The sound of “them” walking toward Kal and Hank sounded like only one person but Hank felt like it was more than one. He could just sense it. He kept his head down, focused on his fabric covered booties he had slipped into with his red jumpsuit.
“Stand please.” A voice sounded eerily like a very young British girl but that seemed impossible. Hank did as he was told, all the while keeping his head down.
“You can look up. It’s ok. We are keen to make eye contact with you. Go ahead.” Hank slowly scanned the person in front, slowly from her bootied feet to her yellow jumpsuit to her face, and yes, glistening gold eyes. A kid. Just like him. A kid. An awkward-aged early teen girl in a yellow jumpsuit, tall and not fully grown up, skinny, bald, and oddly familiar. “Do I know her? Have I seen her before?” Hank was talking to himself again. Out loud.
He avoided looking at the others. He aimed his attention to the teen who talked.
“Are you taking me to the leaders?” Hank asked. “No,” said the young girl. “We are the leaders. We are the chosen ones. You are joining our leadership team. In time. Right now you have a lot to learn. But in time you will be one of us.”
Hank quickly glanced at the others. There were seven of them. Each bald, wearing a yellow jumpsuit, each carrying what looked like a walking stick with a gold handle. All had gold coloured eyes. And all of them were young. Very young. His age. Maybe younger.
Hank stuttered. “Um, ah…I’m going to go now if that is alright with all of you. I don’t think I want to be a leader. I don’t think I want to do whatever it is you are doing. It’s Friday I think. Pizza night at home. I think I’ll just go back to the chair now. If you could be so kind as to point me in the direction of the chair room I will be off. Um. Thanks anyway.”
The leaders banged their golden canes on the ground and stepped back as portions of the floor dropped around Hank with a thud, leaving Hank standing on a piece of the floor the size of a diving board.
In unison the leaders said, “we’re afraid that is not possible.”