The natives were restless that afternoon. Running around their primitive structures with wild abandon, screaming unintelligible words that caused my blood to curdle. Plumes of dirt puffed up from under their stomping feet as they danced around me with jerky movements that made no sense.
Dread flooded my heart.
As the group circled around I recognized one of them. I’d known him for two years and he’d shown me mercy in the past. I reached out a hand but he ignored me, caught up in the energy of the ritual.
Behind him a girl caught my attention and we made eye contact. For a second we were connected and I thought—hoped–I had another chance to escape this madness. My hopes were dashed when she opened her mouth to let out a shriek that sent shivers up my spine. Turning on her heels, she ran in the opposite direction and the others followed, crashing into one another as they righted themselves with the new rotation.
I looked around at the other parents and a collective sigh escaped us. It was going to be a long day at the playground.