It didn’t take Sonny long to reach the dirt road that led down to the Tower Farm, nor did it take long for him to amass an army of angry citizens.

At least fifty sets of headlights beamed down the long stretch of dirt road, sending up a massive cloud of dust into the calm, cool early-morning air. The sun wasn’t due to come up for another two hours, but people who had been asleep during the first news broadcasts were now wide awake and aware of the situation, thanks to a quick phone call to or from a neighbor. The town had emerged from its slumber, and most were rapidly joining the mob that Sonny had created.

Skidding to a halt in front of the house, Sonny almost immediately noticed the smoke rising from the interior of the house.

“Hold on, Sonny. Don’t rush in there. It might not be safe!” Steve shouted as he exited the vehicle alongside Johnny and Benny.

Sonny didn’t hear, and didn’t care. Jerry Baker, the owner of the Tower Farm, was a good friend of his and he wanted to help as quickly as possible.

Not heeding the advice of his cohorts, Sonny kicked in the front door of the house and was instantly engulfed in black smoke and the awful smell of burned flesh.

Coughing and gagging, Sonny took one step back before his comrades were at his side in a matter or seconds. Together, they entered, covering their noses and mouths with their shirts; outside, they heard the yells of confusion and concern from the townspeople behind them, not sure what to make of the scene.

“Jerry, you in here?!” Sonny managed to yell, but got no response.

“Sonny, look in the kitchen!” Johnny shouted, pointing to where the smoke was coming from.

Turning his attention that way, Sonny and the others immediately spotted a body lying on the floor, totally engulfed in flames.

All four men wasted no time and dashed through the smoke-filled hallway. When they got there, they were not only met by the dead body of Connie but also of Sonny’s good friend, Jerry.

“Nooo!!!” Sonny screamed as he rushed to aid his dead friend, who was still hanging from the back door.

“Careful, that bastard might still be around here,” Steve stated, and the men made their way out the back door to get some fresh air.

Sonny didn’t say anything. He just shook his head in disbelief at the carnage all around him.

Just then, there was a scream from outside as a group of about fifteen people or so began rushing toward the barn.

“What in the hell?” Johnny asked to himself as all the men joined the fray and marched toward the barn.

As they got there, they saw a woman emerge from the large wooden doors and vomit around the corner, while a man, apparently her husband, followed to make sure she was alright.

“You don’t want to go in there,” an older man yelled out to Sonny’s group as he too made his way out of the barn with a pale, sickened face.

Johnny, Steve, and Benny ignored the plea and rushed into the barn anyway. Sonny, meanwhile, stayed behind and walked off by himself toward Billow’s Woods to gather himself.

However, he was not greeted by silence in the field as he had expected. Instead, he heard a phone ringing over by the wood line.

Sonny looked around expecting to see one of the townspeople over there talking on a cell phone, but there was no one in sight.

Curious, he made his way toward the ringing, and it didn’t take long before he found the source of the noise.

Right on the edge of the forest was the bloodied, mangled body of Sheriff Robinson, staring up blankly into the sky.

Sonny muttered an Italian swear word aloud to himself and quickly yelled for his buddies to get over here.

The phone kept ringing and Sonny decided he better answer it and give someone on the other end some real bad news.

So, very carefully, not disturbing anything around the body, Sonny lifted the cell phone out of the sheriff’s pants pocket.

The caller ID on the phone read ‘Loomis’.

Proceed To Chapter 23
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