Dancing in the Rain

Steven pulls his collar higher around his neck and tries to hide his smile sheepishly. A couple of men huddle underneath a nearby awning, passing a cigarette around. As Steven passes, oblivious in the pouring rain, one of them swings his head toward Steven and takes one last drag on the cigarette before throwing it to the ground.

“Hey dog, slow up a second.”

When Steven continues walking, the man jogs up behind him and places his hand on Steven’s shoulder. Steven reacts as if he has been slapped, turning around suddenly and violently. The man yanks his hands away and laughs, putting his hands up in a sign of surrender.

“Woa there homie, don’t be freakin’ out or nothin’. I just wanted to say how nice of a watch you got yourself.”

Steven smiles at the compliment, but the meaning dawns on him as the others surround him. His head ticks involuntarily to the right and he looks above the heads of the men, mumbling. Steven looks back and continues to smile.

The meaning dawns on the man as he closes in on Steven.

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