Sample Sunday: Tourist Trap

"Flame?" Roi whispered.

            "It's still dark out," she replied, thick-tongued with sleep. "You want?" She shifted her hips toward him and he lifted his hand to her face, stroking a stray tendril of hair back from her forehead.

            "Maybe after," he chuckled. "Look across the river."

            She rolled away from him, toward the river, and gasped in delight. The waning moon was hidden from where they lay, but it shone full on the cliffs across the river, and even lit the water's edge. "Like they're made of silver," she said softly "with a river of carved glass. Oh, Roi, it's beautiful. Thank you for sharing it with me."

            "Look lower," he said softly, "near the mouth of that wide side canyon just upstream from us. The grassy bar we noticed earlier."

            Flame shifted her attention, caught movement, and blinked a time or two to bring the moving creatures into focus. "Wild horses," she breathed, "but they're so dainty. And they're not striped like the ones we've seen so far. Silver, with dark points. Oh, look at the baby!" She felt her expression shifting into a fatuous smile, but she didn't mind. Roi wouldn't care.

            "I suspect gold, in the sunlight," Roi replied softly. "And they're so tiny! I noticed the vegetation on that bar, and I'd swear it's no more than ankle deep. But it's halfway to their knees."

            Flame sighed happily and wiggled back against Roi's chest. "Wouldn't it be fun to have one for a pet?" she said, and felt his laughter vibrate through her body. "Well, it would," she said as she turned back to face him and pulled his face down to hers.

         Later, when they were both almost asleep, she thought how wonderfully peaceful the canyon was.