How does heat make our hearts sane but our minds insane?
I wandered the streets the night of my birthday, seemingly lucky, the stars have shown themselves, glistening like reflecting water. I greet the elders with a bow and only show them my gratitude for the birthday gift of the scarce water left in the water jars.
The village will not last any longer after a few months. Luckily, my family has been known to survive with just a few drops of water each day. Keeping all the water supply at large for us to survive the 10 years and counting. The elders too, they survive with just 1 sip of water each day which shows our durability over the years. Quinn however, is somewhat weaker to needing water. He needs at least 2 sips to last a day, but sometimes he'll be gone for an entire day doing who knows what.
I finish my silent conversations with the elders and head out in the chilly night towards home. But Quinn suddenly shows up...
I tilt my head to question what he's wearing. He is wearing clothes other than the rags that our village wears. Quinn realizes my confusion and begins to speak actual dialogue that confuses me for a while because I haven't heard a human speak for so long other than the birthday songs I hear on a birthday. "Latisse I have something to ask of you, so please meet me by the bare well in the morning." He says, as he heads towards the elders home. Quinn had a strict aura around him as he headed in the elders room. But I left it alone for I was tired and needed to check up on my siblings...
I wake up early that morning, being it still cold, so I don't get heat haze along the way to the bare well. I tell my 2nd sibling to take care of the younger siblings while I discuss things with the snazzy looking Quinn. I get to the well just to see that Quinn has already arrived, but is napping in his fancier garments. I tap him awake to help him off the ground.
Definition of Heat Haze: Heat haze is a common disease that occurred after the drought began. It occurs when water levels are low and the air pressure around the eye gets weak and attacks the brain from the beginning of the iris. This is a term only related for the story.
"Ah, sorry you had to wake me up Latisse " Quinn says with a smile as he gets up from the side of the well. "I have something to ask of you and I can only ask for this favor from you." he continues with the same strict aura from the night before. I look at him quizzically wondering what he wants that could be so important. Quinn takes a deep breath, im not sure why but he begins to look flustered. Even though the heat haze hasn't begun yet. But he decides to stop breathing deeply and looks me in the eyes with complete seriousness and says "Will you marry me?"
I give him a very shocked and confused look, he wants MY hand in MARRIAGE? Giving off that look, Quinn interrupts me before I can silently reject him, explaining why he's suddenly asking me such a question.
"Latisse I think you already figured it out before, but I'm not from this oasis. I actually originate from a prospering kingdom quite the distance from here." Quinn says with a slight grimace. I think of the questions that everyone would think. (Why is he here then?)(Shouldn't he be in his kingdom then?) But before I decide to ask these questions, Quinn interrupts once more. "My father, the king of that kingdom sent me here years ago to investigate what was soon to become the drought. But as you know, nobody leaves this oasis due to the heat haze weather that occurs within the outskirts of this oasis. I am asking you marry me so I can give my father a legible reason to supply this weak village with a water supply once more."
I finally think of what I'm going to say after hearing this. I finally retort saying "That's very stupid Quinn, how will you get past the heat haze to that faraway kingdom? Even if I marry, I will be leaving my family in a dangerous place without supervision!" But I didn't say this for those reasons. I was secretly afraid of a marriage without love. How can he even propose that kind of thing when he doesn't love me, or when I have no affections for him either?
Quinn looks at me with ease after my report. "That's just the thing Quinn says, the well has a tunnel underground, I've been digging with the other villagers before they passed for the past few years until it reaches the kingdom. It's perfect now and I have asked the elders for the final key to get to the kingdom safely..."
I give another quizzical look. But Quinn interjects once more, being excited about his plan, "One of the elders makes glasses, and she knows how to make glasses so that the air that the heat haze doesn't reach our eyes from the tunnel below."
"So explain why I need to marry you in order for your plan to work." I retort again. I don't see why I need to marry this man for his plan. With his face, he could marry anyone from our village, I don't see why it had to be me.
Quinn gladly answers with a smile on his face. "Because my father, the king, needs a legible reason to help this village. You, Latisse, are the strongest with enduring low water levels. That and your face is appealing enough to convince my father that I would want to marry you if your clothes were touched up a bit."
I still didn't feel very good about it. Somehow, Quinn noticed and says that he will give me until that night to decide whether I should marry him or not. Also that I should look at the glasses, because he says some stupid thing about the glasses looking cute on me. I told him I'd consider it, and headed back to the village to watch my siblings...
I head towards the elders home and the 3rd elder Origail walks up to me and hands me the glasses frames with the spectacles inside. They looked fancy and I had forgotten that Origail was capable of such fine handiwork. I gripped the glasses lightly, considering Quinns offer... I head out of the elder's home and show my greetings to the siblings at home. My 2nd sibling or younger sister Dihala asks me what Quinn wanted. I explain my situation to the entire family at that point. They all urge me to go. Dihala quietly conveys "If he only wants your hand in marriage, that still means he "loves " you enough to ask for your assistance Latisse." I silently think over the situation as this all happens.
As the sun began to set. I grab the glasses that I left on the dinner table, and the tiny pouch with 5 sugar crackers that Dihala made for me, and I head out the door.
I head to the bare well again to see Quinn taking another nap. I tap him on the shoulder and his face brightens up like polaris on a clear night. "I'll go with you to your kingdom, and... I'll give you my hand in marriage, to end the drought."...
Soon after, my long vigil with Quinn and his kingdom, began.