We could smell water. Large cottonwood trees formed a green line above the tan landscape disclosing the winding path of a hidden stream. This was exactly what we were looking for. We ducked behind the ridge to avoid being seen. We talked with excitement and gave thanks. We were one of several scouting parties sent to find a new home suitable for our people. Despite years of prayers, the water and game in our ancestral territory were growing scarce. Our families were slowly perishing in the hot country seven days’ walk to the south.
Suddenly, an arrow slammed into my back. It’s sharp flint punched through my ribs and lodged in my sternum. I fell forward, gasping in shock. I heard shouts and the sound of bodies falling. My hands raked the ground, uselessly seeking my bow, uselessly seeking escape. Shadows moved over me, but I couldn’t see their sources. I thought urgently of my wife and young son until a second arrow tore through my heart.