He took another step and the water was at his neck, it’s salty substance trickling into his mouth. All sound was gone beyond the beating of his own heart and the pumping of his lungs, in and out, in and out. In the far distance, at the horizon, he saw a break in the darkness as the storm clouds began to scatter. Closing his eyes, in his mind’s eye he saw:
24 YEARS OLD – NECK
Suddenly panicked, the idea struck him, Nahshon realized he had never put his head underwater. It seemed so unnatural. How would he breathe? What if his nose and mouth were plugged with water? He would die. He was submerged to his neck now. If his foot slipped on a rock at the bottom of the waterhole he could slip underwater and he knew he would die. Where was Malach? He was always here to show him the way, the right way. There was Alzbeta, the girl from the stock room who showed him how to wrap the loincloth. Why wouldn’t she help me now. She would know what to do. Where was the Egyptian? He said I was valuable. Surely, he wouldn’t want me to drown. And mother and father they loved me and my brother, Malach. Where is Malach? He would surely know what to do.
His whole body spasmed and he woke. He couldn’t ever remember such a bad dream before. He knew he was moments from drowning and death, but there was no one there to help him. Slowly he relaxed and tried to go back to sleep. He heard Malach’s soft breathing next to him. He did not see the sparkling glint in Malach’s eyes or the slight upturned creases at the corners of his lips.