After checking in with his Dad, who was buried in architectural designs for his work with the city, he agreed to let Ethan spend the night out, even though he had school the next day. Reminding him not to get wrapped up in anything over his head, his father hugged him, said good night, and Ethan went on his way.
He kept his look casual with a fitted black t-shirt and a pair of cargo khakis that suited his warm brown skin. He didn’t have any clothing with glow software installed, so his outfit was fairly normal. Las probably had a shirt with vibrant and intricate designs that would make a beacon of light for everyone to know exactly where the birthday boy could be found - at least Ethan hoped. He didn’t really want to see anyone from football, but if he got separated from Las, it would be nice to be able to find him quickly.
There’s probably going to be plenty of people with glow on their clothes, though.
Ethan was sitting on the train on his way downtown to the club. He dropped his head in his hands and let out a long exhale.
I don’t wanna go…
But it was too late. He promised and he didn’t want to let his only real friend left be disappointed in him.
Lifting his head back up, Ethan’s eyes immediately began to burn. The lights on the train were brighter than before, and he wondered if they were just adjusting from momentary darkness. While blinking it off, his eyes bounced between two people in the train car with him.
One blonde woman with a stunning red dress that looked tailored for her pale skin, her legs crossed and bobbing to a tune likely playing her in wing. Her hair was pulled back but still looked wild, as if she had to desperately fight to pin down all her waves and still could barely contain them. She kept her eyes closed and let the music carry her elsewhere. She was radiant, and he had no choice but to turn his eyes away. Was her glow activated? Did she not notice?
The other person startled Ethan when she came into focus. She seemed to be looking at him dead on. Aside from seeing a dull violet glow emanating from her, he quickly averted his gaze so as not to be caught staring. He observed the city moving below them, lights flickering past and the gentle shimmer of the train car’s colorful fire moving them along. The tracks were situated high above the life operating below, and he made it a point to try and find anything to focus on so as not to look in her direction again. She was staring; he could feel it. Why was everything so bright?
Ethan began to look to his lap when he noticed the video running on the back of the seat in front of him. Advertisements would cycle through while you ride the train, and most people ignored them, himself included. Right then the bright smile of a girl dressed as a nurse was a perfect distraction.
“...rated the best clinic in the Manhattan area. Services include diagnostics and treatment up to and including extraction therapy using the latest technology approved by the Tellere Una’s Health Division. Our technicians are trained to serve your individual needs and we can promise you’re comfortable from start to extraction. If you or someone you love is experiencing abnormal headaches, sensory overload, false memories, frequent nightmares, or unusual changes to their body or behavior, there’s still time to get help. So what are you waiting for? Call to schedule your appointment or visit our site - “
Entity clinics. Ethan rubbed his forehead to try and soothe the pain. It was starting to feel like everywhere he looked, something about Entities was coming up. Maybe he was just more aware, but it wasn’t worth thinking about. Avoid the infected. That was the key principle in regards to Entities.
Hearing the call for Penn Station was probably the best sound the train could have offered to him. He quickly hopped to his feet and rushed the door, feeling a chill down his spine but a sweat on his brow as he waited for it to slide open. He glanced toward the windows to catch her reflection and she was still sitting there, and while it wasn’t a clear view, she didn’t seem to be staring at him anymore. He looked back to the door with a sigh. Anxiety got the best of him, he decided. It was just his imaginati -
His entire body jolted when he realized it wasn’t the staring girl behind him but the blonde who suddenly emerged with his reflection. He looked back at her but she seemed to be ignoring him, waiting for the door to open as well. Once it finally released the locks, she pushed past him and left the train first. Ethan didn’t have time to find it rude - he was too busy admiring how assertive she was. Her stride, her attitude - it didn’t feel like she was trying to offend anyone. She just carried herself with command and that was amazing.
Then he got off the train and grumbled a little. Okay, it was a little rude. There was only two of them at the door. She couldn’t wait a second?
That’s the kind of night it’s gonna be, isn’t it? … Wait.
Watching her leave, his shoulders sank. Her glow wasn’t on. So it was the train lights… He rubbed his eyes upon reflection and began to move. He had a birthday gathering to get to.