A little before midnight, I heard a car pull up. A car door closed and then another.
Even though the streetlight would have allowed me a glimpse of who was heading to my house if I had chosen to get up and peek through one of the three small windows in my front door, I decided I didn’t want to know.
I held my breath and sat perfectly still. Maybe they aren’t coming here. Please don’t be coming here.
There was a light knock on the side door. It dawned on me that whoever it was, they knew us well enough to use the side kitchen instead of the front door.
I walked slowly to the door and opened it.
Standing outside were two men. Charlie was Bruce’s lieutenant, hiking partner, and friend. Standing next to Charlie was another firefighter whose name escaped me.
I waved them inside.
While they stood in the kitchen, I backed up and leaned my shoulder against the door frame between the kitchen and living room. The doorway felt solid, strong enough to hold me up if need be.
We exchanged polite greetings.
And then silence.
I couldn’t stand the suspense. “Just say it.”
Charlie whispered, “They are unaccounted for.”
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