The Book of Lifetimes

An old woman in the past, a confused teen in the present, a young child in the future and the book of lifetimes all through out. A timeless tale of hope and dreams

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1. Past

 

  In the distance something cawed, the sound echoed down the cliffs and reached her ears as a frightening chorus of screeches. She halted their fevered march and slid to the ground in a fluid crouch, her tribe copying her movements. She listened, the sound of the slow trickle of the stream and the ragged breathing in her own chest was all that followed the ominous caw. The cliffs omnipresent, loomed into the sky on either side of the gorge and followed the stream down as far as the eye could see. The sun belted down on them, a warning of the drought to come.

  She looked back at her tribe and saw the exhaustion plain on their faces, yet still they followed her and her desperate charge into the summer heat. She was their elder, their leader, they depended on her to make the right choices, and she always had. But would this be her last expedition? Had she made it their last expedition as well? She gestured for everyone to get a drink and raked her fingers through her flame-orange hair peppered with grey as she pondered their situation.

  If she went back she would be sentencing them to slowly starve and thirst, if she stayed their deaths would just be quickened.

 But forwards, into the unknown, that might give us a chance, she thought, just maybe.

  She made sure she kept her head up and conveyed a confident look, contradicting all of the doubts that clouded her mind. She knelt next to her tribe members and drank from the stream. The water was shallow and the rocks at the bottom of the stream were smooth under her touch. The rocks shifted as she drank, and soon she felt something rough at the bottom of the stream. Awed, she found an edge to the mysterious object and found it to be a hide. Pictograms covered the thick hide and depicted a land of plenty downstream. An oasis to their desert landscape.

  She began to cry happy tears that washed the dust from her cheeks. Her tribe gathered silently around her, and looked at the hope she held in her hands. They too wept with joy and smiled cracked lips, their hopes renewed.

 

This canvas could well have been their past, present and future, it was their hope.

 

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