When I stepped through the large gray doors, an older man immediately hustled out of the shadows and over to me. His shoulder length silver hair and even longer beard had always reminded me of a wizard. But Thomas was anything but magical.
“Where have you been?” he screeched. His light tan tunic hung like a poncho and extra long pants brushed along the stone floor making a swishing sound that grated on my last nerve. “And what the hell are you wearing? Did you swallow a gothic kid?”
I looked down at my very dark frat party outfit and smiled. “What? You don’t think they’ll like it?” I pushed past him and began walking toward the great room where all meetings took place. “I’m going to tell them it was your idea.”
“Nora!” Thomas started to argue, but then pressed his lips together when I giggled. “Oh no. You will not goad me today, young lady.” Thomas considered himself a father figure of sorts. I knew I was one of his favorites—all the more reason why I could tease him so much.
“Nora, change your clothes now.”
I just had one more bend to pass through before entering the room where I’d face my elders. Reality settling in with a crushing force, I asked, “Do you know what they want, Thomas?”
He huffed. “Probably to tell you to get out of those awful clothes. You know, you’re not a teenager anymore.”
“Plus forty years give or take,” he countered, bending down to touch the black leather boots hugging my legs. “Where did you get those?”
I couldn’t tell if he was impressed or appalled. I shrugged. “Saw them on a billboard where I crossed through and thought it would work for the night.”