Mystery May
The Mystery of the Glowing Wolf, Part One

The Mystery of the Glowing Wolf, Part One
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 4 to 6
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   5.08

     challenging words:    flamboyant, gaudy, robust, superstitious, inherit, estate, ridiculous, ritual, eccentric, housekeeper, nightstand, personality, strategy, spite, arrival, floral
     content words:    Circle K., Miss Ashley, Native American

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The Mystery of the Glowing Wolf, Part One
By Colleen Messina

1     Mrs. Tufts, the housekeeper, took a deep breath when she realized that the old man was dead. She gently covered his wrinkled face with the quilt as salty tears began to slide down her pink nose. She had been his housekeeper at his sprawling Montana ranch for many years, and she would miss the feeble man.
2     Mrs. Tufts had been the invisible glue that had kept everything running on the Circle K horse ranch. She always wore cotton floral dresses covered with a white apron and looked quite humble. However, she charged through her daily chores with the strength and strategy of a linebacker at a championship game! Her blazing blue eyes snapped with fire and missed nothing. Mr. Scott had always called his housekeeper the Superwoman of Circle K Ranch.
3     What would happen now? Fortunately, Mr. Scott had explained his wishes in his will. He wanted someone he loved to inherit the ranch, and he wanted that person to live at Circle K. Mrs. Tufts learned that Miss Ashley, Mr. Scott's flamboyant niece from California, would be in charge of the estate, but she did not know if flashy Ashley planned on moving permanently to Montana. The attorney explained to Ashley that there was a clause in the will stating that if Ashley did not want to live on the property, the ranch would go to Mrs. Tufts. This would not be a problem because Ashley would inherit millions anyway.
4     Ashley arrived early one morning, and Mrs. Tufts soon discovered that the quirky girl with her gaudy clothes was incredibly superstitious. Ashley's superstitious nature became apparent as she wandered around the house waving incense right after her arrival. Streaks of gray smoke filtered through the halls and made Mrs. Tufts cough. Mrs. Tufts thought the whole ritual was silly. Ashley justified her actions by saying that the incense would get rid of ghosts!
5     Ashley spent the afternoon getting acquainted with the rest of the property and meeting with the lawyer. Mrs. Tufts secretly wondered how a lightweight girl with magenta highlights could possible organize an estate. Surprisingly, in spite of her rather eccentric personality, Ashley was efficient in business matters. Mrs. Tufts waited anxiously to know what Ashley would decide about the ranch.

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