Mattie hurried across the room and glanced out to where she thought the sounds were coming from. She saw brilliant flames rising high in the sky that weren’t there minutes before. She silently wondered how anyone could burn the damp wood in the falling rain, but she did notice how the thick trees were providing a little protection from the stormy weather. The area looked shrouded in mist caused from the rain hitting the warm earth.There were several people surrounding the licking flames dressed in dark garb and looking strangely sinister. Who would have thought she’d encounter strangers in the mist, but there they were and their presence didn’t make sense to her. How had they started the fire and she hadn’t noticed them?The chill she felt before was reinforced by what she was now watching across the wooded area. Off in the distance, she heard another scream, but it could have been a wild animal inhabiting the wooded area. Suddenly, she realized her mind was conjuring up different scenarios, and she was surely imagining things.She decided to forget the newspaper because there was no way she wanted to start a fire and let whoever was out there find out she was in the shack. As she stood trembling from fright and also the dampness, she watched the two men and one woman begin stripping off their clothing.
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