The old man entered the overcrowded, uncomfortable subway station knowing that this was a place where people get really pissed off and he said to himself that he should avoid all conversations about religion and politics and assume that everyone is carrying a knife or a gun. He had a Metro Card and he knew where to wait for the train, how to board it and ride on it and which stop he should exit at, but he was concerned with the inability of the people on the subway being able to communicate with each other. He was carrying a rather large box with a live chicken inside of it, but it wasn’t rush hour yet, and he could keep it on his lap. He was scarred that he might be mugged for the package that he was carrying, but he promised his granddaughter a chicken for her birthday and he was not about to give it to a thief.
He had made this trip many times before, and he wouldn’t have to ask anyone for help, but as he looked around, he saw that the people all looked strange and he sensed that they didn’t seem love each other. As he entered the subway car, a young woman dropped a pamphlet on the floor that said, “The end of the world is near”. He took this as a warning that he should pay heed to the words of the prophets that were written on the subway walls and in the tenement halls, as maybe that is where he would find the real answers to life.
Written for Fandango’s Flash Fiction Challenge #88.