The Traveler

story-a-week

Disclaimer: This short story (technically not a short story) is a part of a new project of mine, called God, The Devil, and a Man walk into a bar.

Caminante, no hay camino,
se hace camino al andar.
Antonio Machado

The traveler sat down on a sand dune and saw nothing. He heard nothing. He feared the worst. He had reached a truly godforsaken place: a vast, mournful pan of emptiness where anything sentient resented anything else that was alive. Every sun-scoured scrap of fauna had barbs, hooks or thorns, every animal had poison, paw or claw. Scorpions scuttled and snakes hissed and slithered while they went about their grisly business of survival. Even sand was an enemy. It burned his feet raw, it stinged his eyes and acted as a surrogate for pain.

His skin felt like scraped by sandpaper, his tongue was cloven to the roof…

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