Secret

“Tell me a secret,” he says.

She lets a heartbeat pass before responding.

“If I told you a secret, I’d have to kill you.”

He laughs. It’s a clichéd response. She even says it as though it’s a cliché.

“No, go on. Tell me a secret. Something you’ve never told anyone else.”

She knows he thinks he’s flirting. He’s making occasional eye contact, stirring his coffee for slightly too long, looking up through dark eyelashes.

She smiles at him. He’s good looking in a cautious way. His features don’t shout too loud, but they work. She appraises him. He shifts in his seat, suddenly uncomfortable under her gaze. She remembers herself and injects some warmth into the North Sea grey of her eyes.

“I’ll tell you a secret, then,” he says.

Please don’t, she thinks. I need to get through today unscathed.

Platform announcements echo vaguely in the background. Cups and saucers chink together. Other people’s voices murmur, fractured by the occasional laugh. He says something and laughs. She doesn’t hear him until the words, “Your turn.”

She sighs and looks towards the central departure board.

“I killed a man once.”

So easy, when you put your mind to it.

 

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