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Rated: 13+ · Short Story · Friendship · #2161111
What is one thing you think every person should experience at least once in their life?
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“Where are we? Aren’t we there, yet?” Lilli swept her eyes across the desert horison. The wagon bounced and jared over the rocky trail making it hard to see anything. Sun drenched the small group of pioneers with sweat.

Missy McBride mopped at her brow with a sodden kerchief. “Are we lost? I haven’t seen a sign pointing us in any kind of direction for hours.” Their wilderness journey had wandered across many ports of call during what seemed like an endless sojourn, but no harbor in this wasteland looked more than mirage.

Aqua snapped the reins against the flies hovering over the cattles backs. The wagon groaned over another rock and all three women grabbed for whatever support was handy. “Remember what Joey’s favorite quote is,” Aqua’s flushed face looked towards an inner vision yet to be fulfilled by the outer one. “Make your goals as important as your breathing and you will get where you are going or die trying.”

More than the wagon groaned at that sharp reminder of past sins each had bounced over before arriving together in common cause. Slime rode up to regard the worn out women, reaching for the proffered ladle of warm water. Parched lips swelled with relief as the silvery liquid trickled down a dust clogged throat. “We promised and our word is our bond.”

The women’s heads nodded vaguely up and down as well as side by side. The rut the wagon wheels followed turned to shallow sand releasing their bobbing noggins. “We’re not complaining. We just want to finish up before we blow away in the hot desert wind. Isn’t that right girls?” Lilli never said anything without making it a question for the day.

LJ rode up to see what all the chattering was about. The spotted pony sniffed at the water barrel as the renowned scout of many a rewarding ride took turn at the ladle. One long hard swallow released her gasp, “Having jackrabbit stew again tonight. Not much more than long ears and lucky rabbit feet to chew on but enough to keep us going.”

The groans were becoming an outright song, somewhat out of tune but not released into the turgid air without vigor. CJ moved from behind on a bay colored steed the same dull color as the plain marching on forever. “One time in their life, everyone should experience the unknown with a group such as we are.”

Lilli looked around, eyes no longer on the distant lost search but proud of what lay around her. “Isn’t that just so true?”

The answering smiles returned to her took the heat and weariness right out of the day’s endless journey. What may have seemed like an empty desert to others was filled with life fulfilling friendship well earned in common cause.

A tribute to
Lilli Munster ☕️ 🧿
~ Aqua ~
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S.J - Not Around Much
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