There was a stilness in the air that only comes with late hours and quiet suburbs. Wrapped in her thick grey coat, Melbourne Train Girl walked up the hill toward the roundabout where she had plans to meet her Almost Best Friend at midnight. The mist of gauzy drizzle that hung in the air thickened as she walked, and she pulled her hood over her head and buttoned her coat to the top.
She remembered the day she had bought that coat. The Late Boy had given her an incredulous look as she bounded up to him, showing off her new purchase.
"You look like an eskimo!" he had said, laughing and shaking his head.
This has always been one of Melbourne Train Girl's favourite coats.
Passing one house she caught a faint hint of cigar smoke on the breeze. At another a laugh rose up to bubble in the air before bursting back into silience once again. As she neared the roundabout her Almost Best Friend appeared over the hill and waved. He pulled his own hood up and mocked Melbourne Train Girl's silly skipping strides.
They walked in the dark and the drizzle, their words and laughter cutting through the midnight stillness. After half an hour or so they wandered through a metal gate and into Melbourne Train Girl's old primary school. The wooden playground that used to stand out the back has long since been replaced by plastic, but the buildings are still the same. Melbourne Train Girl ran her hand along the curved stone wall, and let the long forgotten memories of lining up two by two and hand in hand when the bell sounded surface once again in her mind.
The wooden logs behind the portable were still in the same spot. If they weren't so slicked and slippery with rain she would have walked along them.
A sound like hasty footsteps stopped Melbourne Train Girl mid sentence, and she turned her eyes distractedly to the right.
"I think that was just rain," her Almost Best Friend said, but they both began to walk again. Just in case.
They sat at the side of the basketball court on a log that was only slightly damp until he said "do you think it is kind of creepy here?" Looking around at the deserted buildings with their big empty eyes as windows Melbourne Train Girl agreed, and they continued to walk.
Melbourne Train Girl and her Almost Best Friend live very close. In their suburb there is nothing to do except to walk. The supermarket had closed some hours ago, and there were no more trams to take them up the road to the one that stayed open all night. So they wandered, in the dark and the rain, laughing and talking of all manner of things until they both got too cold and decided to call it a night.
He walked Melbourne Train Girl back to her house (for safety of course - his just as much as her own), and then Melbourne Train Girl drove him the three minutes back up to his house. She thinks she managed to forget about thinking of the Short Boy for the whole evening. She is very grateful for that night of clarity.