Max reared up on his hind legs, casting an unnaturally huge shadow behind him – it must have been a trick of the light. Perhaps that would also explain the strange halo that glimmered around its outline? Glancing over his shoulder, the sight of the spectral shape looming tall almost made Max jump out of his skin, before he realised it was his own shadow. Gosh, was that really him? How did he look so big? Max didn’t understand what came over him at that moment, but a surge of heat flooded his body, as if fire was racing through his veins, and he felt suddenly bolder. He swiped a large paw through the air, flexing his claws in a menacing gesture. A loud bang of thunder came out of nowhere and the sky darkened with the eerie half-light that comes just before a storm. Max’s coat crackled with electricity, his fur bristling as he turned back towards the crowd.
The sky was almost black now, as dark as night, the storm still raging overhead. Jemima shivered, her flesh prickling at the feeling that something strange was in the air. With Max in her arms, she and Charlie crept towards the edge of the green while everyone was busy watching the Witchfinder being manhandled in the direction of the water. They were almost at the entrance to the lane leading to the woods when someone turned and caught sight of the two children slinking away, their silhouettes spotlit by a sudden flash of lightning.
A shout went up. ‘There they are, the boy wizard and Hopkins’ creature. They’re getting away. Stop them!’
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