This story came from a writing prompt on the subreddit r/writingprompts. The prompt was as follows:
“Several hundred years in the future, Humanity is nearing extinction. Animals like Dolphins, Dogs, and Elephants have evolved to human-level intelligence. Debates rage over weather humans should be preserved.”
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
“Absolutely not!” the chimp slammed his fists to the ground. “Let them die!” He barred his teeth. A heavy, meaty hand fell on his shoulder.
“Sit down Roth.” Naranja the orangutan easily pulled the smaller ape back to the pads they were sitting on atop the moving convoy. The structure swayed and rocked as it was pulled along by Talib, flapping his big ears to stay cool in the heat of the Southwest. There was an outcry of barks, squawks, and cries from what Roth said.
“Kill them all!” Bhat said as he splashed from a tank in the back of the convoy. Talib let out a mighty trumpet call which silenced them all. Ruby, a border collie, was the first to speak up after the pause.
“We should help them as they helped us.”
“Help? They kept me, I mean us, in a cage!” Roth again roared. Nar rolled his eyes and idly munched on an apple.
“They kept me in one too. They also fed me, and gave me medicine, told me they loved-” she cleared her throat before continuing. “They were good to us.”
“You were prisoners. You were their favorite prisoners but prisoners nevertheless.”
“Kill them all!” Bhat said again. Roth smiled that the dolphin agreed with him.
“They would abuse and experiment upon us,” Roth said.
“Remind me. When was the last time you got a needle that wasn’t a vaccination?” Nar chipped in.
“Whose side are you on?” Roth said as he turned to the orange ape.
“Don’t take another’s pain as your own.” Nar said and rubbed around his neck. Once again there was a pause.
“Kill them all!” Bhat shouted in the same chipper tone as he broke the surface.
“Do you even know what we’re talking about?” Ruby asked the dolphin in the tank.
“You. Would love to try you. Never had a bitch before.” Ruby ran over to the tank, growling. Bhat retreated back under.
“How dare you!” She barked. Nar’s hand laid on her back.
“He doesn’t understand, Ruby. Don’t take it personally.”
“Kill you all!” Bhat said as he rolled over on the surface. Nar shrugged.
“Why did we even pick him up from the ocean?” Ruby asked. Bhat’s head broke the surface.
“I wanted to come. I wanted to see land. You all seemed pretty cool and I appreciate you taking me along.” He pushed a button under the surface that dispensed his food.
“Don’t overeat.” Nar warned as he made his way back front.
“I won’t Mr. Naranja.” Ruby cast one last look as she followed Nar.
“Besides, even if I agreed. What’s to be done? They could come back. They brought back the buffalo and those really big cats,” Ruby said.
“Tigers,” Nar said.
“Tigers, right,” Ruby said.
“And they nearly wiped themselves out in the process. Fitting. They nearly killed all of us, so they paid us back in their lives. It’s only fair,” Roth said.
“If you want fair,” Talib spoke up in his booming voice, his huge head turned around to them as he continued his march. “Then we shouldn’t let them fade away. Everyone of us, humans tried to keep alive.”
“Some did, others killed when we got in their way,” Roth did.
“And how are we any different?” Talib asked. Roth was about to object but his argument died on his tongue. “I hear a settlement up ahead. Humans and others sounds like.”
“Really?!” Ruby looked ahead, her tail wagging.
“More! More!” Bhat said as he jumped from the water. The convoy slowly made their way to a town to trade and maybe pick some others up . . . or drop Bhat off hopefully.