You need a place to hide, if you’re gonna see this.
This is the creature King Ryons and Cavall encountered on the plains in The Thunder King (No. 3 in the Bell Mountain series). No one had ever seen one before, and lived to tell about it. Ryons called it the Death Dog.
The video is from Tim Haines’ TV special, Walking With Prehistoric Beasts. He re-created the extinct Hyaenodon as a super-predator, and inspired this scene in my book.
For more information on all the books in the series, just go to the home page and click “Books.”
The Eohippus, “Dawn Horse” (aka Hyracotherium), comes to life in one of my favorite movies, The Valley of Gwangi–another wonderful special effect by the stop-action wizard, the late great Ray Harryhausen.
James Franciscus is about to be tempted into a very great folly…
All my life, the Baluchitherium has been the largest land mammal ever. (Don’t let that “Paraceratherium” business throw you: they’re always changing the name.) And then they bring up this… this Paleoloxodon thing, this mere elephant–and say, “No, it wasn’t Baluchi-something. It was this new discovery! Hail, Paleoloxodon! Greatest land mammal ever!”
Pshaw. That Baluchitherium in the picture is hardly half the size of the one that carried King Ryons to the rescue of Obann. And the elephant is just plain overgrown. So it had longer and straighter tusks than any modern elephant–go on, ask me if I care! Whereas Baluchitherium was a rhinoceros so freakin’ big, it didn’t need a horn. Didn’t it scatter an entire Heathen army? I’d like to see anyone even try to do that with a Loxobagel. Like anything that’s new is automatically the best. Like naming baseball stadiums after some grubby little sponsor. Once upon a time the Edsel was new! And look how that wound up.
I am not going to rewrite The Thunder King just so I can bring in some boring elephant. And as for paleontological revisionism–boo, yabumya!