We are fat with the waters of excess. Running a cool hand across my shoulder, I shudder not unpleasantly in the lukewarm breeze blowing from the ocean. It’s hard to even think that word, ocean. Gazing upon the rough, scarred skin of my hand, I remember the basin of cold water that had cooled it, not more than a few minutes ago. Those scars tell the story we are forcing ourselves to forget, a story whose verses, letters and songs claw at our throats like rivers of sand, pushing against the cliffs of our newly erected social structures.
The ocean, here on Black IV, is the ocean of dreams. The water, oh the sweet, beautiful water which even now brings a shudder of ecstasy to the small of my back, is ice-cold, remembering its mountain source. The people of Black IV are much the same: timid, aloof, cold, easy going. Nearly ten years ago they invited us here, to stay. They have enough land, they said. They have enough water, they said. They would welcome us. And, as eager children, newcomers to the Heart’s embrace, we gladly accepted.
But we grow fat with the waters of excess. I see my people’s eyes, I hear their well-disguised sighs. They miss the desert. Tempered within its horrible crucible, they know not what to do without it. Our terrible social muscles, the tendons and ligaments of family, tribe and Hold, move and coil beneath the skin we have sewn for ourselves. Clothed in Galactic customs, shrouded in their words which we have forced ourselves to don, we ache. We remember our home and we ache. We remember our suffering, we feel the rough maps of our scars, and we cry for return. But there is no return. Bow, they say. Drink deep of the water you have been given, they say. Rejoice, for we are the Sisterhood of Man, eternal, they say. And we murmur and nod our heads and drink deep of the water we have been given.
But we grow fat on these, the waters of excess. And I’ve had enough.I reach across with my hand, firmly grasping the crimson sash, and fasten it across my breasts. Only then is the armor donned, by my closest guard. I smile faintly at her, brushing away that strand of hair I love so. With a tight expression, she harshly tightens the last strap. Yes. This is who we are; taut, harsh, scarred, leather, sand. Sand piling into the room, into the street below.
“We are fat with the water of excess. It is time to bring the desert back”
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