A plane crashes in the Sahara. Only a reporter and an editor survive. At first they hope that rescuers will see the smoke rising from the wreckage. But the fire dies, and no one comes. They are lost and alone under a merciless sun, and start walking.
For days, they march in horrendous heat. Their water runs out. Their skin peels. Their minds reel from sunstroke. Finally, they collapse — blistered and dehydrated — at the bottom of an enormous sand dune.
“Let’s curl up here and die,” gasps the editor.
“No!” cries the reporter. “We cannot give up. Let’s climb to the top of the dune and see if there’s any hope.”
They stagger up — two steps forward, one step back — and reach the top of the dune.