The ink stain moved east inexorably, its tentacles prodding north and south, making it hard for general Rimyar to stay unnoticed. Luckily the desert army knew the desert well so they vanished when it was needed.
‘There,’ Pointed Baringo. ‘A detachment is going south. We can cut it off and destroy them.’
Rimyar nodded. ‘That’s all we can do. Chipping away at the edges without causing any real damage.’
‘We caused them to stop for three days after your raid on the supply train,’ Baringo smiled, keeping up hope.
‘That we did. We need another move like that,’ Rimyar said.
‘The weather is changing,’ Baringo smiled widely. ‘The wind is shifting to the east.’
Rimyar’s face lit up. ‘You are right. I had not noticed, but that will definitely give us the opportunity to do some real damage.’
Baringo nodded, smiling. ‘We do need to prepare though, something like this is not to be taken lightly.’
‘You are right, of course,’ Rimyar said, now almost beaming.
It was the next day that the forst portends were there. Little whirlwinds of sand here and there warned all the desert born of what was to come. The tribes moving around gathered all thier things and headed for hideouts. Waterholes were covered up so they could easily be reached again, and marked so that only desert people knew what to look for.
The commander of the ink stain noticed the change in the wind and grumbled that it was now facing them. It meant a lot more maintenance on the armour as the sand crept into all the joints.
The next day was the same, only the weather was twice as worse as the day before. The whirlwinds were bigger now and started to be lashing everything like flying sandpaper.
Rimyar and Baringo, with covered faces, looked to the east, where they knew their natural help was coming from. By the end of the day they finally saw what they had been looking for.