“Here it is guys.” Jason said, after he had examined the site. “Alright, who has the tent?” The other three flash worrisome looks at each other, then back to Jason, “You never told us...” Ethan began, but was cut off.
“Hah, just kidding. You should’ve seen the looks on your faces, absolutely priceless. It’s right here. Gimme a hand, will you?”
The four work together and unpack and begin setting up the tent, when the sun threatens to set.
“Uh oh. Hey guys, sun’s setting. We’d better get a fire going.” Eric warns. “Yeah, you’re right Eric, how about you and Al go pick us up some firewood? There should be some stacked nearby. Just keep heading north, you’ll see it. Me and Ethan will keep setting up the tent.”
“Alright. Come on, Al.” Eric calls, grabs a flashlight, and sets off in search of the wood.
“Take a compass too, just in case you get lost. Be sure to head straight north to find the wood, so that the camp will be straight south.” Jason calls as a reminder.
“Already got one with me.” Eric called back, and disappeared into the thick of the woods. Albert follows closely behind.
Darkness grows all around them, the flashlight offers little comfort, and both are eager to get the firewood and get back as soon as possible. Crickets chirp with delight, frogs croak, and bats shriek, which heralds the approach of nightfall.
Soon, the sun’s faint rays flutter behind the horizon, and stars begin to appear, one by one, until the sky lights up with glistening dots of light. Tonight was a New Moon, Eric remembered, meaning little light will be available to illuminate their way aside from the stars and, of course, their flashlight.
“I think I see it.” Eric says, relieved. “Yep, that’s it alright.” Agrees Albert. “Good, grab an armful and let’s head back, I don’t want to be out here any longer than we have to.” “You don’t have to tell me twice.”
With that, both load their arms up with wood, and head back to camp. When they arrive, the tent is made and chairs have been set up for each of them around the soon-to-be-fire. Ethan and Jason spin towards them, take the wood from them, and begin working on the fire.
Soon they are all sitting behind the inviting orange glow of a warm fire. Just in time, too, as the sun had long since set, making the air even colder than it already had been, although still a bearable forty degrees. Or, it would have been bearable, until the rain came in.
I don’t mean the kind of drizzling rain in which you sometimes find comfort, or slight annoyance, depending on your personality. Nor do I mean the steady drip-drip of a slow but constant rainfall. This is a downpour. This was the kind of cold, damp torrent of rain that makes you completely miserable, regardless of whether you are the kind of person who likes rain or not.
On top of that, the chilly night air began to cool down the rain, not quite enough to turn it into snow, just enough to make it numbingly cold. Wind cuts through them like a knife, and thunder...