flickering lights

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The night was wet and cold. Amber’s chest heaved as she gasped to catch her breath, filling her lungs with the damp air. She stood in the middle of the freeway hoping against hope that she had interpreted the scrawled and coded message correctly and had come to the right place in time.

The darkness was as black and deep as death and yet in the distance, filtered by the foggy air, she began to see the streetlights lights flickering in a pattern that seemed to move closer and closer.  As each haloed orb blinked off, the next one would flicker on.

A figure emerged from the fog—a young woman walking along the middle of the deserted highway.  She carried nothing. Her hands were tucked loosely in her jacket pockets and her pace was steady and even.

She seemed so casual, as though she was out for an evening stroll. Calm and untethered, her pace was slow and deliberate.  And as she came closer, Amber could feel the electricity crackling and buzzing and . . . could it be possible?  Yes, it was true; each light standard buzzed on as she approached, stayed lit for a few brief moments while she passed and then flickered off as she moved forward.

And as the young woman walked closer, Amber recognized the unmistakable gait. It was Macy. She had finally returned from her visit with the man in the hill.