The soup leapt out of his hands, spilling all down the end of the table and splashing onto the little woman who had only sat down moments before. She just stares at the offending mess that had encroached on her space and splattered on her coat. She huffs. She gruffs and frowns and makes short jabbed motions of disdain while the owner of the soup apologizes profusely and runs to get napkins. The friend of the soup owner sits, shifting his eyes from the woman visibly and audibly angry to the crowd his friend submerged into. He didn’t cause this, or is really a part in either of the two’s predicament, but he can’t escape. He knows the soup owner, so he can’t just leave. Yet he knows his words won’t make the woman feel better, and there are no useful actions he can take. So he sits one seat away from the muttering cursing woman, wishing he were almost anywhere but here. He is stuck, watching the aftermath of a train wreck and knowing he had nothing to do with it, that there is nothing he can do to help, and that he is still somehow accountable.


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