An Anuran’s Story
By Ryan Childs
When I first open my eyes, I see algae growing all around me. I’m trapped in a blob with a lot of food to eat. It’s not very good food, but its food. I watch in horror as a goldfish snatches my mom. I realize that I have to put my wits on if I want to survive. I spend twelve days in my egg. I’m starting to worry that I’ll run out of food, and I do in the middle of the eleventh day. I start to get bigger. As the day progresses, I think this may be the end. Is that a crack? It can’t be. It is. Hey! I’m not the only one. My friends are escaping too. I’m free! Is that a human? Aaaah! I dart off as fast as a little tadpole can swim, barely escaping. A massive hand shoots out and grabs fifteen of my brothers. I start eating the algae I was laid in and think that maybe I can survive. As I turn around, a hose nozzle falls into the water, almost crushing me, but I soon find out that that is the least of my worries. It is filled with poison. As it is released into the water, I start to feel my life slipping away. As I fall to the bottom, I start to feel a little better.
When I wake up, there are dead tadpoles all around me. Then I see that I’m forming legs. As I kick off with my legs, I feel alive. I see tadpoles that are starving and realize that I’m hungry too. I look around and see that most of the food is gone. I spent the rest of the day looking for food. I finally spot a patch of algae across the pond. Could I make it? I’ll have to try. As I get halfway across the pond, I see something shinning. My curiosity gets the best of me. I swim, and as I’m looking at it, a burning pain runs through my side. I realize that my tail is hooked and my side is cut. If it doesn’t kill me, I’ll die of hunger. I realize that it will hurt, but I pull away. I’ve felt anything as painful as that. I survive and wade into the algae patch where I eat and sleep for a long time.
I awake and realize that I’ve lost my tail. It isn’t like when it ripped the last time. This time it didn’t hurt. I realize that I am almost a frog. At this size, I would make a good appetizer! I should go back so that I can live with some buddies. As I arrive, I see a bunch of fish. I wait until they leave. Once they leave, I swim over and see a frog graveyard. I don’t see a living frog. I now realize that my parents left because baby frogs are an easy target. At last I hear something. It’s another frog that is a little bigger than me. I am about to say “hi” when I am tackled from behind by another frog. The frog said “Are you out of my mind! That frog will eat you.” He then said “I was about to take a nap when you came. Maybe we should take turns so one of us can guard.” That was the beginning of a long friendship. My friend started to grow and turn into a frog. He stayed with me until I turned into a frog too. We then set out in different directions in life.
I survived for a long time alone. Then one day, when I was going for my daily hop and swim before luner, I saw a frog lying on the ground with a snake sneaking up. I jumped into the water to distract the snake, giving my friend a chance to escape. I escaped too. Later we met up, and I asked her to live with me in my stump. We lived until old age, and we’re sure that at least one of our eggs became a frog.