Edmontonia, E. M. Fulda, 1922
The day’s heat was a weight on the dreadnought. Even the evening with its orange-rimmed sky seemed to promise no relief from the heat. It had beat on him all day, a drum of humidity and stifling air. There was no breeze, no wind. The birds were silent, too hot to sing.
The scent of the pool had attracted him and his mate in the late afternoon, but it took them a long time to reach it. The sun threatened to bake them, pound their backs, and addle their brains. After it had set, they left the shade and lumbered to the water. The pond was still and a little scummy, but the dreadnought ignored the duckweed and algae, and dipped his face into the water. Sucking and gulping, he let the water run over his hot, armored face, then waded into the water to relieve sunstroke and sighed.