What's Your Name, Miss?
She rides the train every morning. Phone in one hand, a flower in the other – he notices that they differ every day, not a single one the same. He wonders whom they are for. He catches her eyes – they're green, emerald, really, he thinks distractedly, and he gives her a small smile. She stares indifferently, and he wonders if she even saw him, or she just chose to ignore. Face heating up, he is about to rip his eyes off her, until he notices as she tentatively pulls the corners of her mouth, trying but failing to give a sincere smile. Still, it's perfect to him. He shyly averts his eyes and sighs to himself, annoyed – damn, he should have held her gaze longer (preferably forever.)
Every day, he boards the train (today, he decides to sit near the door, which is coincidentally right across the aisle to her seat), and she's always there, sitting in the seat that's almost falling apart from all the rust covering it. It makes him wonder why she does. She puts on her earphones, and he catches a glimpse of pink in her wallpaper. She always takes off her earbuds when she's about to get off the train, and the sight of it strangely makes his chest tighten. (Don't go.) As she waits for her stop to be announced, he watches as she fiddles with the flower in her hand, subtly trembling – not enough to be noticed, but he does. (Maybe it's just the fact that he knows her so well, that one glance and he-)
He knows her so well, yet he doesn't know her at all.
He doesn't know what draws him to her. He doesn't know why she boards the train, doesn't know why she picks that seat, of all places. He doesn't know a thing about her. What he does know, is that she's unique. But it is apparently enough for him to take an interest in her, and watch her from the corner of his eyes, then immediately avert them once she begins to take off her earphones. It becomes the highlight of his days. It has become a routine to him. He will board the train, and she will be there, her earphones in, bobbing her head to the beat, in the seat that has become associated with her face. After the many months he's known her by face, you'd think he would have known her name by now.
She has become such a constant factor in his life, that one day, when he boards the train as usual, and he doesn't find her in her usual seat across his own (he already claimed the seat as his), he feels his speed up. Anxiety claws at him, and what-ifs bombard his mind (what if she doesn't come back? What if she changed to a different route? What if he doesn't see her again?) He berates himself for not manning up for all eight months, two weeks, and five days he has known her, and ask for her name (if he's lucky, her number). He feels defeated, and he cradles his cheeks within his palms, elbows resting on his knees. He feels a presence beside him. One look at a pair of emerald eyes, and he takes his chance.
"Miss, what's your name?"
Today, she has a pair of cherry blossoms with her. She holds out one to him.