Story Spark - Hund, Katze, Maus
Story Spark - Dog, Cat, Mouse (German title: “Hund, Katze, Maus“)



A commuter disgusted at having to share life with the others in the underground and in the train, describes the people around them with nasty unflattering adjectives, takes finally, out of sheer boredom, to writing comments in the condensation on the window in answer to the drawings that they find there. This becomes a daily habit. And of course the commuter is surprised one day to receive a reply to one of their messages, from another passenger.

Upon the glass of the same window, day for day, a dialogue ensues between the two. Sometimes the conversation takes the form of drawings: cats, mice, seagulls � sometimes the form of words, rarely more than a single one. Shortly before their holiday the commuter draws an island with a palm tree. The next day they receive the answer �have fun, catch you later,� which they are touched by.

Their return from holiday is accompanied by a change in the tone of the correspondence. After offering the simple message �hello� to the unknown person, the reply comes, �I missed you.� The commuter is touched again and asks the person, who they are.

When no answer comes for a longer period of time, the old feelings of disgust return. Day for day the commuter writes messages on the window. Not even a return to the earlier, less obliging mentions of objects like clouds, fish, cushions helps to obtain an answer. Finally the commuter resorts to provocative means: �man or woman?�, �How old?�, �Where are you going to?� When the answer finally comes, it is casual: �let's have a game.� On the window is drawn a noughts-and-crosses board. The commuter, despite an inborn hatred for games, accepts the challenge as the only chance of contact. The games continue over a number of weeks, but its limitations lead finally to boredom.

One day the board is gone, instead the words, �I'm afraid� are written on the window

The commuter replies, �I'm afraid too.�

This is followed on another day by a single word: �help,� the last message that the commuter receives.

The next day the carriage in which they usually travel is locked. This is not unusual in itself, but the window at which the condensation conversations were usually held is now broken, cracks spreading in a spider web form, as if hit by a heavy object, or a person, thinks the commuter.

All attempts to find out to the other person was, in newspapers, are unsuccessful. The story ends with the commuter's decision not to use public transport any more. They buy a car. A new one. �I don't want a car with any history.�

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