We encountered no one today. Not even a lone sheep without its shepherd. Tomas returned to ask if we should head back into villages nearer the road.
At first, Elijah refused his suggestion for he believes our friends are held up somewhere in the desert. But he at last relented and said if Tomas was moved to do so, he was free to go off on his own.
Tomas, hesitated, for he wanted us to go together. And stated he would be very reluctant to be out of contact with us.
I was touched by his love and concern, and took pains to assure him that nothing untoward was going to happen to any of us. Remember whose we are.