My brain screams in disgust, but my face maintains a neutral disposition.
A quirky man in black boarded.
He takes off his Batman backpack and sits down to my left.
His rugged face is covered with white stubble,
and his hair covered by a Seahawks cap.
His thin and graying ponytail spread out over his back.
I can hear rock music blasting in his ears.
Everything about him is dull except the 4 gold rings on his wrinkly fingers.
Fingers as wrinkly as mine.
Pale blue eyes stare vacantly through black-rimmed glasses.
He's near and far-sighted.
I'm guessing he's old.
A middle-aged Asian woman follows behind.
It's 3 stops before I can examin what is in her arms.
It looks like celery...
Oh it's tulips!
A memory stirs of Valentines Day and the giving of roses for a loved one.
It was just yesterday when I was carrying a bouquet of my own.
A bouquet of roses, freshly cut from a garden.
I remember approaching her door,
ringing the bell,
hearing the buzz,
seeing the man.
Crushed petals at the bottom of a can.
Torn and crumpled wrapping paper.
Screams and tears.
A black eye.
A child crying in a corner.
His father yelling at his mother about the young man at the door.
What could he have done?
The child never did anything.
The child could not have done anything.
He sat there hugging his knees against his chest, praying his mom will be all right this time.
Is it a sin to love?
Was it a sin to love?
The memory fades. I'm back in my seat.
How did I get here?
The last thing I remember is the man running towards me.
I finger the scar on my scalp underneath my own greying hair.
The Asian woman is seated to my right now.
She wipes at the beads of sweat on her forehead.
A look of relief on her face.
Her flushed face flashes once more in my mind.
And no more.
The white-stubbled man is drumming his fingers to the rhythm of his song.
Only he does not know how fortunate it is to live in the present.
He turns and smiles as if he knows me.
A young man grabs my hand and called me "dad."
He tells me "we're here."
I follow him, but I don't know why and to where.
I see the name "Sarah Blanchard" on a stone plate.
1971. 1971. Has it been so long?
Is this all that's left of my lasting trauma of that memory?
My last memory.