She glanced up from her phone, the game of Candy Crush staring up and her from the screen expectantly as she absentmindedly watched the crowd of people file into her subway coach at Woodbine station. While an indie rock band serenaded her through the headphones gently hugging her head, she let her gaze rest briefly on each new entry: a woman shoving her stroller over the crack between the subway floor and platform, the baby inside sleeping through the jostling as she navigated him down the aisle to the end seats; an old couple shuffling through the doors and taking the last two seats across from her; and finally, a man ducking into the closing doors just as the chiming signal went off.
His eyes moved across the now-full rush hour train scanning for an empty seat, and finally fell on the woman with the phone. As if on cue, the two smiled at each other. When he broke eye contact, he slouched against the train door, taking out his own phone and sliding two earbuds in. She stared down at her black boots, debating whether to make eye contact with him once again. A moment went by. Do it. She glanced up, caught his eye, and found that he was smiling at her. At this realization, her own face broke into a smile, and pulled her grey wool coat closer around her shoulders. With each stop, more and more people flooded into the train, and he slowly shuffled closer and closer to her. Now’s my chance, she thought. At nearly thirty-five years old, she had been divorced for two years and hadn’t ventured to go on a date since. While she fumbled through her purse to pull out her wallet, more and more people piled into the tight space. She watched desperately as the tall man fell further and further away from her. She tugged at the cards jammed in the slots of her brand new wallet, the stiff red leather refusing to offer any give while she struggled to slide them out.
Finally, she extracted a single business card, her name and number printed boldly across the center of the card stock. With the card in hand, she reached out to… no one. Through the window, she seems him exiting onto the platform, casting one last smile her way as the train pulls away and disappears into darkness.