Chapter 4.3P

Annie watched Double-J a moment as he stared down at his car, lying derilict in the snow bank on the side of the road. She heard the fading sounds of the cooling engine, the sound of Double-J’s breath, and — nothing else. She sensed something was not right, was confused by her confusion. Then it came to her.

Never been out on the fire road in winter, she said. I’m used to hearing all the sounds of nature — crickets, tree frogs, cicadas, birds, animals rustling in the grass. But this time of year — nothing.

Save for the occassional fucking deer said Double-J. Annie nodded.

We’re about a mile in said Double-J, suddenly turning in the direction where they had come. The Johnson house is just a little down the road from the turnoff. You’re good with them, right?

Sure.

Let’s go, Double-J said. Snow’s let up, means it’s getting colder. He began walking down the fire road, Annie hurrying to catch up with him.

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