A small segment from an upcoming comic I'm working on. Just an writing exercise to keep me going.
It’s not like rain was a rare thing for the capital Adrera. The city is just so dense that you could get nearly anywhere without going outside. There were so many flying vehicles soaring the skies that rain drops seldom hit the ground. I could hear it though, pounding the window like someone tossed a bag of seeds against the glass. I was working late tonight... I had a chemistry project to get done and the school’s laboratories were the best place to do it. Still… most of the staff was gone. The janitors were roaming the hallways… most of the lights were turned off. The laboratory lights had automatically dimmed, a feature the sensors triggered when there was no movement detected. That’s how still I was at my computer, putting in calculation after calculation.
I had to run simulations of course, it was the only way I could be sure things worked… though I occasionally remembered lights being on recently. I hadn’t moved… but Selah was there with me, keeping herself occupied with whatever tool, or gadget she could touch. I had to stop her from burning herself with plasma torches and laser cutters a few times, but I was able to keep her occupied with the lab creatures the school had been growing. The artificial rodents were enough to distract my large friend but the lights hadn’t turned on for some time. I looked up to find Selah sitting at the desk, sleeping on her arms.
For a moment, I watched as she quietly slept, drooling a little from the corner of her mouth. I always thought she’d be a big snore machine but here she was, this giantess sleeping like a baby. She decided to stay after school with me, refusing to leave me alone despite that I asked to be. Not sure what she sees in me… but she called me her friend, and that---well, I haven’t been called that in a long time. I looked back down to my computer… I’d be here a few more hours. With a sigh, I saved my progress and shut down everything. I’ve already been here five hours passed closing. I couldn’t have asked anything more of Selah tonight. My work could wait.
I walked over to Selah, nudging her awake and whispering that it was time to go. Still half-asleep she stood up from her desk and nodded before heading out. We took an elevator to the ground level. Public transportation was closed until morning and the only way back home was by walking. I’d almost forgotten about the rain until now. It was just white noise before. I wasn’t in the mood to get wet… but it was a long walk home and the most I had was my hoodie. I put my hands in my pocket and clenched my arms tight at my sides before taking a step forward. Before I could move Selah held me back by the shoulder. I looked to her. She held an umbrella handle out to me, smiling in offering.
Selfishly I took the umbrella, opened it and went on a few steps before realising I left her with nothing. We couldn’t share the umbrella, she was too tall. I would have still been showered on by stray drops if I held it that high. I looked to her again, and she only returned with a smile before looking ahead at the walkways. She wanted me to have it and wouldn’t take it back even if I asked her to.
Who was this woman? And who was I to deserve this little gesture of kindness? I stared forward as the thunderstorm drenched the city and its skyline of angles and edges. It was strange… all I could hear was the rain around me.. and the drops pelting my umbrella. But the city itself was muted. There was no buzz of flying transports, the audible advertisements, the chatter of people. The capital city was… silent. It was just bright and beautiful lights. I looked to Selah again, watching the sparkle of the city reflect in her eyes that stared ever-forward lost in her own thoughts as a smirk was fixed on her lips. Neither her or I said anything the entire time we walked. I could see her skin raised with goosebumps as the chilly air got to her. I watched as her shirt clung to her skin, her sleeves becoming transparent as the cloth soaked through. Here I was, dry as a bone, warm even. It was at that moment I felt something. I wasn’t completely sure but I think it’s what friendship was supposed to feel like. And if it was… I didn’t even want to leave. I’d like to remain here, listening to the rain as the watery diamonds drowned the city into silence… and I had someone beside me who I could call friend.