Guillotine Girls, you say?
There are too many posts already, I can’t keep up, but here’s how I would do it …
Clearly, their story arc begins when mysterious attacks as though from a ferocious beast begin to surface in the wooded areas around Henrietta. Conservative estimates put the creature larger than a mountain lion, and locals have heard a strange, nearly lupine call from up the hills. Five girls find themselves drawn to the attacks and the strange circumstances surrounding them for different reasons, and end up forming a tentative friendship, leaving messages for one another in colored chalk on parking lots and torn off notes shoved in between locker vents. One of the girls, Aimee, has always been obsessed with French history, and tells the others about a secret treasure belonging to Marie Antoinette, kept hidden by a royal guard in her honor after her death. There was an entire secret society devoted to it - and she’s painstakingly traced scraps and whispers about them to this small town in Virginia, of all places. The treasure was said to have been protected by a fierce guardian beast, and when Aimee arrives in town just as the attacks begin, it can’t be a coincidence.
It’s a powerful secret, it’s /their/ secret, and as they’re drawn together by strange and unknowable forces, the girls are determined to solve it. But what is this mysterious treasure? Is it gold? Is it jewels? A stash of letters, or even a map? More curious still, what might the strange girl dogging their every steps like a pale shadow know about their quest, or indeed, about they themselves? Is she even a girl at all? Where do all these questions lead? And will they solve the greatest mystery of all in time - the nature of the beast itself - before it kills again?