touched_by_seshat: (Default)
Originally Started: November 8, 2003


{{I don't know where this story might end up going or what it might end up becoming. It started from a dream I had and it just went from there.

I welcome comments. Is it something I should just scrap, or would you be interested in seeing it continue?
}}


The sun is too bright, too hot on my face, and the sand is burning the bottoms of my feet. I don't have the protection boots like my captors did. Captors? Sort of, but not really. They are more like guards, some type of military brigade, I think. I am not used to the sun, and my skin has turned an angry shade of red. I have not dressed for desert travel. I am still wearing the short, very thin linen shift I had been wearing when these jackals---no offense, my Lord Anpu---had snatched me from my bath in the Temple.



Three days. It had been three days since these criminals had launched their raid on the Temple of Athyr in Thebes. Three days, and still no sign of the King's army---or of my two sisters.

As I walk, I raise my hand to touch the silver pendant that rested in the hollow of my throat. The pendant was in the shape of our beloved goddess, Pasht. The image of our goddess is enough to bring me comfort. However, it is the three brownish-gold stones that formed a triangle on her chest that draws my attention. No one knew where the necklaces had come from, only that my sisters and I had always had them.

Three stones for three sisters...

I can feel rage and concern radiating from two of the stones. Thank the Gods! My sisters were unharmed. More to the point---they are searching for me. I can feel the heat of their rage through the stones. The wrath of Niuserre would be terrible to behold. I could sense that my elder sister's anger had done nothing but build in the days since I had been taken...

...Three more passings of the day and night and still we move through the desert. I have no idea where they are taking me, or why we are moving so far from my home with such a sense of urgency.

I fear I shall never see my beloved sisters again. I do not think I will ever see our dear King and Queen again. I still do not understand their sudden panic, why they became so frightened for the safety of my sisters and I. They had suddenly became concerned that the armies of Egypt would not be enough to protect the three of us and keep us safe---we who had never been worried about our safety. We took no care for our own safety, the three of us. In our entire life, we had but served Goddess and Family. The King and Queen had raised us as their own, and in return we had pledged our swords to them.

So why had they become so concerned for us? They never got the chance to tell us---me. All I know is that they thought that by seperating us and hiding us in three different temples of Egypt they would be keeping us safe. I do not believe that they realized that our strength---our power from the gods---comes from the three of us being together. I do not blame them for this. They love us and were doing their best to protect us from whatever danger they thought they percieved coming towards us.

I am relieved to know that the Temples of Auset and Maftet went unmolested. Niuserre and Min'eyet will track these dogs of Set down. Even if I have already been sent to the land of our lord Ausar, my sisters will punish them for their cowardly and foolish actions. Kidnapping a daughter of Bennu was a very foolish thing, indeed. It is something they will learn in the most painful of ways that my sisters can devise...

...I am in the Temple of Athyr. I have been here only a few hours. I have just come out of the bath when I hear the screaming begin. They are screams of fear, but not of pain and this confuses me for an instant. The Temple is being attacked...but no is being hurt? This makes no sense and I think that there are no screams of pain because the priestesses are being murdered before they can react.

I pull on a linen shift, and reach for the customary garments of a Priestess of Athyr.

Two things happen at once.

The door crashes open forcefully to reveal an armed group of strangely dressed men---and a voice shouts a warning in my mind. **Amneris! Get out of the Temple!!** It is Niuserre, and for the first time in our lives, the warning comes too late.

But I am a daughter of the Bennu, a warrior of Sekhauit, a Priestess of Pasht, and a protector of the Royal Family. I leap for my sword, but he moves swifter than the wind. He catsches me in mid-air and clutches me to his chest. "Shesera," he whispers, shocking me with the use of my hidden name. I struggle and then I reach for his knife. No one touches a sister! As my hand closes over his knife, something hits me in the back of my head. In confusion, I watch his eyes go from joy, to anger shock, and then to anger as I fall down the tunnel of darkness that opens up beneath me
...

...I fall to my knees and then collapse on my side in the burning sands. I am sorry my sisters, but I can walk no further. As I lay there, waiting to greet Ausar, I can feel the air changing. A sweet, cool wind caresses my burned and battered body.

"Amneris," the wind sings to me. "Amneris, open your eyes. Look about you." I do as the wind commands. A fog has slipped around the encampment of my abductors. "Stand up, Amneris. Come to us, my sister."

I must be dreaming, for that is the voice of Min'eyet that I hear in the wind. I struggle to my feet, and stand, swaying weakly as I search the sands for my sisters. In the far distance, I hear the unmistakable sound of horses galloping across the deserts.

Almost afraid to hope, I tilt my head back and cry out to the sky. "Nui!? Tes!?"

The world seems as silent to me as a tomb. Then, racing towards me, I hear an answering cry, "Kaut!!"

I start to weep with joy. After two hands of days, my sisters have found me. I can see the outline of the army of our King coming towards me. Leading them, dressed as the warriors we are, are my sisters. The fury of Sekhauit burns in their eyes as they fly towards me.

"It is Oehen and A'aku!," one of kidnappers yell. "And the armies of Egypt!"

"Grab Shesera," the man who has tormented me with his familiar gray eyes shouts to his men.

I shake my head, taking trembling steps on weary legs towards my family. No, do not grab Shesera.

Arrows and spears start flying through the air around me as the battle commences. Then, when I am only a mere corridor's length from reuniting with my sisters, the world goes horribly wrong. I feel the pain spreading through my back and chest at the same time. I hear Min'eyet's agonizing scream. "AMNERIS!!" I ignore the pain. My little sister needs me. It is not until I feel myself fall that I realize it is me, and not Min'eyet, who has been hurt.

"SHESERA!!!! Let me go, you dog, you idiot! Shesera needs me! I have to get to her!"

"No, Sire. We must get you out of here. She is dead, but you must live. Live for her! Avenge her...but to avenge your Queen, you must live to fight another day."

I hear him screaming my name, even as he is urged to retreat in the face of the storm of Egypt. I close my eyes in silence.

I hear running feet, and then feel cool, gentle hands rolling my face out of the sand and pulling me up. I wince in pain and open my eyes.

"Niuserre," I whimper in confusion. "Sister...it burns..."

Niuserre's clear green eyes are bright and shiny. "It will be alright, Amneris. You will be fine, I promise you."

I can sense that Niuserre is working herself up into quite the glorious rage. Whether I live or die, Niuserre will make sure that my abductors suffer agonizing deaths. Whatever mercy my sisters might have shown them was destroyed with the shedding of my blood.

"I am dying," I say simply, trying to face this bravely as I am expected to, but there is a catch in my voice. I love Ausar and Anpu but I am not ready to go to them yet. "It's not supposed to be like this, is it Niuserre? They aren't supposed to be able to kill me, right?"

I know Niuserre is holding me cradled against her. She has always been there to help me and she has always held me through the dark times. "You will not die, Amneris," she says firmly. "Not today, and definitely not like this."

I hear someone drop to the ground beside us, and I turn my head to the side slightly. I see the concerned visage of our King with tears welling in his eyes. I have never seen the father of my soul weep, and it hurts that he has been brought to this by me.

"You have been hurt," he says with anger in his voice as he caresses my cheek gently. "I am sorry, Amneris. We thought we were protecting you. I promise you...I swear to Anpu that they will pay with their lives for the harm they have afflicted upon you." Min'eyet's grip tightens on my hand. I close my eyes, sheltered by the love of my sisters. The King continues speaking to my sisters. "She will rest with Kings...in my own tomb..."

I know that he means it to be a comfort to them, but it is not. I am not ready to leave---they are not ready to give me up.

"She will not die." Min'eyet says firmly.

"Niuserre," I force myself to speak. "The ones who took me..."

"The blood of those vipers of Set will stain the desert sands," she promises me.

"The leader..." I whisper.

"We will think of a speacial punishment for that one..." Min'eyet hisses.

I force my eyes open. "No." I do not know why, but I find myself pleading for his life. "He knows us," I explain. "Called me...Shesera." I hear a quick intake of breath...and then for the first and only time, I lie. "He shielded me from his men."

"What is his name?" Niuserre asks me gently.

I do not know how, but I know the answer to this question. "Sexem..." I whisper as I feel myself falling into darkness...

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Touched By Seshat

May 2007

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