The second sign that something uncanny was occurring was the sound of a musket shot. The lady puzzled over it, scrambling onto a boulder outcrop to identify the source. From here, she had a good view of the pass beneath her. She saw nobody firing old weapons.
The disturbance came, not from below, but right up here with her. The woman heard footfalls on gravel and turned around. There was no gravel on this road. It was tarmacked completely, yet it was gravel she heard.
A large, frightened Highlander was hurtling towards her. She could see every detail, though she knew the man was not entirely real. The ashen face, with its horrific expression, appeared to glow, as if moonbeams were upon it.
Yet it was two in the afternoon, on a bright, glorious day.
The woman closed her eyes, sure that she was hallucinating. But she could still hear those running feet on gravel. She opened them again. The Highlander had not gone away. It reached the cyclist and sped right past her, close enough to touch, had the cyclist dared. But the Highlander never acknowledged her, nor even seemed to see her.
Down in the pass came a second musket shot. The sound of it echoed from crags and the valley walls. In the instant that it took the woman to swing around, reacting to the gunfire, the Highlander had gone.
Before her horrified vision, she saw the red coat army marching down in the bottom of the Killiecrankie Pass. Thousands of them marching, several abreast, around an outcrop and out of view.
By now thoroughly spooked, the tourist decided it was time to go. She grabbed her bicycle and made to mount it. But her foot touched against something seemingly solid.
She looked down. It was a red coat soldier moaning through a fatal wound. Nor was he alone. Suddenly the entire Pass seemed full of them. Bodies strewn amidst the greenery. The Williamites vivid in scarlet. The Highlanders clad in plaid. All of them dying, screaming to her in their agony.
Rooted to the ground with shock, the woman could only watch. Then she saw the girl.
Like so many before and since, she saw the girl. And of all the horrors that she'd witnessed that day, this was the worst of all.