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Mystery May
Mystery of the Missing Gold, Part Three



Mystery of the Missing Gold, Part Three
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 4 to 6
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   4.91

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    bolo, desolate, insignificant, outhouse, rotund, yogurt-covered, sagebrush, survival, traditional, finding, warmth, plank, uncomfortable, further, prickly, mining
     content words:    As Stan, Then Stan, When Stan


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Mystery of the Missing Gold, Part Three
By Colleen Messina
  

1     Stan sat up as the sounds by his tent gradually grew fainter. Stan had never imagined in his wildest dreams that his trip to Montana to hear his grandfather's will would lead to a camping trip in a ghost town. If he found a hidden treasure in Bannack, it would be the greatest event of his life.
 
2     Stan had thought it was the middle of the night, but then he realized it was getting lighter in his cold tent. It must be early morning. Stan dragged his lean frame out of his tent. The cool air hit him like a brisk slap in the face, and the first thing he smelled was damp sagebrush.
 
3     Stan then collected brush for a fire. The heat from its orange, crackling flames made him feel like a living marshmallow, and he had to step back when the fire got too hot. Even so, the warmth soothed his panicky feelings from the noises he had heard earlier. He made some strong coffee, splashed some water on his face, and grabbed a crispy, yogurt-covered energy bar for breakfast. He was eager to see Bannack in the pale morning light. Was there a treasure waiting for him in the old mining town?
 
4     Bannack felt desolate. No one had visited the ghost town in ages. The old buildings looked as though they could fall over. Stan walked past some buildings, and he went by the single scraggly pine tree in front of the sagging town hall. Stan noticed that it looked as though someone had tried to dig there. Why would anyone want to dig holes in the hard, rocky soil of Bannack?

Paragraphs 5 to 14:
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