By Chris Mason
Copyright 2012 by Christopher A. Mason
Smashwords Edition, License Notes
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This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and events are a product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to any persons living or dead, businesses, incidents, or locales is purely coincidental.
When the MAX train reached the Rose Quarter, Jason closed up his laptop and put it away in his worn leather backpack. He always spent the last few minutes of each day’s half-hour ride watching his fellow commuters, wondering where they were headed and what they were thinking. Outside, the sky had that determined, bluish-gray look that meant there would be no sun today, and so the people-watching would be dour. Train riders are different on gloomy days than on sunny ones: they hunch more, talk less, shake their soggy newspapers irritably.
Jason recognized a few people, though he didn’t know their names. A middle-aged woman with long, silver hair clenched a baby blue umbrella between her knees and read a paperback romance novel, as she did every day, while she slowly nibbled a muffin. A boy who looked too young to drive, or to shave, was nevertheless dressed in an expensive charcoal gray suit; he stared out the window, clutching a black umbrella in one hand and a long, black overcoat in the other.