I trudge through this desert alone, wanting, and fearless. I barely feel alive out here. When will my suffering end? Ha, only death could now. I feel hazy drowsy Desert sands take care of my corpse. Bury it well so the next poor soul to become trapped here does not lose hope of salvation, but for gazing upon my bones and toiled flesh. I fall into the cushion of dust. This shall be my bed, my rest of suffering

Mother, ease my judgment.

---

I wake why? My ears hear no tornado, my skin feels no harshness at all from the winds. Something obnoxious and cold touches my mouth, and in pours liquid gold. My eyes shoot open and my hacking wastes the water on the floor. Aah, why did that have to happen?!

I look to my side. A man is here, a real person! One of such I have not glanced in weeks ! I try to say my thanks

Nothing is said. My mouth opens, but my words stop in my throat. No, why? What is this?! The desert took my voice, upon all it has taken until now!

I cannot say them, so my gratitude can only be said through my actions. I take my arms and wrap them around my saviors chest. My lips mouth the soundless things I need to convey. With a pat on the head, this person tells me it s all okay. He understands me without wording. Come think of it, he has not spoken either. Perhaps the desert has inflicted this fate on him as well.

He sets me back where he had me, and walks away from my location. Now I look around, this isn t a shelter at all, really. It seems to be a flimsy tent, held between desert trees ah! I see an oasis outside, as he opens the flap door. So that s where we are. I m glad for a source of water.

The man I realized he s not actually as old as he looks. He s about my age, a boy. He is covered in small scratches and bruises, probably from being out here too long. His hair is jet black and fairly long, his eyes are dull. He s so composed, though he bears only a beaten white cloth for clothing. He comes back with a jug of water and pat s me on the head again. I don t really allow people to touch me, but this boy saved my life.

He pours the water into a shabby basin and damps a cloth with it. Without warning (How could he, as a mute?) he daubs my face clean of soot and dirt. He works down and wipes my collar, pushing down my shirting slightly just enough to see the wounds all over my chest. With a look of deep concern he rips down the cloths tied around me, and gapes at this ghastly body of mine the one inflicted on me before I was forced out into this hellish storm of Egyptian desert.

He makes the dearest look of sorrow for me. Somewhat contrary to what you do with a wounded person, he flings himself on me and starts licking at my scars!

I just realized the way this man acts is rather like a cat. The way he s arching over as he licks my cuts in the licks themselves are like a housecat drinking its milk his thick hair is soft in my fingers, like petting a cat

He looks up. Ah, wait, why was I petting him?! Was he that much like a cat that I got the compulsion to stroke him?

Suddenly the feline-like tongue pervades my own. Ah, this child is too strange! I m grateful, but I must go back to Cairo I cannot return in such embarrassment!

He seems startled that I pushed him off. He looks apologetic, but not ashamed. Perhaps he is not aware of my position. Now I suddenly realize his skin is not of an Egyptians, he is much too pale nor must he have been in this desert long! This train of thought is cut short. Is he molesting me? No, it s not so violent. It s pleasant

-------

I m cold and one becomes in a desert at night. When naked. I have no idea what I ve done, really. Or why. I pull my clothes on quickly and go outside.

There s a path out here! A path to civilization, maybe?! My hope is renewed, I take one look back at the strange man, and then move forward, my people are important and every day I ve been gone has been more dangerous. I hope this is the right way.

Goodbye.

What was that? The desert? My imagination

Mother, protect your loyal son, your peoples, and the one man in the desert. Even if I can t speak, I can move on, right? He doesn t seem held back...