The rain splashes down, invisible in a dark night. It explodes in thick watery bursts on the pavement, where its presence is pinned by the headlights of a passing car. I see the shadow of a person approaching. They pass by at pace, and my mind lights up with a memory of you.

I was going somewhere, you were coming back. That’s what I remember. You were wearing your long black coat, over your black clothes. You seemed to emerge from the night, like a Film Noir hero. All style. The street lights sliced your figure from the surrounding black, and I saw the shape of you. That slim, that average, that all important figure.

So struck was I by the strange but the strangely familiar, I faltered. It became your turn to see me first. So odd to me, never to you, that you would stop to talk. To the unknown girl, the girl on the sidelines, dancing in the wallpaper. And I think I hated you for it. For pretending this was fine, for thinking this was normal. For not comprehending, or understanding, for treating me, like everyone else.

You carried a big black umbrella, and you seemed almost like a gentleman, I remember. Stopping to ask how I was in the thick black of an October night. It was your favourite outfit; the courteous, polite, young man. I can’t even remember what you said, just how you looked. Black clothes against brown eyes, stubble clinging to a chiselled cheek. You fool.

This all sticks still, imprinted by the rush of a hundred feelings that stuck my mind in that moment. Though those things felt, are lost to me now. Forgotten, feelings forged in another girl, in another life. A cold romantic moment, empty and gone. Just like him.


Throughout the Covid outbreak my writing teacher is keeping us going by setting us writing exercises based on specific word combinations. This is based on the words: hundred, cheek, umbrella.

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