There has always been a particular tranquility that accompanied the first light of morning. The crisp air, the sound of waking birds to greet the day, the glistening dew that gave the grass the look of frost despite the season.
Not every morning was met with such reverence but this one?
She actually smiled.
“Now there’s something I haven’t seen in a very long while…” a male voice said with calm joy. He watched the light from the sun spread itself across her dark skin. She always had the most beautiful golden sheen; a true daughter of the Egyptian sands.
But they were not in Egypt.
The year was 1932 and the pair overlooked the railings of the balcony to their stronghold in North Texas. This place was far greener than where she was raised but the same desert-kissed color of her skin would never dull. Her eyes were the only thing that betrayed her age.
He softly sat next to her along a stone rest and tilted his head to get a better look at her face. With a finger, he gently moved her head from her chin, lifting it to meet more of the light. She slowly turned her eyes to his, becoming a little more distant with every second.
“You’re thinking about them, aren’t you?” he asked, the spoken ancient Egyptian words cutting into her soul.
“Yes,” she replied flatly before turning back to the sun to watch it rise. “And you.”
He furrowed his brow.
“We have been here for so long...Many times I have contemplated leaving...finally walking through the gate to Sanctuary. Setting you free to be with your brothers,” she sighed heavily. “But every time...”
Without realizing it, he turned his body away from the sunlight to face the brick wall of the mansion and only continued to listen.
“I would be lying if I said I didn’t eventually want to go home,” the bass of his voice barely above a whisper was soothing despite the growing despair between the two of them. “And I do wish you’d trust those you have brought into our ranks to carry on. I also understand why you don’t…”
Glaring, he lifted his head to the sky and distorted his face as if in disgust.
She let her head fall against his shoulder, a gesture she hadn’t done in what felt like years. Her jet black hair contrasted against his own lighter tan skin as it cascaded elegantly along his arm. He turned and rested his chin on top of the crown of her head and reached up with his other hand to run it along her back.
Her shoulders began to tremble slightly.
“Do you remember when my brother accidentally destroyed one of Pharoah’s boats?” she giggled, turning her face into his shoulder. His eyes went wide for a moment before he finally recalled the scene.
“Ah, yes. And then jumped out, nearly getting eaten by a crocodile,” he chortled.
“He was trying so hard to steer the stupid thing and ran it right into a rock,” she laughed a little harder, rocking back. “Father was furious.”
“But Khafre thought it was amusing, did he not?”
“I think he laughed for a week,” she stood, patted the dust from her dress and crossed her arms at him. His eyes filled with hope and grinned as wide as he could.
“You should tell your story…”
“Who would listen? I can barely keep these people’s attention for even the direst of situations…and they’re always fighting amongst themselves...” she huffed.
His face dropped.
“Celeste would listen,” he said with an assured head nod. “I think your experiences would benefit her most of all. Specifically, how she should be unafraid of the power that has made itself available to her. How uncharted territory should be met with boldness...”
“You really have been here too long.”
But he wasn’t wrong.
She faced the sun once again as it continued to rise and knew that what they were facing at that moment was critical and just as critical as her own moment thousands of years ago. It has been far too long since last she related the story of her life but, perhaps, now was a good time to do just that.