It was the final flight of stairs before you got to the THE PASSAGE that took so much out of you.
You had that sense of dread about you. You began to get a feel for what it must have been like for the condemned man.
But the instructions were very clear, up the stairs and down the passage to the right.
I clutched under my arm all the defenses I thought I’d need. It was just a formality I was told, as if this was anything but a formality.
Summoned to give my version of events before the Supreme Council was a bit much for a man who just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. How could a Monday morning go so wrong so fast?
Reaching the top of the stairs my stomach rolled over I am sure, the nerves and jitters started, my chest tingled and my feet for some strange reason were refusing to turn right. Forcing myself I approached the reception at the end of the passage. An attractive young lady with a large name tag saying Amanda greeted me, took my name, pressed a few buttons and asked me to take a seat.
I became aware that everything in this place was vast. The stairway, the passage and now the waiting room.
None of this aided my nerves, the wait seemed interminable.
A door in the distance opened and a man appeared, called my name and beckoned me enter.
The interview took an hour. Two aged men and an equally aged woman sat and listened, asked questions, nodded and said they understood.
I was told to leave by the door to the left.
On the other side was a narrow passageway, then another door and going through it I found myself in the street. Nothing awe inspiring about the exit. I guess the entry was to intimidate those who came via the vast staircase, the passage and the waiting room. It worked on me. The Panel’s ominous final words, “We’ll be in touch.” echoed in my mind.