All the usual warnings go here: this is unedited and raw, and I post here for the sake of accountability. Enjoy!
If we had time,friend… if we had time, I would give you all the details of these days – of the trip down south past the mountains, of our journey into the continent of Africa and the things we saw there. Of the frightening times passing through land scoured by poison wind and virulent fog, swirls of plague-smoke swallowing all and stopping only at the edges of the Salted Road as though hitting a solid wall.
Stars still shone above the Salted Road, a black and diamond strip of glory reminding of simpler times.
We walked the road, and we sang our songs, we sold our goods and we traded smiles. We carried stories from town to town, transmitting parables like pathogens, connecting people via the thin threads of empathy and imagination who would otherwise never meet.
And I learned.
I did not learn well. I did not learn quickly. I missed those I’d left behind, and hoped they made it to Az’Kabek.But unlike my child, they were not lost. I would see them again when I returned to that city.
And we would return. Sarin promised me, and I did not then know enough to question the word of a friend.