A short man and his child were crossing the desert. The boy carried a fistful of streamers, tickling his ankles with colours of home; the man, a pack bursting with biscuits and water.
Soon they met a woman, stooped in shadow. “Water,” she beseeched, hands outstretched. “Food.” The man feared thirst, but his conscience more. He reached for a canteen. But it was empty, and the next, and no crumb remained. When he turned back, the woman was licking her lips, rubbing her stomach.
The short man and the boy went on across the desert, carrying nothing but colours now.