Categories
fantasy fiction

Dear Fellow Passenger…

I remember the first day I saw you. I was not impressed at all. You pushed past me in your rush to get onto the bus. I was wearing a gorgeous pair of stilettos impossible to walk in because I woke up in a bad mood and wanted to cheer myself up by wearing beautiful shoes. Yes I do that. I know you would tell me it is crazy, but when I am in a sulky mood, I wear my favourite stilettos for work. By the end of the day I can hardly walk.

But that first day I saw you….after you pushed past me you slumped down into a seat and slept for most of the journey home. You did not even notice me giving you a contemptuous glance as I walked past you and settled down in a seat right at the back of the bus. I thought you were an arrogant twit.

By the end of that bus journey I had softened slightly towards you. You were drooling against the window you know. A few of us fellow passengers smiled at each other as we heard you snoring. It was obvious you were exhausted. That gave me a reason to overlook you for not paying attention to who was around you when you were rushing along for the bus.

The reason I slipped that flirty note with my phone number into your pocket….I am not sure. I guess I wanted to take a chance. I was so bored of everything in my life being the same. I wanted something new. I just had no idea that it would be you.

I am so glad that you texted me later than night. That first night was such a rush. You were so curious to know who I was. But I was shy. I didn’t want to share any personal information with you. I wanted just to chat about music, food, movies and books.

We found a lot to talk about that night. I loved your sense of humour, the way you teased me. I was smiling to myself all night long as our flurry of texts continued – ping ping ping – went my mobile. Eventually we both had to say good night because it was getting late. When I boarded the 157 bus the following morning, I saw you sitting there with your Starbucks grinning. You had no idea it was me. All the way down Louisiana Boulevard I was gazing over at you and wondering if you were smiling because of our messages the night before. You jumped off near the Marriot and I wondered where you were headed. If you had stayed on the bus, you would have seen me leave at Constitution Avenue. I work in a law firm there. Not that I have ever told you that – because we never share too much personal information.

For the past six months the highlight of every day is being on the same bus as you. Sometimes we miss each other. Those days I feel lonely. But when I see you, I feel aglow after the email I read from you the night before and I always wonder whether you are reading my reply to you. Is that why you look so happy?

I keep on wishing I had the courage to greet you face to face, to tell you that it is me – that I am the stranger that you have this secret relationship with. But I don’t know what you would think of me. Would I be a disappointment to you? You never notice me, the real me, when we are fellow passengers. You are always so busy looking at your phone since we started to message each other. Do you realize we have had text conversations when I was sitting less than three metres away from you?

Seeing you several times a week is both joy and torture. I am so scared to lose what we have. I am so afraid of rejection. Seeing your smile has become one of the most meaningful parts of the day. Is it me who is making you happy? Am I deceiving myself? If you knew who I really was, would you drop me in an instant? Would you see me and brush me off as that stupid blonde in the stilettos?

How long are we going to go on like this for? The weeks pass by, the seasons change and we seem to be hooked on each other. Two people sending each other messages even though we have never met in real life….although I know who you are, and I often sit close to you, as close as I dare, knowing that you are my secret friend. It’s just strange because you don’t know it’s me.

You told me I am your secret soul mate, even though you don’t know who I am. But you do know everything about my heart. You unzipped me and claimed me as yours. You gave me the name Miss Anne Onimous. You told me to call you Mystery Guy. We ended up being Guy and Annie. It was cute. It was cute until that day I decided to leave the bus at your stop. I knew it was wrong. I knew it. I should never have done it. I was walking a few metres behind you pretending to talk on my phone. You picked up a breakfast muffaletta from Jason’s Deli. You were eating it while you walked up to your offices. It felt so wrong. I knew I was invading your privacy. I was just so profoundly curious to know where you worked. Now I know.

When you told me that everyone calls your boss Lord Farquaad and you told me all about the Christmas party with your colleagues and what you could remember of your drunken antics, it unnerved me that I knew exactly where you worked. What is even worse is that I looked at the website for the company and saw your real name, Ross Hendrey, against your photograph, and now I know you work as a Financial Advisor. Why did you tell me in you emails you were a builder? Was that just for security reasons? I can understand if it was. I am not really a hair dresser. I am a Paralegal. I was inspired by Elle Woods from Legally Blonde. You would probably roll your eyes if I told you that. You roll your eyes quite a lot you know.

Only….it’s so much fun being Guy and Annie. You seem so happy. What we are doing seems safe. I am so sorry I followed you to work that day. I know you don’t even realize, but I have felt terrible ever since. I am not a creepy stalker. I just love our secret friendship. I love you. The desire to know more about you had built up and I made a rash and foolish choice to leave the bus at the same time as you. I regret what I did. But I am so afraid now. I am so afraid because I should have told you months ago that I know who you are.

Once I knew your name it was easy to find your Facebook page – you are probably the world’s worst saxophone player – but I love you for it. Sometimes at night when I cannot sleep, I listen to the videos you have posted on your Facebook page of you playing the saxophone. I know things we agreed we would not share with each other – your birthday, the names of your siblings, I know that you have a dog called “Sergeant Pepper”. Things you never told me about yourself. I know which high school and which college you went to. I know things I should not know.

Now I feel terrible. It’s like being trapped in a limbo that I can never escape. We are doomed to be perpetual strangers because I can never introduce myself to you now. I am terrified you will hate me for knowing too much about you, more than you shared with me. Terrified.

You tell me you are in love with me, but how will you feel if you know that one day I followed you to work and that stupid mistake allowed me to discover your real name and learn all sorts of things about you online? I knew it was wrong. I was just fascinated by you. But I went too far, and now I have ruined any possibility of you and I being real friends and not just secret friends – which I am so sad about. My heart tells me that being secret friends is just as wrong. It’s just as wrong because you are no longer a secret to me, only you don’t know that. That’s not fair for you. I need to come clean. I need to tell you, but I am so terrified to lose you.

This curse – this curse of being in love with a stranger – when I know who you are and I share a secret friendship with you that seems to be as important to you as it is to me. You seem to be happier than before we started sharing messages. I am struggling – I am in sublime joy because everything I know about you makes me love you more, yet I am so upset because I know too much about you that you did not share with me. You don’t even know that I am your fellow passenger several times a week.

I am trapped – trapped in a love that can never be. I don’t want to lose our friendship. I don’t want to break your heart. But now I a terrified that you will be angry when I tell you what an idiot I have been.

Dear Fellow Passenger….I love you…and if it helps in anyway….Anne Onimous is really Joanna – how I wish I could tell you that.

27 replies on “Dear Fellow Passenger…”

I read your story and I had so many mixed feelings Jenna.
It was like a romantic tragedy in some ways, but at the same time I wanted to defend the woman in your story. You can never be too careful about men these days (and vice versa). Most of my friends would agree that it is the normal now to do an internet search on someone you meet to see if there are any signs they might not be the charmer they appear to be on the front of things.
I have met lads and then when I saw their Facebook page or Twitter account I saw them posting comments that were nasty – sometimes racist, sometimes they were just being complete knobs. If it is in the public domain, they have to recognise that anyone might see that and make a judgment call on whether they want to be a friend to them or whether they want to hire them for a job etc.
Doing a search on someone is not a crime. Stalking them is. The girl in your story sounds confused and her conscience beat her because she knows following him to work was wrong. Now she does not know what to do. She wants to come clean, but she does not know how. She means no harm, in fact she has fallen in love with the guy. Maybe he feels the same. But I guess her only choice is to tell him that she made a terrible mistake and now she needs to put the ball in his court. Is he creeped out by what she did? If it makes him feel angry, then he has to decide if it’s something he can forgive so they can have a future friendship or if he would feel better ending the relationship? It would be awkward if they catch the same bus regularly.
The more I think about your story – the more I don’t know what she should do. She wants to do the honest thing, but she is so afraid of the consequences I think.
Are you going to do a second part to this story? I am wondering what kind of person the man is. Can he overlook her mistake? Or will he be mad at her? I want to believe there will be a happy ending, but I feel nervous for her.

Liked by 2 people

Very imaginative! Guy and Annie. Cute! And here’s the twist. He already knows about her, too, and followed her to work one day. But that just makes the story even creepier, so I like your idea better. 🙄…. 😉

Like

🙂 …you know Dave, I had an idea in my head at first that ended kind of romantically – and the odd thing is this…I realized I had written a fictional story that was wrong. In my original version, she not only follows him to work, but then another day she goes in as an interested customer and he becomes her financial advisor and over time she tries to flirt with him, but he tells her there is someone else and tells her he has a secret friendship with a woman he has never met.

I wrote it and then I realized that the female character was really losing the plot. So I deleted the second half and instead developed this idea that she followed him to work, realized it was a mistake, and now she feels trapped.

She is a good girl, the fact her conscience is beating her is telling her she has already gone too far. But now she feels incredibly awkward about it. What does she do?

Liked by 1 person

Yes, this story that you posted works much better. Now what should she do, you ask? From a guy’s POV, here it is. Stop being so shy and approach him on the bus. He has no chance to approach her because he knows nothing about her, but I believe he would if he knew her. He’d take the step. Anyway, wouldn’t he be suspicious that it’s “somebody” on the bus since that is where he originally woke up with a note in his pocket? I suppose he could’ve found the note later in the day, but then he might assume it’s Shirley in the other department that flirts with him sometimes at coffee break. He approaches her and whoopsie, it’s not her! He’s embarrassed, frustrated… This brings us back to the bus. She can start a text and do a “look at the woman sitting to your right” kind of thing and it’s her. And he’s shocked but pleasantly surprised.

Like

That’s true….I forgot that he might already have realized it was someone on his bus journey.

I started off with the movie “You’ve Got Mail” as my inspiration. When you think about it Joe Fox is in a terrible position once he discovers that his secret friend is actually Kathleen Kelly. All the time they spend together with him knowing who his secret friend is, and her not knowing – amazingly in the movie it comes across as incredibly romantic – and yet when you think about it, it could be creepy.

I used to see a guy on the bus – years ago – who caught my eye. He was kinda good looking, but what I noticed was he would get on the bus with a burger or pizza, and he would always ring a friend. I am sure I was not the only passenger listening to his conversation. He would tell whoever he was talking to all about his day at work and talk about all sorts of personal stuff, how much his credit card bill had been etc – it fascinated me that he was sharing so much with strangers who shared the same bus route as he did everyday.

Liked by 1 person

That’s funny. I haven’t seen You’ve Got Mail in a while, but I remember it, yeah. Good inspiration for this. Two people can really hit it off by correspondence if they click. So…. yeah, she should approach him because she already knows from her texts that he is not superficial and would probably accept her no matter what she looked like. But was she really attracted enough to him to give this guy her number after seeing him drool on the window and snore? 🤣

Like

lol – maybe it makes him more lovable that she has seen him at his worse snoring and drooling.

I don’t think it is about looks though Dave – I think it is about trust. She is fine with him telling her that he is a builder and not a financial advisor – she told him she a hair dresser and not a paralegal. She understands that for security they have allowed themselves to enjoy a friendship within a bubble of pretence. She can understands that they were both being cautious because that’s what strangers ought to do to be safe perhaps. But now she is confronted with a situation – in being honest, he might lose trust for her. He might view her mistake as an invasion he cannot overlook.

I don’t know how to end this story.

Liked by 1 person

Maybe it’s better left open-ended then? The reader is left with wondering if he will accept that mistake and forgive her, or not. And isn’t that the point of the story? If you want an HEA, he’d have to forgive her or throw a twist that he also knows about her but without making the story about two stalkers in love.

Like

lol – two stalkers in love sounds way too complex for me to tackle.
I think….I think he would be angry once she confesses to him. I think he will put an end to their friendship. I think she will feel terrible and maybe even change her job or take a different route to work because she is scared of seeing him. But I think he will miss her. I think he will realize just how important she has become to him. I think in time, he will have second thoughts and will try to find her again. Maybe that will become the story, his search for the woman he told he never wanted to hear from again.

Liked by 1 person

I find it hard to write from a male POV though….especially when it comes to emotions perhaps. It’s a plot for me and a co-writer – I could write the woman’s side of things, I need a male writer to take over the rest.

Liked by 1 person

OK – so I guess the question is how would she feel if a guy had followed her to find out where she worked?
But I can tell she has already figured out this is not ok and is now going crazy trying to work out what the right thing to do is. It would be interesting to see a Part Two Pinkette.

Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s