Hopping Trains

Hopping Trains

One scene, two points of view.  Two stories for the price of one.

This Above All

It’s not the first time I’ve found myself here at the station, not the first time I’ve taken the notion to hop a train and leave.  I swear, this time, I’ll follow through!  This time for sure.  I owe it to myself, don’t I?

Stupid I’m not, or so I thought.  I’m a confident, independent woman, with a life, and a promising career on the stage!  I am!

I was.

But I traded it all, everything, for the arms of a wanted man.

When he asked me to come with him, I thought we had an understanding.  More like a MIS-understanding, his expectations and mine.

I don’t mean to complain against him.  The way I see it, he can’t help being him any more than I can help being me.  If his partner hadn’t died, maybe then the two of us might have stood a chance.  But there will never be another pair like Heyes and Curry.  And thinking I could fill those boots, I must have been a fool.

Sometimes I catch him looking at me, watching, and I have to admit I can only guess at what he’s thinking.  That he’s made a mistake?  That I’ve let him down?  That he wants out?

Then again, it’s not fair for me to project my feelings onto him.  Frustration.  Disappointment.  And since I’m the one waiting for the first train headed anywhere but here, I guess I’m the one who wants out.

It’s not that I don’t love him, because Lord knows, I do.  And it’s not that I think he doesn’t care. It’s just that… I barely remember the woman I used to be.  She’s a shadow, a memory, a dream.  A stranger.

I need to get out of here and find her again!  Find ME again!  Before I disappear completely!  Before every last ounce of self-respect…

“Hey!”

I quickly swipe my gloved hand across my cheek, concealing any evidence of my secret anguish.  I meet his eyes, and smile.  Is it genuine, or an actress’s best performance?  Can he tell the difference?  Can I?

He smiles.  My course is charted.

Deliberately, I climb the steps of the hotel, hand in hand with him. At the train’s whistle, I hesitate, and turn.

“You alright?”

“Of course!” I pretend, and silently, I say goodbye.  Goodbye to the woman I used to be, the woman I’ll never see again.  The woman whose self-respect just hopped that train.

Sadness

Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.

June 2011

Tomorrow

I buried him in an unmarked grave, the better half of our partnership.

Two weeks later, I left the body of the scum that killed him rotting on the street of a filthy, lawless town, along with any last hope of amnesty.  After that, days and nights ran together, like some mixed up, crazy nightmare.  Nameless towns.  Faceless people.  And quiet.  Nothing but quiet.

Alone.

Then, suddenly, you were there.  Like a beacon of light through a moonless night, shining, inviting.  So full of life.  So warm and vibrant.

I was cold, empty.  Dead.  You had everything I lacked.  Everything I wanted.  And what a thief wants, he takes.

I took.

You freely gave.

But the more I took, the more you gave.  And the more you gave, the more I wanted.  No.  That’s wrong.  I needed.  Needed you like a drowning man needs a lifeline.  I grasped, and held on tight.  Because as long as I was holding you, it couldn’t pull me under, the whirlpool that was trying so hard to swallow me.

“Come with me.”

I must have muttered the words in a moment of passion.  In desperation.  Who would have believed, you’d actually agree?  I had nothing to give you.  Where we’d go, I had no clue.

I just wanted to feel alive.

***

From a distance, I watch you, waiting for that train.  A single teardrop courses down your cheek, and I know, I’ve put it there.  A stronger man would leave you. A better man would never have claimed you.  But me, I choose to hurt you, hoping to push you away, before you let me sap the last ounce of life from both of us.

Do it!  Leave!  Get on that train!  Now, before I bury you, the way I buried him.  Before I change my…

“Hey!”  Too late.  I can’t let go.

I smile my outlaw smile, stealing your heart again.  Taking what I need.

I grasp your hand, leading you away from the station, back to the hotel.  Don’t leave!

“You alright?”  I know you’re not, but I need to hear the lie.

One day, I swear, I’ll let you go!  Let you hop that train and leave.

Tomorrow.  Not today.

Today, just one more day, I need to feel alive.

Iris

Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.

June 2011

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