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Illustrations by

Yan Nascimbene

 

    The pool was empty except for the mangled rafters and chunks of roof. Tim and Dr. Solangi stared at the small puddles on the bottom. Then they gazed at the peaceful waters of the Gulf of Mexico.

    “Maybe the dolphins survived,” Dr. Solangi said.

    Tim thought, How could they live through a roof falling onto their heads--or the force of a forty-foot tidal wave?

    “They could be out there,” Dr. Solangi continued, “waiting for us. Tim, how much time do we have?”

 

    A dolphin head popped out of the water. It was covered with scratches.

    “Elijah?” Tim gasped. A second head appeared. Marci pointed and almost fell out of the boat.

    “It’s Noah!”

    “There’s Kelly!”

    “Look! Toni!”

    “There’s Shelley!”

    “Jill! Everyone, it’s Jill!”

    “Tamra! Oh, Tamra!”

     Someone asked, “Where’s Jackie?” Tim felt the other trainers tun toward him. He cleared his throat. Poor Jackie, he thought. She was just too old. His eyes filled with tears. Everyone looked away.

    An eighth dolphin surfaced.