The first thing Crawford saw when he stepped off the plane was a big white billboard.
DORTMANN'S XMAS TREE FARM
5 Minutes Down Route 144
The letters were in red and green: underneath them was a smiling Santa Claus. Someone had painted over Santa's red-and-white cap and given him a big, pointed black hat; something was written next to the hat. The plane's lights, shining out into the darkness, weren't bright enough for Crawford to read the words.
Sweat beaded on his brow, and he wiped it away.
It was Saturday, August 10, 1991, just after 10 P.M. He was ten seconds out of the air-conditioned Beechcraft and perspiring...