords and stones, while the children old enough were armed with arrows about the size of half of themselves. The salamander leader was already detecting movements coming from the south, and a trail of dust leaded away from the distant army of frogs. For a minute, Fin was having second thoughts about the battle. “What if we’re not powerful enough? Will we all be killed?” he thought.
The clan was standing battle-ready near the oak tree in a large square. There was talking of the fight and if they would be successful or not. Suddenly, the earth began to shake a little, and the shaking grew, and grew, until it was like an earthquake had happened.
Finally, bursting out into the open trampled the army of frogs. One, Fin recognized was the frog he met two days ago, and he was beaming in pride. Uoogle saw Fin and stuck a sticky tongue out at him, but Fin was more concentrated on the leader. He was huge, twice as big as Fin, with a heavy stone charm hanging from his neck. It looked around, as if it was choosing the best place to attack first.
The sky has turned to a misty black, and a storm has reached them just before the battle. The frogs, bulky and massive, waited until their leader gave a signal. His brother was standing next to him, biting his lip. The other salamanders were standing, ready to charge into them.
Then, like a crack of lightning, the frog leader pounced up into the night sky, and the frogs charged like how angry bulls charge at the red cape. Uoogle came right towards Fin, and Fin flashed out his knife like a whip and cut the frogs neck. The frog yelled in pain, but turned to attack on Fin. It flicked out a tongue and it looped onto Fin’s leg. He squirmed and tried desperately to get free, but Uoogle held him tightly, then, he flung his tongue back into his mouth with Fin still attached. He felt the frogs’ hot breath pounding on him, and Fin knew then that he only had one chance, so he stuck his knife into the frogs’ mouth, which instantly released Fin. Uoogle spat out the dagger, and charged at Fin for a final attempt. Fin braced himself, and jumped right on top of Uoogle. He reared, and kicked and shook himself until Fin got very dizzy, and knew he would fall off.
But just at that time, Uoogle screamed, and toppled over, crushing Fin under his weight. He struggled for breath from under the massive frog. Fin felt the frogs’ heart still pounding, but it got weaker, and weaker, until finally, it stopped in the middle of nowhere.
Fin felt an arm reach out for him, and he grabbed it, careful not to get squished again. It took an enormous heave, and with a big sucking sound, he popped out from under the frog. Fin looked up and saw the face of his brother smiling hopefully. Then, he saw an arrow shaft stuck in Uoogles’ head.
“You ok?” he asked
“Yes, I’m fine, you can let me go now,” Fin sputtered.
Fin pulled himself wearily onto his feet, and saw that the battle had ended quickly. But one frog was still snarling and raving at the camp. It was the leader with the big stone chain, and Fin watched from atop his opponent as it pounded the floor with its front legs. Fin ran over, and delivered a powerful blow to the leaders head, which made it finally keel over. Fin raised his spear, and sneered as he listened to the frogs’ voice begging coldly for mercy. Then, he struck and the leader was dead in five seconds.
Some salamanders lay lifeless on the torn grass, but most were standing proudly upright, to Fin's relief. The air smelled of wet frog, making Fin cough once in a while. Tooth later came towards him limping, with a leg at a strange angle and greeted him.
“Dad, your alive,” exclaimed Fin. “I knew we could do it.”
“Yeah, those froggers put up somewhat of a fight, but they did no good. Too clumsy for fighting. The rest have already retreated.”
“That’s good,” Fin sighed.
Very quickly, Fin heard a muffled scream that sounded like the leaders voice. He spun around, only to find his leader half-swallowed by a dead frog.
“Mhhmmphphffmm!” squawked Fire.
Tooth stumbled over and tried to force open the frog’s mouth, but it was sealed shut like a clam. Tooth had to use Fins’ spear to work it open like the hood of a car. Then, the leader crawled out slowly, and headed out of the danger.
Fire nearly toppled over from a cracked forelimb, but he was able to walk over to the big rock and clear his throat. Other salamanders twisted to look.
“Well done everyone. What an exciting battle indeed. You have all fought well, and deserve lots of rest. Please don’t worry about me; just a broken arm is all…” The salamanders all murmured something inaudible at the sentence. “Warriors, come into the big tree, and sit down. Tomorrow, we will have a legendary feast…” Fire turned to look at Fin, and gestured with his good hand to come next to him. “This young warrior has brought us this message and warned us about the catastrophe. If he hadn’t, we would have all been killed.
“But I caused it in the first place” argued Fin nervously, but not loud enough to be heard by anyone other than Fire. “If I didn’t give away the secret, this wouldn’t have happened, and I might have even found a home by now.”
“Yes, but you were brave enough to fight for our home, and to tell us anyway. You should be proud Fin.” The leader looked to the audience again and said, “Tomorrow, we will all be honoring the glory and bravery of this young warrior right here.”
Fin stared open-mouthed and almost spoke, but decided to shut his mouth again. Besides, the crowd had already cheered, and Fins’ father was smiling broadly. Flour clapped her hands and screamed wildly for Fin, attracting the attention of others.
“That’s my boy!” she screamed.
After that, Fin no longer felt so guilty.
Soon, the salamanders had cleaned up the torn up “battle field”, which Fin used in his stories, and everything was back to normal. The feast was held, and salamanders were happy because the day had been saved. Fin walked around and was congratulated every time he was seen, so he was a very proud salamander indeed that would be always remembered. And he was very happy for that.