Charlie smacked his lips together and tried to work some moisture back through his mouth. This part of the country was always dry. The yellow land gave way to a piteous blue sky and searing sun that burned just as hot at eight in the morning as at midday or six in the evening. He thrust his spade half-heartedly at the unyielding ground, sending the solid clunk of steel on stone out into the endless drone of cicadas. He looked down into the hole, now about half as deep as it needed to be and roughly rectangular, and decided he deserved a break.
It's good to finally see it in print!