there were plenty of good places, mostly single seats not next to people that would be noticeable. i chose the double with the businessman and legs stretched out across the floor. probably because i had a bag and could put it on the seat next to me, but maybe for a different reason. he didn't move his legs much. just enough for me to slide into place and feel awkward and then stare at me. so i stared back. i didn't take long for him to look away so as he did i slowly bent down and sank my teeth into his leg. somewhere a little higher than the knee cap, fat and fleshy. his body moved away violently, but only after i'd had enough time to get a good hold so that my head moved with it. a hard shove put me in the isle next to him on my knees. lifting myself up back onto the seat, i picked up my book and was about to start reading when he chose to say something stopped and punched me across the eye area. not too hard, sort of a glancing swipe, but enough to put it out of action. then again, but this time at the corner of my top lip. this one hurt a little more. as my mouth filled with blood from a gash where my teeth and gums had been pushed together, i looked back as his shaking face. you could almost smell the adrenaline go through him. a woman i'd taken for just another open face, was now crawling him aurally back to his normal attitude, but it took some doing. upon success she started some words on me.

'why the fuck would you do something like that.'

'now look what's happened.'

'this thing never happens on an early morning train'

and other stuff that got boring quickly. i didn't listen to any of it but it was quite loud. then the man started as well. he'd even got out his mobile and was ringing the police when the train arrived at my stop. he tried to grab my arm as i went to leave but i blew a fine mist of bloody spit into his face and eyes and probably up his nose as well. as i walked along the platform i could see him blurrily through the window and his handkerchief wasn't as white and ironed any more.

Training. 1996
© eric pentle. all editions signed by the artist.
Words written by the artist.