Chapter 9

With great uncertainty and trepidation, the second group climbed the marble staircase. They were faced with two hallways, both waiting for them in total darkness.

Insisting that they remain together as one group, Todd chose the hallway to the right for them. Refusing to follow Todd, Gregg stood his ground, claiming that their elusive host could be anywhere—even in the darkened rooms on the left side of the house. Todd responded that for safety they must stick together; Gregg responded in turn by becoming quiet and sullen.

Following the right hallway, they were about to approach a closed door. Shana shivered and wished that she was anywhere else but here. The house was much too gloomy and quiet, giving off a deserted and threatening feeling. She was afraid that all her strange
forebodings about this evening were going to come true.

Todd and Linda stood at the door ready to open it when Shana spoke up. “Where did the others disappear to? Todd, I thought you had told Gregg to keep everyone close together in one group?”

Linda moved closer to Todd and whispered, “Do you think that Gregg, Ryan, and Judy have something to do with this strange party?”

Todd didn’t bother to answer her question but just opened the door and walked in. Linda and Shana were left alone in the empty hallway.

Shana was annoyed. “What’s his problem? Does he think he’s too important to give us a straight answer?”

“I’m sure Todd is as much in the dark as we are…he is just trying to keep us safe.”

Shana stalked through the doorway and then said over her shoulder, “I sure hope so.”

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