The Flashlight Dilemma

We were sitting around a nice campfire, roasting some marshmallows. Our primitive campsite gave us a great spot out away from everyone else, where we could get a great glimpse of the stars. We watched as embers from the fire made their way up into the night sky, slowly fading out into the night sky.

There was a slight chill in the air and it felt good to be by the fire. Our campsite was next to a large open field, but it backed up against the nearby woods. We were telling some good stories of our childhood and everyone was adding in their two cents. I looked over at Brian and could tell he was up to something. All of a sudden, he stared right at me and said “Who wants to go on a night hike?”

I looked at the others and no one was answering. So, feeling adventurous, I told him “Count me in!” I figured we’d be heading out somewhere across the field, but Brian had other ideas. He motioned toward the woods. The thick, dark woods. I love the outdoors, but there was something a little spooky about those woods. Well, I thought, if we’re going to do this, better be prepared. I went into my tent, grabbed my rechargeable LED light, and met Brian by the edge of the woods.

Switching on my light, we gazed into the woods. After our eyes adjusted, we picked a path and proceeded on. The dry pine needles and pine cones crunched under our feet as we made our way. We stopped for a second to see if we could hear anything. Nothing. So, we kept on moving.

Darkness in the woods

We had probably been walking for about fifteen minutes when suddenly we heard a branch snap beside us. I spun around and shone my light that direction but saw nothing. I shined it at Brian’s face and could see that he was a little uneasy, as I was.

Are you sure this was such a great idea?” I asked.

You didn’t have to come,” he whispered back.

Why are we whispering?” I whispered.

So that whatever is out here doesn’t hear us,” he replied.

I’m not sure it matters at this point, since this flashlight pretty much tells anything out here where we are,” I said.

Brian nodded his head. Then he motioned with his hands back toward the campsite. We had just turned around when we both heard the sound again. I turned the flashlight all around us and couldn’t see anything except trees. We didn’t need any more evidence though. We both started running as fast as we could, hoping it was the direction of the campsite.

As we were running, all I could think of was the news headline that was sure to come out:

Two campers eaten by bear after taking wrong turn in woods.

We continued to run for what seemed like hours. And then, out of nowhere we saw the light of the campfire and heard the voices of our friends. Right before we left the woods, we slowed down to a casual stroll, walked out like nothing had happened, and headed over to the fire. We had lived to see another day.


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