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Mystery May
The Mystery of the Man in the Dark



The Mystery of the Man in the Dark
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 5 to 7
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   5.21

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    night-the, outrun, scrawny, lecturer, maroon, blustery, urgent, behavior, butler, mysterious, mystery, humor, trade, whose, news, century
     content words:    Great Britain, Hidden Images


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The Mystery of the Man in the Dark
By Colleen Messina
  

1     It was a dark and stormy night-the kind of weather that inspires writers the world over to write mystery stories. And just at this blustery moment, a mystery was brewing in London.
 
2     It all began when a young lady got up from her seat in a lecture hall. She had enjoyed the lecture, but it was late, and she had to get home. She put on her coat, grabbed her umbrella, and pushed her way through the crowd that was bursting with conversation. She went out into the pouring rain.
 
3     The young lady, whose name was Helena, was stylishly dressed in a long maroon dress that had a white lace hem. Cold rain pelted her face like icy tears. She walked out onto the sidewalk, and the hem of her dress turned brown from the rivers of muddy water. She quickly opened her black umbrella and turned it against the storm. The loud boom of thunder made her jump, and the flash of white lightning illuminated the street, creating eerie shadows. Helena began to hurry.
 
4     Helena did not mind a solitary stroll because she was a bold girl. She often went out alone, which was not considered proper behavior for a young lady in 19th century Great Britain. She had a sharp mind but also a good sense of humor. She often played jokes on her poor butler, a thin man who looked as if his skin was stretched too tightly over his bones. Helena also loved music, so she had attended the lecture called "The Hidden Images in Music" that night.

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