Kallang. Racing lights outside as the train cuts through space and time like an arrow through water. The man boards and finds a single seat. On the bar, leans a flirtatious, clearly committed couple. She’s dressed comfortably, only he has eyes for her. On the window, another less advanced couple, her lips still red for kissing. She uses the momentum of the stop as the perfect, innocent excuse to lean her heavy weight into his stout body. He only has eyes for her.
The man looks at his phone. His hair combed, his t-shirt delicately pressed. Jeans amicably tight, matching shoes. He sits silently. Unsure, wondering if his date went well. He didn’t want text too early. He had a good time. He was trying. He enjoyed the conversation, her shy hand touching his wrist to check the time. An excuse?
Paya Lebar. He looks at his phone. It was a good date. But now sitting on the train, he feels even more alone.
Eunos. He feels the wet, lightness of being. Momentarily, he hates how he is beginning to feel like maybe he shouldn’t care. Treat her like dirt so you won’t get hurt. Suppose she texts before she goes to bed. Suppose they fall in love. Suppose she gives him that sweet, light joy again?
He looks at the picture he had sheepishly ask of them together. Should he delete it or save it. She didn’t ask for it.
Bedok. Bedok bedok bedok.
Maybe he can send the picture to her. Maybe he should text her just to make sure she did get home safe. An excuse? Maybe he should have insisted on sending her home even when she had declined. Oh fuck. She wanted it to end. But then, was that a kiss or a goodnight peck?
Simei. The lady with the red lips plonks into a vacated seat with her boyfriend. She doesn’t need any excuse now to press her body against his side, legs crossed toward him. That kiss. Maybe it was the kiss that killed it.
He feels his phone vibrate. He looks at it, too hastily.
He smiles. Tampines.