Words written on the wind
Gelo R. Fleisher
Ahmiz let his eyes flutter shut as a ray of sunlight hit his face. He inhaled deeply and leaned back in the saddle, taut muscles relaxing as a sensation of warmth began to soak through his ruddy flesh.
Behind him, Jena's camel bleated and stamped its feet as it came to a halt. He ignored it, enjoying the feeling of the sun across his skin. The camel bleated again and there was a light tug on his robe. Cracking his eyes open in annoyance, he saw Jena at his side. A fine sheen of dust covered the young girl's features and bald head, putting into contrast her black lips and the scars running across her cheeks and throat. She signed with gloved hands. The sun is up. We have to go.
Ahmiz let out his breath and gazed out over the distant sun. "Soon child, soon. Let me enjoy the sunrise."
Sunlight was crowning over the distant tips of the mountain range, changing the red sandstone into the color of amber, fingers of light spilling out through the valley and stretching out towards them.
She rolled her eyes and pouted. There's too much sand here now, I don't like it anymore.
Ahmiz nodded but didn't move. "There's no hurry, we found what we were looking for." He patted the bulky saddle bag of his camel. "And Oska will still be waiting for you when we get back home."
Jena blushed and looked away, blinking her olive eyes rapidly.
The sunlight had reached the cliffs behind them now, the rocky tips turning bronze in the growing light. Jena was right; there was sand everywhere. He could hear it, falling down the sides of the cliffs, in thin waterfalls, a set of gentle, unending dribbles. The sun continued to move and soon handfuls of the grains were being lit by the sharp morning light, glittering like motes from a dying fire as they tumbled down off the cliffs before fading back to the color of ash as the shrinking shadows covered them again.
The sun continued to stretch and and Ahmiz could see sheets of sand whisking off the tips of the dunes in thin diaphanous sheets, slowly settling over the ruins of the valley. The force projector that had kept the desert at bay was safely in his saddlebag now, the warriors who had defended it lay where he had slain them in the valley below. Now the dust was coming, and there was nothing left but to leave.
Jena's hands moved. Where shall we go now? To the north?
Ahmiz sighed and jabbed his camel with his heels. "Yes girl, now to the north."