Picture by Redvers: Turning siding at end of Amersham station
Mud scatters behind them as they run through the doors and gasp for breath, but the train sits in the station for a minute and a half before it leaves. The carriage is almost empty.
Alice is sitting on a newspaper; she pulls it out, crumpled, ink already rubbing off on her hands. It’s folded open to the fashion pages: “girdles are back,” she announces as she throws it over onto an empty seat.
“Sounds good,” David says. “They’re the ones with stockings, right?”
“You’re thinking of garters. Girdles are… you know,” and she nods toward the paper, “if someone decided corsets were too sexy.”
David leans over and picks the paper up. “They’re a prerequisite for this season’s waist-centric fashions?” he reads.
Alice shrugs. “Waists are big this year.”
The girdles are rated out of ten for shaping and comfort. The two numbers seem to be directly opposed. “Call me mad,” David says, “but I tend to buy clothes to fit my shape, instead of changing my shape to fit the clothes.”
Alice leans back as far as the seat design allows, and looks him up and down. “You’re a man,” she says.
“Yeah,” he says. “Also: single, heterosexual, good at cooking, decently paid, quite keen on children, tall and with no facial hair. I don’t even play video games. According to this sort of thing,” and he shakes the paper, “I’m the demographic you lot are supposed to be trying to appeal to. I’m pretty sure wrapping yourselves in layers of flesh-coloured elastic is almost exactly the wrong way to go about it.”
Alice grins, and takes the paper back. “You say that,” she says, “and you get to sound noble and pretend you like women the way they are, but shoes with heels are basically the same thing. Arse out, tits up, lower apparent BMI, hurts your back a bit if you keep it up too long.”
“I don’t like high heels either,” David says.
Alice pffts. “What’re your women supposed to wear their garters with, then? Hiking boots?”
David blushes, and tries very hard not to look at her feet.