The wind took the smoke off the chimneys of the log cabins, engineered rustic, that dotted the snowy mountain range. Tents were sealed around burnt out fire rings. The logs so gone that even snow tossed atop by the ready-for-bed campers or by the ever-increasing gusts didn't sizzle, just piled on then melted. Everyone up on the secluded getaway had hiked a few unadvertised miles because the roads were for service vehicles only, and while the paths had markings, they hadn't been cleared. Not enough foot traffic to pack it down and most campers wound up with wet socks.
For five days now, the group in the cabin farthest from the road and separated most from the other housings, by obstacle more than distance, hadn't seen each other since graduation. They'd met in Europe, separate groups studying in France, Belgium, Lithuania, Wales, but their relationships hinged on Rosie's free-spirit because when she crashed with Malia in Lithuania on the host family's couch, something no one was thrilled about, she called up Sunny, Roger, and Glenn who were "just over in France" but they had time off so came anyway and then Glenn and Sunny made their way back with their new friend Malia, while Rosie went with Roger but stopped off in Belgium to party with Hunter and Quinn, somehow meeting Damion for the third time but finally remembering his name. And so on. Till Rosie had tramped across the whole continent, uniting the Americans from the same college in a web so convoluted that not one of them told it the same way, often forgetting key players, even arguing their way as the sweet reminiscence turned to a drunken blow-up.
This week was, as Margie suggested, a spiritual revival of their friendships after work and life and love lost separated them. Though no one will take ownership of planning it, a few hands gathered specific people until the trip snowballed in a massive group message that Malia hated being in ever since it woke her up at 2 one afternoon.
The lion's share of booze had gotten pissed into the snow where some, women included, tried writing their names. In cursive. And after some precise measurement, they decided they had enough alcohol to stay tipsy the final few days or enough for one last great night that'd leave them hungover till it was time to leave. They chose the latter.
And now, locked away on that secluded mountain, their fate hinges upon an unseen hand--yours.