Wednesday, January 21, 2009


As the train lurched out of the station, he whispered 'Down, lie down.' The metal of the roof was hard and cold against Birdie's cheek. She closed her eyes. She was shaking with fear, but as usual the moment she switched off from the real world other images flooded in. The noise of the shuddering train, the screech of metal on metal, the rush of the air faded away. As his coat covered her, shielding her from the tunnels above, she felt something warm, familiar. An image of a pillow fight when she was a girl flooded in. She had been at her grandmother's house in Connecticut. Old down pillows burst open. She remembered throwing armfuls into the air, laughing and dancing with her sister. 'Feathers?' she thought. Just as the last carriage disappeared into the blackness, three men raced onto the platform.
'Shit, we missed her.' The skinny dark haired guy balled his fist, kicked hard at the vending machine on the platform. Eyes narrowed in a sallow pock marked face. 'We'll find you. The time's come.'
'Do you th-th think she knows?' His friend with the greased back hair sidled up, flinching as he span round.
'She has no idea.' He flicked the collar of the little guy's jacket.
The third man ran a long, pointed thumbnail slowly across his lower lip. 'He's here. He's been here. I can feel it.' The other two stopped scrapping.
'W- w- what do you want us to do?'
'Go back to her apartment. Wait there.'
'Where are you going?' The skinny one raised his chin, sniffing the air. 'You're right, I can smell him. He was here.'
'I'll call you if I need you.' The man undid his black floor length coat, glanced round as he tossed it over to the little one. They were alone apart from an old tramp lying comatose on the platform. 'Make sure he sees nothing ...' The man shrugged, rolled his shoulders like someone getting up from a hard day at the desk. Then one, two dark wings unfurled. Black, glossy feathers flashed in the sodium light as he stepped off the platform.
'Man, I w- w- wish I could do that,' the little guy said as they watched him fly into the darkness of the tunnel ...


Rowena said...

Woo Hoo!

I love seeing what people come up with. This is so exciting. A whole new story.

And I love the characterization of those bad guys (?) on the platform.

Wings, scent... a pillow fight? Great images.

Kate Lord Brown said...

Oh good ... wasn't sure which way to take your baby, hoped you'd like! Good to see comments are back on ... something funny going on at this end!

scarlet-blue said...

"He flicked the collar of the little guy's jacket."

Exactly how little is the little guy?????


JES said...

Ah, Kate -- this is excellent.

You dropped it in almost incidentally, by-the-way, but in that brief passage "as usual, the moment she switched off from the real world" is an open door to, well, just about anywhere.

As Rowena said, nice job, too, with the guys on the platform. Especially the BIG guy.

Kate Lord Brown said...

Scarlet - oh ... about 'so' high :)

John - here, there, anywhere ... am I the only one who is slightly scared/curious/excited about where this is going to go ..?

Son of Incogneato said...

Fantastic! This is getting spookier by the minute. That one dude is one badassmuthafucka, that's for sure. He does not wish out heroine well.

Still something weird with the comments on this post. I had to go into edit to access it.

Son of