“MR. PICKERING”

The dream came that night, the horrible, haunting memory of that fateful day too many years previously….

 

The sun shone brightly on the marble floor of the upper balcony of the palace.  Prince Ahmen-Tank-Ahmen paced back and forth in frustration.  His father, the Pharaoh of Egypt, lay dying in his room on the floor below and no doctor could cure him.  Even the Pharaoh’s closest friend, the wizard, alchemist, and best physician the palace had ever seen, could not seem to stop the progress of the disease that caused the once strong, almost ridiculously healthy monarch to turn  into a skeleton wracked by coughs and labored breathing.  The wizard had been working hard for weeks, attempting to find something that would ease the symptoms, if not cure the ailing man.  The prince, in his prime at the advanced age of twenty-eight, railed inwardly at the helplessness he felt, seeing his father waste away and not being able to do anything for him. A guard appeared at the door of the balcony.

 

“Prince Ahmen, your father wants to see you immediately,” he commanded.

 

“I’m coming! Lead the way!”

 

They hurried down to the older man’s bedroom.  He was positioned in a half-sitting position in the center of the huge bed, torso supported by many pillows.  The room was neither dark nor light.  The Prince approached his parent quietly.  The Pharaoh seemed not to know he was there, but as the Price stood at his bedside, he opened his eyes.    

 

“Ah, Prince Ahmen,” he whispered, his voice harsh from the coughing.  “Sit with me.  I can see….

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Bella Karoli

@authorbkaroli

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