Friday, July 18, 2008

Habit-Forming, part 1

For but a moment did he hesitate, blinking in the sunlight, before the man stepped out of the building. His head high about most, and his fram thing and light, the man stood like a piercing claw in the stark open space. Clad in a tan suit which seemed to accentuate his near skeletal form, he ran a hand over his black, slicked-back hair and then slid it across his darkly-skinned cheek to tap against his chin as he squinted against the sunlight. He spotted a small, metal bench sitting snugly between trashcans and an ashtray against the building and immediately began to make his way to the safety of a place to sit.

Coughing briskly into his hand, he withdrew a small, thin cigarette from his coat pocket and lit it, letting the smoke drift lightly into the open air and mix with the city aromas. He took a long, smooth drag, sighing it out in time with the sound of an oncoming shuttle on an upper platform from where he sat.

"Thought I'd quit these damn things when I got this job." He said, but it was difficult to tell if he was referring to the cigarettes or the entire experience of waiting in an airport. The tall, morose man scratched his chin where there used to be stubble just this morning and took another drag from the cigarette, his eyes flitting from car to car of the passing shuttle.

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