She awoke to the shrillness of a whistle alerting all to an arrival. Soon after, she is stepping from the train into this next place with its entirety new to her; it feels unfamiliar, though not altogether alien, dappled in hopefulness—a shapeless haze of perfumed tobacco hanging stubbornly in the air between the befuddled craze of rushed faces.
Like a dusty chapel, this station, with peppered light peering in through tall windows which stand majestically all around her as she comes to the door of her carriage. Whilst exiting the train, she cannot help but stare up at these limpid sentinels with a smile, her reverence leaving her awed yet awfully unaware of her footing as she clumsily stumbles down the thin stairs from the carriage onto the platform below.
Her body now a crumpled thing upon the concrete, she lifts her head from it to view her surroundings, only to discover that she had become immediately derisable, just as suddenly as she had arrived. For as soon as she had moved into the atmosphere of this new place, she found herself amidst the tickled gasp and hushed japery of strangers, themselves having witnessed her misstep, their amusement causing her to blush with ripened embarrassment from her splayed and toppled state.
She senses the cheeriness she had been feeling drain from her, like a rain’s rivulet through a gutter grate; her gleefulness at having arrived slipping deep into the darkness of a sewer, an ebullience now fouled and washed away. Resigned and resolved, she picks herself up from the ground, brushing away whatever grime had collected upon hem and sleeve, strongly fearing that this was not the place for her.
Already, without a purposed word or deed, she is shamed. There is no correction to be had, no second attempt to be made. As mocking jeers echo in her head like startling cracks of thunder, as her heart strains from beneath its pace, sorrow finds its place within the vacancy of her once more. She apologizes to the blurred air and she climbs the stairs, returning to her recently departed compartment where she awaits the whistle to shriek the disinterested news of her departure, the train slowly moving from the station as if reluctant to carry her. She apologizes once more—for perhaps we are just tired, she says to her self—and she sadly gazes into the morning’s gauziness from behind the teary pane of a carriage window, its glassiness dipped in the delicate bluishness of dew.