Triceratops prorsus is a species of herbivorous quadripedal dinosaur that, while extinct since the Mesozoic Era on the planet Earth, are vital and thriving part of the ecosystem of Eden. During Interregnums between iterations of the Clarkwoods Literary Universe, dinosaurs are not only alive and well—some serve as the kick-ass steeds of the most kick-ass society in all creation.
Domesticated by The Democratic Republic of the Reek, Triceratops have become an invaluable working animal. Used as mounts by the Reekian military to patrol the Vale of Thunder, Triceratops are one of the most feared species in the world. Though everyone knows the fierce beast won’t eat them, they also know that a Triceratops won’t hesitate to gore an intruder with one of its three horns—if given the command by its rider, of course.
Triceratops is characterized by the three horns which give it its name; a bony neck frill used in combat and courtship; and a thick, four-legged body.
It has a tail, too. I suppose that’s important. If, like, you care about tails or whatever. I mean, it’s no Ankylosaurus—but you can’t have all the cool dinosaur things all in one dinosaur, right? Otherwise, how would Hasbro have sold us all those different kinds of Dinobots when we were kids?
Genetics and Reproduction
According to Smithsonian Magazine, “Dinosaur sex must have followed the ‘Insert Tab A into Slot B’ game plan carried on by their modern-day descendants and cousins” such as male birds and crocodiles, who “have a penis that emerges…to deliver sperm.” But, as Smithsonian writer Riley Black goes on to say, “beyond the likely basic anatomy, things get a bit tricky.”
That said, in the case of Eden’s Triceratops, Reekian scientists have—like their fictional counterparts from Jurassic Park—taken all of that trickiness out of the equation. As part of their domestication program, they have genetically engineered all of their Triceratops mounts to be female—so that all reproduction happens within the safe and comfortable confines of Reekian labs.
Except for that one girl who got loose from her pen and then got loose with the lizards out there in the wilds of the valley. But representatives of the Reek try to keep that incident on the down-low, if you know what I mean.
As with most of Eden’s other extant dinosaur species, the bulk of Triceratops individuals were left to their own devices within the Vale of Thunder. But Reekian scientists, using genetic material gathered from 50 individuals, created a first generation of clones to begin the domestication process. Their goal? To create a subspecies which they could use as mounts to patrol the edges of the Vale, all in the name of keeping the dinosaurs in and everything else out.
A mashup of the universe’s most beautiful peaks makes the post-apocalyptic refugees in Eden feel all the feels.