Miss Grace Thomas is the lead vocalist, or vocal stylist, in Herman E. Calloway’s band. Bud first meets Miss Thomas at the Sweet Pea, and she immediately takes him under her wing with her kindness and concern. She asks him about his swollen eye (which he got from Todd Amos), and extends sympathy when Bud tells her that his momma died four years ago. She doesn’t believe that Bud’s story could be true, that he is Mr. C.’s son, but nevertheless, Bud adores her. He thinks she “must be the most beautiful woman in the world,” with hands that move when she talks “that make you feel like you’d been hit with some kind of magic fairy dust, then you couldn’t help but smile.” With Miss Thomas, Bud feels safe and exposes his childlike vulnerability. He finds tears again and allows himself to cry in front of her. Miss Thomas pulls him close and tells him, “Go ahead and cry, Bud, you’re home.” From that moment forward, Miss Thomas is his defender and protector.