Into the Desert

Kunai’s lower lip trembled. ‘What about my lifetime dream of being a sslave?’

Serq Neb-er-Tcher’s eyes widened in fear. The whole capital knew what happened every time Kunai questioned something. He must do everything in his power to... He should make absolutely sure...

The Slave Master wiggled his whip-wielding hand dismissively. ‘I’m sorry dear boy. You’ll never make a good slave—’

Kunai’s chin burrowed into his chest. His face reflected the limelight of shattered dreams.

‘—not in err... this life at least,’ The Slave Master recovered. ‘In fact, I’m willing to bet you’ll make an excellent slave in the next one! Here, here, pray take this with you. It’s a first-class ticket to the eternal Reed Fields of Aaru!’

Kunai looked down at the object in his hand. ‘You’se given me a knife.’ Fifteen sundialled minutes later, the cat fell out of the amphora.

‘Oh.’

So here was Kunai now, the dagger pressed against his bare chest, about to honour the last word of his Slave Master. Underrated, unappreciated, banished from the capital, sitting on a rock in the middle of the desert, about to turn himself into vulture feed. He sighed.

Nod a good sslave in sis life? thought Kunai, staring at his feet. He closed his eyes, allowing the desert wind to blow sand into his knitted beard one last time. The Egyptians always spoke of the plentiful and eternal Reed Fields of Aaru as the place where dreams come true. Must have been a truly amazing place, the afterlife. For once, no one seemed willing to come back from it.

Kunai took a deep breath and lifted the knife...

To be continued...

- Louise Blackwick

Advent 2019