You prepare for the man to pull out an invitation of his own and reveal they’ve been working to help the paranormal…
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“Please let them be unexpectedly on my side after all,” you think in the split second before the man’s hand comes out of his pocket, bringing with it an invitation just like yours.
You blink, stunned. The men seem a little off-kilter as well. “We’ve been working to help people like you,” the one on the left says, vaguely.
The man hesitates, his mouth opening and closing and his eyes staring oddly, without focus.
“Please tell me this isn’t a trick,” you think.
“This isn’t a trick,” he says. The man on the right nods in agreement, but he looks confused.
“Where are you taking me?” you ask. The same hesitation, goldfish face, and odd stare. “Pancake House for tea and straight back home would be nice,” you say inwardly as you steel yourself for the reply.
“Pancake House,” says the man on the right, “for tea – and then straight back home.” They look at each other, uncertainly at first, then with timid smiles of encouragement. You see them relax.
A slow grin spreads across your face. “No way!” you think to yourself. Then before anything can happen you quickly change that to, “Yes way!” Some days it’s good to be paranormal.
At Pancake House you have the best meal of your life. “I think I’ll have the strawberry and chocolate crepe,” the first man says.
“You don’t want the strawberry and chocolate crepe,” you think. “You want the salt crepe with a glass of fresh-squeezed orange juice.”
“Second thoughts, I’ll have the salt crepe with a fresh-squeezed orange juice.” He shuts the menu happily – the confusion and uncertainty in his manner are completely gone now.
This is awesome.
At the end of the meal, one of the men pulls out his wallet to pay the bill. You feel a bit bad letting him do that – this isn’t going to show up well on his expense account. Besides, it might create complications later on, when the two go back to whoever sent them – if anyone – to explain where you are and why they thought the best thing to do was to take you out to Pancake House and drop you straight home again, all on the company account.
Maybe it’d be better in the long run if you paid the bill. Maybe it’d be better if there wasn’t any bill at all…