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Plodding through the ankle deep snow in the fading light, Zoe couldn't wait to get indoors. The street leading to the colony was deserted and the neighboring houses were empty as everyone was off for the holidays. Shrouded in silence, the shadows cast by the streetlights looked unusually eerie. A slight ruffle in the breeze made her jump out of her skin!

As she turned her neck warily, a flier fluttering on the lamppost outside the house caught her attention. Zoe ripped it off to have a closer look and her eyes widened.  

Serial killer at large! Extra caution for girls especially if you're a redhead residing in and around Lyndale District.Report to the nearest police station if sighted. 

A face stared back at her, the same one doing the rounds on primetime on this sensational news… and rightly so. But the fliers being pasted outside every house was definitely not good news for this neighborhood. 

It was past dinner time and she hurried along, cramming the flier into her pocket. The house was in darkness as she approached it. The cook had left long ago and as usual, forgotten to leave the porch light on. She let herself in after a bout of frustration when the lock wouldn't give in at first. 

The door finally budged and Zoe let herself in. The living room was bathed in an orange light spilling from the street lamps. She was ravenous by now. Having skipped lunch, upon entering the kitchen, the whiff of warm food tempted her to dig in instantly.

But first things first… 

Her thoughts were abruptly interrupted and she stopped in her tracks when she heard a shuffling outside the front door. Wringing her hands together, she froze even as her heart started racing. There were no other occupied houses for another few meters or so…

Could it be…?! 

She sensed some hesitation outside and a saw a blurred silhouette through the fancy frosted pane. Had she inadvertantly left the door ajar? There was no time to think. 

Upstairs!

With a pounding heart, she grabbed the largest knife from the drawer and tiptoed her way up as quickly and quietly as she could. She reached the landing just as the front door opened wide. A long shadow fell across the hardwood floor.

Just as she slipped into the bedroom, Zoe could hear footsteps at the bottom of the stairs!

Now what…!

HIDE NOW! Her brain seemed to scream even as she slipped into a closet, her fingers clutching the serrated knife, turning white. 

Anytime now! She had to be quick when she went straight for the jugular! As Zoe squirmed and clenched her free hand in her pocket, she found the flier from earlier. She could barely contain a muted giggle this time when her own face stared back at her. 

Pic Courtesy: Image by R23X from Pixabay


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