Saturday, November 17, 2007

Trenchcoat Guy

I don't know who this man is. He's about eight feet tall, and he never talks (at least, not to me). He never takes off his sunglasses. He never stops grinning. I see him fairly frequently while traveling, especially on the floating cities and the Train of the Railway Regions. He spends quite a lot of time on the Train. It's a bit odd how often I see him, in fact; we just happen to be in the same place, coincidentally, more often than should really be possible. Several other travelers I've met have said the same thing. We actually have a theory that there isn't just one Trenchcoat Guy, but several - a group of identical septuplets, maybe. Still, we've never quite been able to prove that we've seen him in different places at the same time.

It's no good asking him. We've tried. He just grins at us.

Last year, I asked him if I could draw his picture. He didn't say anything, of course, but he grinned (well, kept grinning) and posed like this, which I took as a "yes." He stood perfectly still while I sketched him. When I finished, he took his enormous suitcase off the luggage rack (he keeps his spare trench coats in it) and got off at the next stop, the Flange Mountain Aviation Supply and Ice Cream Parlor. I didn't see him again for a month.

I'm looking forward to seeing him again if I make it to the Railway Regions this year. He's as much a part of the Train by now as the immaculate striped Conductor.

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