Chapter 5: Unexpected Guests

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Chapter Vibes:

Chapter Vibes:

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Now the anxious murmurs had become louder, faster, more desperate and confused beneath the Baptist Church's angel mural

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Now the anxious murmurs had become louder, faster, more desperate and confused beneath the Baptist Church's angel mural. Late afternoon brightness seeped through the windows on either side of the auditorium, where once again, the whole town crammed together to discuss last night's events.

I stroked Hope's hair as she bopped to the music playing through the headphones over her ears. Already, only a quarter of battery life remained. I knew I couldn't keep up this whole protection thing for long. Eventually fear would find her, too. But hopefully, I'd be prepared to help her navigate through its dark, cold waters without drowning in it myself.

"You don't need to fear, y'all." Gunner stood to my left with Dixie, preaching to Bill and those nearest to them. "Krista is fine and Hunter chased the goons off."

"Chased?" Maryann, the white, Husky-haired woman said. "I thought the Blood Thieves disappeared out of sight!"

"Well, yes, but—"

"That sounds pretty terrifyin' to me."

Gunner opened his mouth, but before he could respond, Pastor Mitchel shouted from behind his podium. "Quiet down, folks!"

Once again, his Martha Stewart wife, in royal blue heels today, stood on his left while Elder Hank and Hunter posted to his right. Despite slight darkness beneath his eyes, no doubt from staying up all night keeping watch over Krista, he still looked super hot in a plaid short-sleeve and jeans.

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