(Cover Image & Source: Desert Storm, Arab Horse painting by David Lloyd Collins @ 1stdibs)

(continued from In the Kingdom of the Desert Rose (Part IX.)…)

…When the guardians have left the tavern, Moshea could finally find a little rest. But the owner of the tavern was very disappointed and frustrated on Moshea and the fact that she broke her promise to him. He said to her that she is no longer welcomed here, and that she has to leave as soon as possible. But she still didn’t know where to go. She wanted to leave the town, she wanted that so desperately.

But where to go, and how to pass through the main city’s gates and the king’s guardians, especially now when everybody knows that she is the murderer, when everybody is looking for her.

She didn’t had any idea.

But the owner of the tavern had. He will call his best long time friend that lives in the north of the kingdom, old lady that is now in the town, purchasing some things for her village.

So they arranged the meeting in the old tavern between the owner, Moshea and the old lady. After some negotiations, old lady agreed to transport Moshea to her village in her big wooden wagon, if Moshea agrees to help her in her big household in the village. Moshea didn’t had much choice, so she agreed to this imposed terms.

Early in the next morning, they loaded the wagon with a tons of leathers of the biggest quality, some porcelain vases, iron tools and other items of big value and transport them to the small village, in the poorest region of the kingdom, to the north, near the borders with hostile kingdom of the vicious Hittites.

When they were finally ready for the journey, they hid Moshea under a big pile of leathers, so that the guardians could not see her from the outside.

Old lady slowly climbed on the big wagon, pulled the ribbons that were connected to her two horses and head to the exit of the town of mighty Ptah.

Horses were slowly pulling the wagon when they arrived to the main gates, on this hot sunny day, when even the flies were resting in the shadows.

One of the guardians stopped the wagon, and ask the old lady if he can search the contents of the wagon. He said that they got the order to search all the wagons that get of of the town, while trying to find the missing girl that killed that young Bedouin.

Old lady said she had nothing against it, but if he has to search the wagon, he must be very careful not to destroy her items.

The young guardian looked at her wagon, and when he figured out that most of the wagon is full with dirty and smelly leathers, he let her go.

And it was very hot under all these leathers. It was intolerable to breathe. Moshea was slowly suffocating, and just before the guardian left the wagon, she had to get to some air, so she started to cough.

Guardians thought they heard something, but then the old lady said that she coughed, and that she is suffering from some sort of lung disease, that is infectious.

When the guardians heard about it, they instantly redrew themselves, and ordered the old lady to go away from the old town as soon as possible, and never to turn back again. They were very afraid of the infectious diseases, due to the fact that those kind of diseases killed a lot of city’s population in the last couple of decades, including some of the guardian’s close relatives.

To die from that contagious diseases was the most horrible thing that they could see in their lives. And it was not honourable to die from disease, but in the battle.

So, Moshea had a lot of luck travelling with that wise old woman. When they moved away from the city to the safest distance, old woman stopped the wagon and pulled Moshea from all that dirty leathers.

They were travelling for days through the big desert, the sand kingdom of death, eating and drinking only occasionaly, due to the fact that they didn’t had to much food and water supplies. They had a big accident along the way, when the horses were scared of the snake that passed by them. While trying to calm the horses, the old lady lost control over the ribbons and felt, along with Moshea and the wagon on the hot desert sand. Happily, they were not hurt, but the items that they were carrying were mostly destroyed. Some vases were cracked, and the most important thing, they lost a lot of water that they kept for this harsh and long journey.

Horses were not used to pull the wagons with such a heavy load and go through the hot desert. But they couldn’t use the camels. Camels were just to stubborn to pull the wagon. And they had one bigger problem, they couldn’t find a way to hide Moshea under the pile of leathers while putting them on the backs of this strong desert animals.

After a week or so, they finally left the big desert, and came, half starved and tired, in the vicinity of the mighty Sinai mountain, a true god in these harsh areas.

The villagers were happy to see the old lady alive, but they were unsatisfied with the broken contents of the wagon, and a little bit hostile to Moshea, the newcomer in their small village, at least for a first couple of days.

As was agreed, Moshea helped the old lady with her household, but she said she will no longer be a slave, and for nobody. The two ladies had an argue at some times, but they always found a way to solve their little problems. Old lady wanted for this young girl to get married, which was a proper thing to do, but Moshea always refused, remembering what she suffered in her past, raping and sodomising by the members of the slave merchants, and especially of that young restless Bedouin, for which she had to leave the town.

Everything was going well, till Moshea didn’t realised that she was pregnant, that she carries a baby for that young Bedouin that she had to kill, the same one who rape her on the filthy streets of Hut-Ka-Ptah.

At first she wanted to tell that to the old lady, and finally confess everything, the rape and the murder, but she knew that other villagers will not look at it with an approval. It was a shame to be raped in those days, and a woman carrying a baby and having no husband was considered a blasphemy, direct disobedience against the laws of their gods, which was in most cases penalised by the most painful death, burning on stake like an old witch.

So, she got up one early morning, took most of her stuff and ran outside the village, in the direction of the mighty mountain.

(to be continued…)