He took a moment to rest and thought of Hannah. According to her, it was common long ago for a large estate to have a private cemetery. They agreed that Nathan Freedman's final resting place probably lay somewhere on the property. Odds on finding the grave seemed slim, yet still worth the effort.
After breakfast, his grandparents had taken a trip into town for groceries, believing Nate would spend the morning reading in his room. Nate had watched their car pull around the bend then snuck down the secret staircase and out the backdoor.
He had no real hope of finding the cemetery today, but he could at least scout the area for the most favorable place to start a search. Still, he didn't want to chance missing something. With a stick he fashioned into a staff, he probed the ground for any remnants of a burial site. Vines growing thick enough to hide a fence, piles of rocks that resembled grave markers, or even rocks that looked like broken headstones. Nate investigated them all.
Two hours into the search, he came to a clearing where a gap in a growth of old trees resembled a yawning mouth. Under maples, oaks, and evergreens, a carpet of leaves and fallen branches littered the ground. Nate fig...
... middle of paper ...
...e people hadn't realized they were on private land. Or maybe they realized it, so had picked the odd parking area.
Spotting something on the passenger seat, Nate pressed his face against the window for a better look. The sleeve of an airline ticket from the same carrier as the one he had taken, lay opened. Nate cupped his face with his hand to block the glare off the glass so he could make out the flight number. Flight 417. Nate straightened, but before he could even think about what that meant, he froze.
Reflecting in the car window just off to his side, loomed a dark threatening shape. Nate wondered if that warning about objects being closer than they looked applied to a car's windows as well. If so, he was in big trouble. He stood as still as possible, the way he heard you should if you were ever hiking in the woods and stupid enough to run into a bear.
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