Africa's Lost Children - Part Two - Re-birth, Death and Loss
I woke a while after dawn. Silver tendrils of sunshine played with the dust motes in the cabin. The air smelt of tar, diesel, old wood and brine.
The boat was gently chugging as she crossed the glassy sea.
Pulling into a river mouth surrounded by steep cliffs the boat pulled up the river and stopped about half a mile up by a square jetty.
The other children were sleeping, my elder half brother Noel, scardy cat, James my Wildcat Twin, Alex the dark one and Cordelia the dark haired baby. Plus Annabel, Martha's 8 year old daughter, and Jackson and Shadrack (Moses's two boys) were also with us.
James woke and shook out his blond curls. He gazed into my eyes and nodded.
"Wake up Children, it's time to go," said Moses.
Silently we left the boat and started to hike into the forest at the edge of the gorge. Higher and higher we climbed until the boat looked like a toy in the distance.
James and I led the way next to Moses. I glanced over at him, he kept walking on, his chin jutted in determination and a fierce gleam in his eyes.
We reached a small clearing at last, at the side were tents and there was a fire with a large coffee pot.
A bedraggled band drifted into the campsite and children sat down where-ever they stood. James sat by the fire, mesmerised by the flames. It was late afternoon.
My Mother swept into the clearing, her arms outstretched. My Father was close at her heels. Her pale copper hair caught the fading afternoon sun's rays and flashed golden and red. My father with his dark hair and dark blue eyes swept me up in his arms.
"Everything all right Kitty?"
I wriggled in his arms and he pulled me tighter.
"Aunt Joy," I whispered, nestling into his neck.
"I know, you will all be safe now, I promise. We are moving back to the States tonight."
I lay, listening to the reassuring beat of his heart. At last we would all be together, and free.
"I know you love Africa, Kitty, but it's not safe for us here anymore. In fact it hasn't been that safe for a while, that's why we sent you all to Mozambique. That was far from safe either."
"It's the only way honey, if there was any way we could stay, I would see to that,"
I slid my arms tighter around his neck and buried my face in his chest.
Food was cooking over the camp fires and soon the fragrant smells of roasting rabbit stew filled the air.
We ate and fell asleep where we were, all curled up around the campfire.
The stars were close t