Chapter one: my life…
Aaron ran through the camp blowing his horn, it was time for the men to come and eat their supper. This was Aaron’s favorite time of day, for then Jidda, his grandmother would tell them a story. Aaron’s father had died in Israel; he had been stoned by the leaders of his family’s village. Aaron’s relatives believed the teachings of Jesus and so were persecuted by all leaders in their homeland. Aaron never understood why the others (As I will call surrounding countries who don’t like Christians) didn’t like Christians; couldn’t they all get along in peace?
The men had come in from tending the sheep and were now calling their families to dinner; after the prayer Jidda would tell them a story.
Her story today was about Abraham; Aaron loved the story of Abraham, he told me so himself. I should probably introduce myself now; I am Aaron cousin, Miriam.
Aaron loved the story of Abraham because he felt if applied to himself, being called to move from his homeland. Though we moved for a different reason; religious freedom, and it went the other way, we were leaving the Promised Land.
That night as I settled down to sleep, Aaron came and asked me if I would like to ride Ali tomorrow. Ali was the tallest of our horses and was only used for riding; the children would take turns riding him. I was surprised that Aaron would give up his turn.
My heart leapt when he asked me, I loved horses. I felt so strong and mighty atop a horse.
“Yes, I would,” I told him in reply. “I would love to, but don’t you want to?”
“I do, but Grandfather said I must help with the flocks today. It is hard work driving sheep and they needed an extra helper.” He said this with a high and mighty voice he loved to remind me he was almost a man at every chance.
“I will see if my father allows. Say goodnight to Sarah for me, please.”
The next morning since my father allowed, Aaron helped me onto Ali and handed me my satchel of clothing. Sarah decided to walk next to me today instead of with her family. Sarah was a quiet girl, she didn’t talk much, actually I had never heard her talk, but she often didn’t need to, her eyes would talk for her.
I would often get bored up on Ali so I would turn around and see what was behind me, I saw Aaron and waved, he saw me but was too busy to wave back. Since there was nothing to do I decided to ask of my father some of the scriptures to read, so I dug my heels into Ali’s sides and made my way to the back of the train of people. It took me a little while for him to come over so while I was waiting I tried to find Luke, my future (We basically were, but we hadn't had a ceremony) betrothed. *I know you are probably thinking it is weird that I am already betrothed, but betrothals can last a few years and like I said we weren’t officially betrothed. This betrothal was much different than some in our community, we already knew each other and were friends, I was very grateful for that! When I found him I waved and smiled, he smiled and waved back, he was working with Aaron herding sheep. Luke would often have to cover for Aaron since he couldn’t keep all his sheep in line; it was quite funny to watch.
Aaron will get it someday; he still has time till his Bar Mitzvah.
Finally Father came over to me and asked what I needed, “Would I be allowed to read some of the Scriptures while riding?”
“Which book would like?”
“I think I would like to read Exodus again, if I may, that is.”
“Of course my dearest Miriam, it is your book is it not?” He said with a laugh, his laugh sounded like bells I heard once.
“Toda Rabah, Abba!” he liked it so very much when I used Hebrew, the common language was Aramaic, it means thank you, Father)
“Bevakasha!” (You are welcome)
Soon I had settled into a comfortable position and was reading Exodus while guiding Ali. it isn’t as hard as it sounds, plus I had Sarah to help me from running into things. I had just finished chapter 12 when Ali came to an abrupt halt; I tried to see what the holdup was but there was too much in front of me. Then I heard it, the sound that would haunt me for the rest of my life, the battle cry of raiders. They were all around us, how they got there without us knowing I have no idea. I guess they thought that a caravan of our size would be carrying gold, well unless there was a horde I knew about then, well we didn’t have anything worth a raid. The raiders came at us from all sides; I panicked and in doing so let go of Ali’s reins, which was a bad idea, as soon as he felt the slack he bolted, I flew from the saddle straight into the waiting arms of a raider!