I turned as all movement and noise outside my father’s shop ceased. Everyone outside was looking toward the edge of town. My curiosity took control as I moved to exit the shop, and what I saw I will never forget. Colton and Amanda came walking down the street, cloths torn and covered in bruises and mud. This could not be possible. Colton and Amanda were murdered twenty years earlier in old man Hagan’s vineyard on the edge of town.

What about the murder? We don’t really know that much. Colton, who was my younger brother, and Amanda were each shot twice. Investigators knew that the weapon used was a twelve gauge, but they never found it. They knew the shooting took place in the vineyard, but never learned who actually committed the murder. No DNA, except that of Colton and Amanda, was found on the scene.

It looked almost as if the victims had come back to life and were returning home. I followed along with the crowd in disbelief as the two young adults were rushed to the local hospital, both with a positive DNA match to who we suspected them to be. If my younger brother and his friend had returned, who were the two children that were murdered? Where had these two been for the previous twenty years?

Twenty years earlier…

“Colton stop, I wanna go back.”

“Ya scared of old man Hagan?”

“Colton. His house is haunted.”

“There is no such things as ghosts, Amanda. Com’on.”

Colton climbed over the small wooden fence into old man Hagan’s vineyard while Amanda followed timidly.

“Do you see any ghosts yet, Amanda?”

“No, but it’s dark and I’m scared”

Colton reached for the closest vine, took a grape, and handed it to Amanda, “Here. Eat this.” He took another and placed it in his own mouth. “There’s somethin’ else you gotta see.” Colton motioned with his hand for Amanda to follow him.

The two made their way through vineyard until Colton stopped, “See?” He pointed into the sky.

“Wow!” Amanda’s eyes lit up as she looked into the flawless clear starry sky.

“Crunch.”

The two looked toward what sounded like a footstep. “Wha… What was that?” Amanda asked, her voice shaking.

“I don’t know, but we better get outa’ here”

Just as they turned to run, one single shot, what sounded like a twelve gauge slug, rang in their ears. Colton turned only to see Amanda fall to the ground. He heard the gun, which sounded as if it was getting closer, being pumped. The pump was followed quickly by another shot.

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