We wandered for miles. Harsh air collided with my skin, my feet stepped on waterlogged ground. Black clouds devoured what we used to call our home. Sudden downpours came unannounced, a reminder of our impermanence.
People spread in all directions, still naive enough to think they could escape the dust dense like fog. Uncertainty chilled the lungs of those who stayed.
Not a word slid down our parched tongues. Silence echoed in my ears, as if it had become an unwritten rule none of us dared to break. A sky thick with stars threatened to fall on us. I remember the fear in your eyes and how hard I tried to hide my own terror.
We walked through the barren fields. I gripped your fingers as we reached the top of the hill, where a single tree grew. We sat and leaned against its solid trunk, and watched the moon shine through the leafless branches.
Perhaps the last full moon we’d ever see.
I plucked up the courage to look at your face, pale in the moonlight, and saw a tear running down your cheek. We cried for the life we once knew.
I was scared of what tomorrow would bring, if there would be a tomorrow. But I confess, I didn’t care for the earth under my feet, or if the moon crashed on my head. I was sick with the feeling that tonight I was seeing your face for the last time.
We lay limply in the grass and listened to each other breathe. I could feel your uneasy heartbeat next to mine. The sky was about to fall.
We woke up in the middle of the end, where the ashes fell delicate like snowflakes. I felt for your hand.
We saw a new sunrise.