My father passed away.

As everyone walked past our family, giving their condolences, I saw something odd. A large group of men, dressed with bright red turbans standing outside the church, as if they were waiting for something.

Then I saw them again at the burial sight. They didn’t stand close to the casket, but close enough that they could probably hear everything that was being said. After the priest dismissed everyone, I stayed behind. I wanted a minute to say good bye to my father alone.

Apparently, so did the red turbaned gentlemen.

The eldest of the group approached me, standing uncomfortably close to me. I looked at him out of the corner of my eye. Why was he here? Why were any of them here? My family was not in the habit of wearing turbans. We were not a part of any Eastern religion or ethnicity.

The turbaned stranger stared down at the casket, and answered the question I had only thought of.

“Your father was one of us. A member of a secret society, one that has spanned the ages.”

I chuckled to myself.

“He was indeed, Andrew. Let me tell you about the real man you just buried.”