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Grade
9

It is precisely 7:02 am, and the 7’o clock train, the steel blue engine that had never failed you before, is running behind schedule. It’s never really done this for you before, so your shocked expression is acceptable in this occasion. The electric sign on the front of the track shuns you, belittling your importance with a loud, obnoxious “delayed” in neon orange. The ghostly station you’ve tended to for most of your youth sighs in sadness, its paling layer of green paint peeling. A sign of its severe disappointed that you, their most trusted, on-time confidant, is running late to this meeting of utmost importance. You sigh in agreement, the Looking impatiently at your watch, you stomp your feet exactly three times, trying to get the blood circulating through your body through the bitter cold. You look back to the track. Deep breaths.

You briefly run your slender fingers through your neatly kept cropped auburn hair. It’s never grown nicely on its own, so you’ve been using Yuna, the really expensive shampoo your mom said to never use because it’s full of crap, but your coworker Rachel, the one with a nice pair of lips and who always wears those skirts a few inches too short, said:

“You just had to have it.”

You got yours apple blossom scented. Ma wouldn’t complain anyways, she’s too busy enjoying your hard earned money. She’s been swimming in it recently, ‘cause:

“I’m your mother, don’t you want me happy?”

You do; at least to a certain degree. You’re not made of money. Yet.

Your hair is combed over quite neatly; you’ve never strayed from brushing your hair approximately one hundred strokes in the morning. At this point it’s for the sake of tradition; after a certain amount of time, your conscience told you that you’d look much better with your hair short, and now you must suffer the consequences of your brash and ill-planned actions.

You note that, at 7:25 this evening, you will make sure to perform the very same ritual before you rest for a perfect slumber of 10 hours (8 to 6 on weekdays, mind you.) Breathy, peeved huffs are being hissed into your ear. It's almost as if your mind and mouth are running on two seperate tracks. You turn your attention towards the clock that has always been fifteen seconds behind. It annoys you greatly, the sinful ticking clashing into your ears, drumming in its imperfections. You attempted to fix it as a child, but there must be something about that clock that wants to be wrong.

Rather disgusted, you turn your attention away from the wall, and scan the almost desolate railway.

At this time, you notice the quirky young lady who has been making shy glances at you, oh, for the past fifteen, twenty minutes? She’s fair, her hair rolling in short, bouncy waves of chestnut brown, all the way down to her shoulders. Her body is petite and trim, perfectly proportionate for her stature, guessed to be about 5”4.

You can’t help but notice her eyes. Oh, they were nice, a deep hazel to compliment her warm color palette. Ox-like, even, but there was something off. Those bright, eager eyes ignited when you greeted her gaze, but they were only a fraction short of happiness. She used loud, flirty hand movements to introduce herself, to ask for your name and phone number, to set up a nice outing in the park for Saturday at 12pm. But in that fraction of time, her eyes told you that she wasn’t interested in a romance. In that brief span of time you saw the wheels in her head turning, deciding best how to seduce you into giving her all of your money, all with a smile on her face. I note she doesn’t even bother sticking around the train station, as she hadn’t brought her belongings with her initially. The desperate, poorly-rated actor had fled her scene, thinking wise of her failed cash grab.

Right now the train isn’t here; it hasn’t been for several “right nows.” Oh, you long to look at the time, to scold the incompetent conductor for keeping you waiting for so long, but you can’t bear to the look at that lovely, accurate watch of yours. It would be a stab to the gut to see, it won’t help anything you know. You have to assure yourself that the only rational conclusion is that your train is only slightly behind. Only slightly, and the next train will arrive within a moment’s notice, it wouldn’t keep you waiting intentionally, right?

At this point you’re pacing to and fro, burning holes into your socks. The wait is agitating! You can vividly see your boss’s pasty pancake face, his upturned pig snout sending snot at your direction as he rages on about how you’re late again. There hasn’t been a before, but, being the old bigoted twat that he is, decides to belittle the most important asset this damned company has ever known! You hadn’t worked on weekends and holidays, sacrificing free time, so that your promising career doesn’t end over being tardy once! That monkey-brain buffoon doesn’t even appreciate how well he has it, his whole family being old money, silver spoon in hand, and never being concerned over when his next meal will be, or if he can afford losing sleep in exchange for overtime. You have worked for over ten years at this corporation, your 20s lost to cascades of papers and countless night shifts. You put having a family on hold, and even sacrificed date night with your long-forgotten ex. No one has offered you the time. Not once. That wicked business, this old tired station, this goddamned train owes you their time, not their 15-second delayed clocks but with the actual time and energy you’ve spent pouring into their lives.

You cry, alone, forsaken, waiting for the steel blue engine that has never let you down before.

 

State
FL
Zip Code
22365