subway station - quotes and descriptions to inspire creative writing
The subway station could be a year ago at the dead of night, but perhaps only in a blackout. It's noon and the platform is only occupied by my tatty boots and rucksack. Under the steady beam of my flashlight it's the same old place it ever was. Grey above, grey below and a tunnel of black. The air is just as stale and surprisingly the litter remains, only now it is as stationary as the old train that sits with its doors open. I consider taking a look in there but after a few steps forwards I detect a familiar smell, urine maybe, human definitely. That's not good. I don't play nice with others, not anymore. Without a conscious thought my hand already holds a sharp blade. No-one could tell I'm a girl, not unless they have a light, and most don't. Looking at me from in there they wouldn't even know I'm not a Protector. Then a dark head appears around the corner blinking into the beam, but only two feet from the ground. I almost yell at them to get off their knees, but it's a kid.
Found in Darwin's Ghost - first draft, authored by .
The platform at this late hour looks like a murder scene before the crime. There is no-one here but me right now, and since I'm not the killing type I guess that makes me Jane Doe. I stare into the black tunnel, willing those red lights to blink back at me, growing closer, announcing that at least I am on my way. The quiet chills me, nothing good happens in deserted parts of this city. I hold my hand out to feel for the movement of air that comes as the train pushes it along, but there is nothing. Nothing but the dirty grey floor and the worn yellow band under my boots. I shouldn't even be this close to the edge, but it's not like I can get a knock from behind right now. Suddenly adrenaline floods through me and I turn abruptly to stare at the empty platform behind me, paranoia, that's not good either. So I face forwards and diligently study the subway map I already know. I am almost calm when I hear a sneeze.
Ryan slid through the subway throng as efficiently as a deer in a thicket. It was lucky for them he was no pick pocket because he could have easily made more money that way than MI5 paid, and at less personal risk too. His pursuer was now stuck and resorting to standing on tip-toes to see over the heads of the packed-in commuters. Ryan had by now acquired a new hat without its owner noticing and stood on the edge of the platform, sucking in the stale tunnel air to re-oxidize his blood after the hide 'n' run-like-hell game he'd just been playing on the streets of New York. He wasn't supposed to be here of course, the Americans hardly ever gave permission for this kind of operation. The tell-tale displacement of air announced the arrival of the train. Now was the difficult part, to appear to board but actually hide under the lip of the platform until the mobsters had heaved their overly armed bodies either onto the train or away up the stairs.
In the daytime the subway station was a seething mass of humanity. Everyone from every walk of life was shoulder to shoulder, in each other's faces, no personal space, no exceptions. But now at the end of my shift there is space between the people and somehow that makes it all the more awkward. When it's crowded you take in no information about anyone, they are just things in your way. Moving, smelling, awkward, rude things. Now the faces of the city are looking at me. Thinking about me. Judging this girl that normally goes unnoticed in the throng. And I am looking at them, forming opinions, deciding on the safest place to stand, nearer to who, further from who. Then I realize my judgments are based on how well the person dresses and I am ashamed. With a whine and a displacement of air the train arrives and I hurry on. Perched on the hard seat I flick through my phone and look at messages I already read, anything to avoid eye contact.
...sitting here in the Ossington subway station waiting for the northbound bud, with the dim light filtering through the film of ash and oil on the plate-glass windows...