THE GRAY OVERCAST sky hung low in the isolated valley on the cool autumn afternoon. The surrounding mountain peaks had been masked by the heavy clouds for days. A deep rumble shook the ground, sending animals scurrying and startling birds from their roosts in the trees. The thunder-like rumbling from above the clouds grew louder. The valley had never heard thunder like this. The rumbling intensified to a heavy roar.
A small group of hunters stalking deer cast their eyes to the sky, expecting the clouds to break open from the deafening thunder with a torrent of rain. But this wasn't thunder at all. A bright flash burst forth from the ceiling of clouds. The hunters realized this was not lightning. They had never seen anything like this before. A glowing orb streaked through the sky above their heads as they watched in dazed disbelief. The orb wobbled and veered as it fell, as if it were trying to fight gravity and keep itself from smashing into the ground.
The hunters readied their weapons, not knowing what threat this mystery from the sky might present. Suddenly the thundering roar stopped, and the orb made one final veer and a slight upward turn before slamming into the earth. The hunters were nearly knocked off their feet from the shockwave. The thing - whatever it was - hit the ground just beyond a line of trees, perhaps an hour's walk away, the hunters estimated.
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