|Archaeologist Anson Hunter had gone to bed with Intelligence agencies before, but never quite like this|
“Good night,” she said.
“I can’t sleep. Know any good Gentile jokes?”
“There’s something I have to ask you, Zara Margolin. Do you feel any love for Mother Nile? I know this is a lake we’re on, but navigators follow the old basin of the Nile for safety, so I feel we’re still cruising the past.”
“Of course I love Egypt. I was born in Alexandria.”
“Yes, but beyond the accident of your birthplace. Think of the story of Israel in the Torah. The land of the Nile gave succour to your people throughout history, feeding you in periods of famine. Think of the sons of Jacob sent to Egypt for food, of Joseph sold into slavery and favoured by pharaoh. And then there is Moses, drawn out of the Nile by pharaoh’s daughter. You could say that Mother Nile gave birth to Israel, complete with labour pains courtesy of Rameses.”
“You’re spiritually linked with Egypt. Like me.”
“I’m happy to say I am not like you, spiritually or in any other way.” She sat up and fluffed up her pillow, finally punching the ends together vigorously. “I’m more focused than you and I don’t sit on the fence,” she said. “You claim to be one who takes ancient beliefs seriously. But then you pursue this quest, regardless, and you look down on academics and call them dispassionate people who don’t engage experientially with such matters.”
She turned away, dark hair cascading on the pillow.
He was spending the night in a cabin with an unfathomable daughter of Israel who was as remote and somehow familiar as any ancient Egyptian beauty who’d ever looked at him sideways from a painted wall of a tomb. What had happened to the girl who’d brightened his day in a London bookshop?
Zara, Zara, Zara.
From The Ibis Apocalypse, 3rd in the Egypt adventure fiction trilogy - (Amazon Kindle)