True Deserts

Prompt: Desert

dusty road with cyclysts

“This is a desert,” Marcus said. “Probably the only one up here?”

They were relaxing by a pool of deep brilliant blue water, outside their guest room at the Grey Owl Winery. There was no one else by the pool. The rest of the guests were sipping cold wine in the cool dim interior of the restaurant, or siesta-ing under ceiling fans in darkened apartments. But Marcus loved the heat, and Envy loved what Marcus loved.

Still, it was brutally hot and dry, and they watched a stream of tourists in cars approaching the winery, leaving a trail of the finest dust in billowing clouds behind them.

They were celebrating their first wedding anniversary. It was one of Envy’s most cherished memories, despite all that was to come.

“It is the northern end of the Sonoran desert,” Envy said. She took a sip of her soda and lime, from a long straw poked into a frosted glass. “But really, not a true desert. It feels like it today though,” she conceded.

Marcus threw his head back to get the last drop of beer from the bottle. Then he stood up from his lounger, and straddled Envy on hers.


“Let’s go inside,” Marcus said. “I want to hear more about true deserts.” He leaned over her and kissed her neck, under her ear.

She felt heat and wetness on her skin where he touched her.

The room was cool, air-conditioned, and dimly lit with the curtains drawn. They listened to Ray Charles, and were oblivious to the sun and heat, and the scent of the vineyard, and the sight of the tourists in rental cars crawling along the dusty road that led to the Grey Owl Winery, leaving clouds in their wake.