Scribble 27: The Sacred Place I don't know what they did there or how they honoured their sacred place, but I was fairly determined to find out how their place looked like. I assume curiosity is nourished by solitude. I didn't really keep watch but I stayed by my cabin to such an extent that I had the chance to see the Tuskens leave - unless they for some reason chose to stay by their sacred place. Well, at least I got the chance to practice the meditation techniques Qui-Gon had taught me before he vanished to wherever he is when he's not visible. Obviously I'm not advanced enough yet to be told where that is. Two days later the Tuskens returned, walking through the entrance of the canyon in a long row. I waited one day more for good measure but then I assumed they'd all left. I chose to leave Emphie behind and walk by foot. I went further into the canyon than I'd ever done before even past the Krayt Valley and saw it widen considerably. After coming through the narrow canyon the open air was almost refreshing, despite the higher temperatures in the open landscape. I stopped and had a look. The ground was covered with grass. Real grass, though admittedly not very green and rather sparse. I assumed that this sign of humidity might have been enough for claiming the place sacred but I had a feeling that this wasn't the reason for deeming this place sacred after all. There had to be something else. It didn't take me long to see it. Actually I would have seen it once I came out of the canyon, if I hadn't been so mesmerised by the grass. It was there, almost in the middle of the open space, partly buried in the soil but yet with a dull metallic shine to it. A small spaceship, or by a closer look at it, more like some kind of an advanced escape pod. Definitely larger than the ones we used to have on board the "Negotiator" but still quite small in terms of space travelling. I approached carefully. The only trace I could see from the Tuskens was that the grass was flat, pressed down by numerous feet. They didn't seem to have entered the ship at all, just moved around it. I went closer. The metallic surface was dull and worn by numerous sandstorms over the years. It seemed to be ancient. I could see the welding of the plates that formed the hull of the ship being definitely more visible and rough than in any new ship. Whomever made this ship had done a thorough job because despite it seemed to have crashed into the ground it was surprisingly intact. A hatch could be seen on one side of it, close to the ground but not more so than a small being could have managed to get out. But who? And when? I kneeled down and touched something that seemed to be a handle on the outside and pulled. I had never for a moment expected it to open up, but it did. And in that moment I felt a pang of something…familiar. Something like a memory from very long ago which reminded me of laughter and comfort and friendship. And just as that, the feeling disappeared and something else came instead. It was like a maelstrom of fear, confusion and sadness. Oh, the sadness was so overwhelming that it almost brought tears to my own eyes for a moment. Then it was gone, and I peeked in. The cabin inside was small, not surprisingly so. After all it was a small ship. In the rear end I could see a cylinder, open on one side. It seemed almost like a safety container for a living being. If this ship was as old as I thought, maybe the one travelling in it would need some extra protection or oxygen or something else? I had no idea, but one thing was certain. The pilot or rather inhabitant of the small ship had vanished years, or rather centuries, ago. The cylinder was definitely empty and I felt strangely grateful that the being inside had been able to get out. I closed the hatch carefully again and stood up. Obviously this place, and this ship, had some meaning to the Tusken, but I had no idea what. Maybe they had considered the ship as something sent from the gods? Maybe the being inside had done something to then that they valued? I could only guess, but there was no way I would ever find out. If I ever came across the basic speaking tusken again, this was really the one thing I didn't want to ask about. Somehow I had a feeling that they wouldn't appreciate my presence on their sacred ground. Quietly I returned the same way I'd come.