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Under The Ground 11: Knuckle Duster

January 2, 2011

He sits opposite me and looks around bored. He cradles one fat hand in the other and finds the knuckle of his index finger. Loud crack. I wince, jerk involuntarily and suck air into my mouth in sympathetic pain. Then the next one. He stares vaguely into the space beyond my head with an uninvolved, unconcerned look and starts working across the row at the base of his fingers. I quickly calculate another six cracks, eight if the thumbs are pressed into service, and a further eighteen if the remaining joints on both hands get involved. There’s always the possibility of the toes too. Is no-one else affronted by this attack on my senses? Do I have the right to complain? If I do, will he stick a knife between my ribs? Can I mobilise the population of this carriage into armed resistance? Silence. Relief. Then he starts again. It’s my stop.

From → Under The Ground

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