Day Seven Hundred Forty One #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

Tomas had been making as many trips back down the trail as forward. A fact that had not escaped Elijah’s notice.

Tomas just returned from a long absence in the rear and Elijah stopped him before he could set off into the advance again. Instead he dispatched him to trace our path all the way back to wherever Lung and Mei may be.

I accompanied him. And Elijah and the Captain set up camp to wait.

We came to the brook, a torrent of rushing water. And there ran into Lung descending off of the mountain. He begged us to return with him to help rescue Mei. She had slipped into a crevasse they had opened accidentally with the flamethrower.

Day Seven Hundred Thirty Eight #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

Mei remained at the rear of our troop, while Lung kept by Elijah’s side most of the day. He had many questions and appeared eager to listen to Elijah’s answers.

At one point I dropped back to keep her company. She remained taciturn to most of my comments. She only became animated either during those times when Tomas returned from the advance, or when she raised her rifle at the slightest hint of danger. And she almost blushed when Tomas joined us to inform me about a fork ahead in the road.

We left her company to confer with Elijah and the Captain about which direction we should take.

The main road continues paved. We will take the unpaved one.

Day Seven Hundred Ten #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

With the way open behind us, we were again called upon to press forward into the pass. The Captain and I had ended our fasts, but Elijah was continuing with his.

Other units pulled into the area and filled it up as we vacated it.

All was calm and peaceful and nothing but the silence of the mountains greeted our ears along the way.

The soldiers marching with us were noticeably ill at ease. And their leader called an end to our advance much earlier than I would have thought.

We later learned that this had been at the instigation of the Supreme Commander whose vehicle had caught up with the advance unit, also bearing Tomas, our very excited friend.

Day Four Hundred Thirty Eight #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

We are making much better progress. The road keeps within a stone’s throw of the cliff edge as it runs its course, passing a whole series of widely spaced villas. Noticeably it passes by those properties built on points of land that jut out towards the sea. Points that often cut off our advance when below on the beach and held us up until the tide retreated.

We have yet to encounter anyone on the road. Elijah thinks that everyone from out this way has moved into the city. The properties seem all well kept and cared for, so if Elijah is correct it could only have happened recently.

We picked up the pace upon sighting the ship in harbor.

Day Four Hundred Seventeen #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

The council at Elijah’s urging has made the decision to depart the plain. I had seen this coming and was glad for my expedition of the day before. I made a recommendation that we set out along the stream eastwards for as long as feasible.

After we dispersed out of the meeting we scattered to set the command in motion. Elijah and I returned to the Purser’s tent and assisted his family in their preparations for the move.

The Purser joined us after he had gotten the word out to his surrounding neighbors. He then asked me to remain with Mary and the children while he and Elijah traversed to the west side of the camp to lead the advance.

Day Two Hundred Sixty One #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

The image is forever etched in my mind’s eye. Those marks on the foreheads of the soldiers flashed and the consuming flames spread from there.  

It happened yesterday and twice today, as two more patrols tried to deny us access to the bridge or worse. Neither time did Elijah allow them to get close enough to harm us.

We paused our advance upon reaching the bridge. The area on the other side has changed. Gone are some of the ruins; new structures are rising throughout the core of the city.

It wasn’t long before a man under a flag of truce appeared at the other end of the bridge. Elijah allowed him to approach.

We have agreed to accompany him.