Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Driver 8

She's going to be here today I know it, he thinks.

Gotta be. Here today.

He can't remember exactly when he started seeing her on the train. His train. The 5:04. It was October, maybe later.

He stands outside the gate watching the crush of commuters rush by. He passes time talking with other folks working at the station.

One day she just appeared, smiling at him as if she'd been taking his train home for years and years.

My train, he thinks. She's on my train. Maybe today.

He checks his watch. It's 4:45. He knows it's too early for her, the girl with the light blue jacket and dark eyes. She usually comes down the escalator with just five minutes to spare.

He knows she likes it up top in the single seats. She does not like sitting too close to strangers.

Yet she smiles at him like she'd give him the world if he only bothered to ask.

It's 4:54. Let it be my train today, he thinks.

The few seconds it takes for her to pass are precious. Lately it's been 'Hello' instead of shared smiles.

She used to have monthly passes. She flashed the ticket, a smiling glance up from her book. Occasionally a quiet Thank You.

But lately she's switched to 10-rides. So like the smile-graduated-to-hello outside the gate, their interaction on the train is escalating.

He takes her ticket (always from her left hand, no ring, there's no ring, he thinks, hoping.) Punch once, hand it back. Hello again to her. Hello. Thank you. A flash of her promising smile. Again.

Okay, he thinks. A small sigh. It's 4:58. Maybe not today after all.


There she is. Rushing. Not smiling. That quick look over. The smile that could save him.

Today, he thinks. My train. She's on my train.

She hurries by, thinking. Always thinking.

And singing softly to herself: 'Take a break Driver 8, Driver 8 take a break, we've been on this shift too long.'

He can't hear it.

My train, he thinks. She's on my train today.
I am listening to: R.E.M. - Driver 8
I am reading: The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett
And I am: Always thinking


Posolxstvo said...

So, is this just the beginning, or is this meant to be a standalone vignette? It could hold up as is, or I could see where you could add. Just curious, because when I posted my story the other day, I felt it was a standalone thing, but people asked for more. In a way, I felt they missed the point but soon realized that maybe I was the one that missed it.

Either way, it was clear, vivid, and worth reading more of.



wonderful! Wonderful! I love it when you write like this!!

Hedy said...

Thanks, Pos & Crusty, thank you so much. I wrote this more than two years ago as a standalone but I revisited it because of your thing last week, Pos. Looking at it with fresh eyes, it could definitely be something more. Maybe a short story. Thanks again for the kind words and inspiration.

the dilf said...

GOD DAMMIT!...My train is the 5:10.

phatdoggy said...

Sounds like Dick is hot for a chick who feels a little squishy for Dale, Jr.


Hedy said...

Hey Phatdoggy - Dick is on our morning train. This is about a completely different dude. :)