Day One Thousand Two Hundred Twenty One #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

We passed some tense hours awaiting the return of the Captain and Mawuli. (Which I sought to relieve by intercession). We were aware that their task might require a full day’s travel to accomplish. But as we were sure that they were aware of the advance of the army of the North too, our hope was that they would exercise the ultimate in caution.

Both, thankfully, did return safely – and with a fresh supply of water – from a situation that was even more harrowing than we had imagined.

Like we had surmised, they were aware of the northern army. And reached the well without being detected. But they were nearly trapped there when the army of the East rolled through.

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Day One Thousand Two Hundred Twenty #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

Mr. Kagi has taken over a couple of my watches at the lookout point with Tomas. Between them they discussed a couple of ideas, the results of which he brought to Elijah and me.

The well to which Sy once led us, is still viable and not too far distant. So, we thought it prudent to send the Captain and Mawuli ahead to replenish our supply of water.

No sooner had they departed when Tomas brought news of movement off on the horizon.

Mr. Kagi is certain they are the advance units of the army of the North. He finds that circumstance puzzling for the plan he was privy to, granted the advance position to the army of the East.

Day One Thousand One Hundred Twenty Six #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

All quiet today on the plain. No sign of conflict by sight or sound. By the end of the day it had been so quiet we had relaxed our vigil, especially when we sighted what we took to be the halfway point of our journey – the well to which Sy had led us – the one whose water was too low to access.

To our relief its water table had risen and we easily refilled our water skins.

Elijah volunteered for the first watch but I had no sooner turned in when he raised the alarm.

Alarm turned to joy when we recognized our intruder was our friend Reuben whom we first knew as a guard in the prison near Jerusalem.

Day One Thousand One Hundred Twenty Two #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

As we stopped last night on the first leg of our trek, my thoughts circled our final destination. And I wondered if our friends had made it safely by their different routes to the hiding place.

Setting out this morning they again held my thoughts. Elijah must have been musing on the same theme, for he spontaneously began to intercede for our friends, by name. I joined in as we walked along.

Thereby, the time passed quickly, and it seemed, the miles put behind us mounted even faster.

We slowed as we came across signs of activity close to the well we had uncovered on our outbound journey.

We realized they were only tanker truck tracks upon gaining the well.

Day One Thousand Seventy Seven #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

Come morning we had second thoughts about our decision to stay put. The rear guard of the world government forces were in our view, but they had halted to stave off multiple attacks by small units of the army of the East.

The danger, we realized, was that these small units in their efforts to flank the retreating army may come across our position.

Elijah ordered us to return to the area of the restored well. From there we could retrace Sy and Mawuli’s route to our next jumping off point.

We passed the other well on the way and found it no longer protected. We ignored it and continued on.

And that is how we encountered Mei’s comrade, Lung.

Day One Thousand Seventy Five #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

Mawuli wanted to know if the army’s retreat meant that we were to go back also.

Everyone else shared their impression that our mission had not concluded. Decidedly we will press on.

Today we saw that the retreating army was that of the world government. And Elijah spoke the word, “Babylon has fallen.”

That’s when Elam shared his revelation – the motorcade we had spotted yesterday must have been carrying Stan.

We also decided to stay put for the day. With so much going on before us it seemed the much safer course.

Mawuli and Sy did go out, however. They felt their way further to the east to look for gaps, then planned a swing back to the restored well.

Day One Thousand Seventy Three #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

We wandered the rest of the day without striking Sy’s well. I could tell his frustration was mounting at his inability to locate it.

Finally Elijah signaled for a halt in an area we all judged fit for a camp.

Sy, however, continued to roam about, muttering he was sure it was near at hand. The next morning the Captain stumbled upon it. Actually he tripped and fell on his face.

The well had been filled in, packed with rocks. We gathered around it on our knees to remove them. Only to discover the water there had been befouled too. Unfit to drink.

Elijah took up his staff and stirred the water with its tip, drawing out all the impurities.

Day One Thousand Seventy Two #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

Mawuli accompanied Sy on a side trip to check out a well. They found it easily enough, but so had an army unit. In fact, it looked to be a more or less permanent arrangement.

From what they could tell water was present, just no way to get to it. Tire tracks run to and from the site, and the soldiers looked to be expecting something – probably a tanker truck.

Sy could make out no flag or other designation that would tell us whose they are. Though who they are made little difference to our next decision. For we chose to avoid them and agreed to press further from our current path to another well Sy believes he alone knows.

Day One Thousand Sixty Nine #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

Our movements we feel were well beyond the army’s patrols. And the lack of drones too, was a comfort.  All the more so as we came down from the hills and onto the plain.

Sy directed us to a well by midday, but it proved a disappointment. He said the water was simply too deep to reach.

Thankfully our need is far from pressing. There was a point after Sy had spoken when I looked to Elijah, but he shook his head, so I knew that it was not quite the time.

Elam was a great help. For he had driven his tanker truck through this area many times, and knew the best places to pass over those routes undetected.

Day One Thousand Five #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

Tomas and Jezer passed through on their last trip from the well. The last until the drought ends or a miracle intervenes – it would take one in Tomas’s estimation.

Jezer thinks it may recover before then.

But now it is apparent we shall need to move on as soon as possible.

Mawuli and I met with his father to calculate how long our water will last. We concluded that we must begin to ration.

The matter had me thinking back to that snowfall in the desert. It had not been what I prayed for, but it was what we needed.

I was kept so busy over these issues that I forgot to discuss my suspicions with Elijah about the drone.