By Alfie Hardman
A short story.
We’ve been learning about how to craft personas so as to see that specific audience we need to hit when selling brand products. I try not to wear headphones on the tube so that I see what’s going on around me even if it is mundane its watching life and this sparks ideas.
The bee had settled down. But it wasn’t for long, the tube juddered again towards Green Park and like the people packed inside the bee was jostled slightly from its position. Henry had seen how it had hugged the top right vicinity by the light so as… well to presumably stay warm he thought. Awake once more it floated rather arrogantly around the carriage.
He looked down on the floor by his feet for room. The bag with tools he’d been carrying all day were heavy and he looked to place it within his feet so as to leave out any opportunity for people to trip on it. After doing so he looked up and saw alarm in the women standing opposite him eyes. Flicking them from him to just above his shoulder like watching a game of mini tennis.
Henry realising it must be the bee slowly raised his free right hand to waft it away. Looking round he saw it float lazily back to the light. The woman’s face sprung up in surprise when Henry had offered something back. “Like the poor buggers had too much to drink I think,” he gave a soft one beat chuckle “look how tired he is.” The stranger gave a reassuring smile, “It’s that time of the season when they start to die. I’ve no idea how it got in here” and looked down at the floor again.
Henry’s gaze rested back on the bee. The rest of the people in the carriage were acting remarkably cool and had done so even from Stockwell were the bee had boarded. All perhaps, except from the man two people down from him that had whisked his hand away from the bee’s area and opted to hold an alternative handle. Even then no one had battered an eye lid. The suited and booted city worker that had boarded roughly at the same time as the bee. He had looked around to see if anyone had noticed. His expression looking ridged and slightly tight. It was as if he had breached some code.
The train whistled on and Henry closed his eyes for a moment. He always did after Euston when a heave of people would exit to catch late night trains freeing up space for him. It always heightened his senses somehow. Feeling himself sway this way and that his thoughts shifting from fixing Stephan’s bloody hinges to getting home to fixing the broken goal at the end of the garden. Micky’s head practically spinning when it happened, tears streaking down his fleshy cheeks.
It was thinking about Micky that made him do it he thought when walking from the tube. A piercing cry not far from his left knee made him swing round. There on the floor was the bee squirming uncomfortably on the floor. Above it a toddler whimpered, holding her wrist and also looking down timidly at the bee.
Without thinking Henry lifted his foot and crushed it. Rather awkwardly he left his foot there, so the child would not have to see the remains of the think that stung her. He then adjusted his right one to get a more natural balance.