In the weeks leading up to the launch of my novel, We Called Him Yeshua, I’ve been posting the first several chapters. Last week I posted chapter 4. Today I give you the fifth chapter, and from there you can navigate to earlier chapters if you like.
“Neri, over here, I’m thirsty,” I tugged on his sleeve and pulled him toward an inn on the edge of the square. Several hours after leaving the village where I found Neri, we arrived at another town … a larger town.
“Good, I’m hungry,” Neri replied.
We climbed a few steps to a collection of low tables scattered over a raised terrace. A canopy of different colored fabric provided shade, casting a faded rainbow shadow all around us. We selected a table near the edge of the terrace.
“Hungry Scamper?” Neri said, lifting Ben off his shoulders and dropping him on a cushion.
As I sat down, Ben crawled into my lap and fell asleep. I smiled as I caressed Ben’s soft brown hair, comforted by the idea I’d made the right decision bringing him with me. The town, on the south shore of the lake, was the farthest from home I’d ever been. The distance helped me feel safer.
The innkeeper walked over, knelt on a cushion, rested both hands on our table, and said, “Well?”
“Tea please,” I replied, as Neri gazed at the menu painted on the wall. He had the look of love in his eyes.
“Let’s see … I’ll have a large plate of fried locusts, the fish stew, goat milk cheese, some of the lentil with curry, barley bread, charoset, and Egyptian beer.”
“No charoset,” the innkeeper said, as he stood and left.
“A bit hungry Neri?”
“A little. But, no charoset!”
The crowd below us grew, all straining to see Yeshua as he worked his way toward the center of the square. There must have been hundreds of them. Yeshua was more popular than I’d thought. A strange feeling stirred my stomach and rose in my chest—I think I knew, but refused to admit what it was.
Copyright CJ Penn, 2020