Still thinking about the homeless woman, your eye catches a man sitting on the platform of the next stop. Hunched over, he's wearing a military-issued camouflage jacket. A wool cap with loose change sits in front of him. His face is long and punctuated by a scraggly brown beard. The beard curls at the end like a question mark. It's a question that appears constantly on his lips.
Any change? Can you help?
The sound of two crowds colliding bursts from the sliding doors. Yet you remain transfixed on the man. Is he a veteran? How did he get to this point? Does he have any family? Friends? You are staring so intently at him through the window that you don't notice a trio of men stalking up to him.
The color drains from the man's face. He knows these men. The first tries to snatch the wool cap full of change, but the man drops his body down on the cap like a trap. The second member of the group kicks the man in the chest. You leap to your feet. The door exiting the car has already closed.
The three are now on top of the defenseless man. They are raining down kicks and punches. Their eyes flash with malice. You keep hoping that someone, that anyone will intervene. But people keep shuffling by the violence without seeming to notice or care.
The man's back is on the ground. He tries to shield his face to no avail. You notice a growing stream of crimson running down his cheek. The train begins to pull away from the station. The leader of the group swipes the wool cap of money off the ground. He delivers one final blow to the crown of the man's hand. Your final glimpse of the shrinking scene is three men giving a mocking salute to their victim crumpled on the ground.
Then you see the blur. Then the darkness.