Kelly's Quickies 50 - Volumes 01 to 50
Kelly's Quickies 50 - Volumes 01 to 50
Beside the Mara River, Western Kenya
Twilight is short near the equator, daylight to darkness in less than half an hour... and they only just managed to get the tents erected before night caught them. Job had built a fire quickly because neither man ever forgot that they were far from the comparative safety of Nairobi or Nakuru or Narok, in those places the predators stalked the night on two legs. Out in the bush the danger came on four, ever hungry, always shy, but still opportunists who became bold after sundown. The fire was a statement of sorts... a declaration, beware, do not come closer! And it worked, although on many nights they had witnessed the glow of firelight reflected from unblinking eyes.
"Jackal." Job assured, Duncan wasn't so sure, more probably hyena or lions, the eyes were too far from the ground to be the diminutive fox-like skulkers.
As he had driven across to the river bed he had scanned the terrain for signs, stopping frequently to investigate what looked like old camp sites, and reluctantly admitting that most had probably been left my Masai herdsmen.
He had reached the Mara river sooner than expected, but turned away before selecting his camp site. Years of experience told him that a river side camp may have sounded romantic, but he wasn't out there specifically for romance (although he remained hopeful), and camping close to the river would open himself and Job to greater perils, namely the giant river horses, the hippopotamus. Fearsome creatures avoided by all with sense, possessing a foul temper and massive jaws powerful enough to bite a man clean in half just for the fun of it. The hippo's would leave the water during the cool of night to graze... and Duncan knew well enough to camp far from possible confrontation.
They had pitched their tents in what appeared to be a natural hollow surrounded by jagged rocks and flat topped thorny acacia trees, near the centre he had discovered a quite recently abandoned cooking fire, the red earth charred black within a circle of stones.
"It could be them!" He turned a charred bone in the ashes.
Job shook his head. "Herdsmen." he declared with an air of confidence, but declined to elaborate choosing to change the subject onto more pressing camp matters.
Duncan let it drop, sometimes you had to take things on face value rather than constantly demand justification... and it really didn't matter that much, if the fire had been lit by his tribe... they were long gone now!
The sounds of the African bush soothed, and Duncan relaxed. Job had prepared an infusion, something that he did most nights. He guarded the recipe jealously refusing to even hint at the composition, which saddened his boss, the slightly bitter tasting concoction eased away the stresses and worries of life wonderfully, and after a mug Duncan would take himself to his tent or find that he had slept sitting by the fire. But is wasn't just the sedative qualities that he enjoyed most... he always found that after taking Job's brew his dreams of her were more vivid and in a strange way... real.
He felt her skin under his fingers more clearly, he heard her husky African accent as she soothed him in a strange dialect mixed with words in English and Swahili, her voice so clear and close. But what he loved most about the infusion... it made sex with her more than virtual or imaginary, he felt her, smelt her, tasted her... it gave him hope that one day he would actually experience her for himself.
As usual he waited for it to cool, it wasn't a drink to sip and savour... more like a tonic to down in a couple of gulps, and he took a rare nip of whisky while he waited.
"Is that the glow of a fire in the distance?" he strained his eyes as he peered into the darkness, a flickering had drawn his attention, like fire light reflected from a canopy of branches.