That day, at 6:15 a.m., Singer and his friends heard "a single high-pitched crack." Singer, who'd been hunting since the age of five or six, "immediately registered it was a gunshot," but feigned ignorance.
It was Beth who finally said the obvious.
"That was a gunshot, Singer."
The group could see three people at the base of the rock wall. They ran through the possibilities besides "kidnapping", because the human brain can rationalize just about anything:
"Maybe there's some kind of family emergency back in the U.S. and they need to contact us."
You know it's a shit situation when "Nana threw out her hip" would have been a better outcome.
Or maybe they have a crush on Beth and don't know how to approach. Or maybe they think Tommy's shoes are awesome and want to know where he got them. Or maybe they're going to fucking kidnap everybody. Obviously, in 2015, if you were woken up at your campsite in any-stan by a bunch of armed, bearded men, you'd immediately know you were about to be kidnapped by terrorists. But all this happened in August of 2000, before the word "terrorism" made up 60 percent of an average hour of Fox News.