There were about 20 people on the train, enough that someone probably didn't have a ticket, and few enough that I should be able to hear the argument that may transpire, the perfect scenario.
The female officer worked her way back from the front of the car, reading tickets from extended arms, "Thank you...Thank you...Thank you" she said quietly. She was checking tickets in the row behind me when it happened. A boy and a girl, both college aged had but one ticket between them.
"I have a round trip ticket, can we just say this is the same as two one way tickets?" He pleaded.
"No", the officer snapped back, "one of you is going to have to get off at the next stop and buy another ticket." She continued to work the train checking for tickets. Disappointed at the lack of an altercation I went back to looking out the window. The ticket shy pair talked quietly for a bit as the train came to the next stop. The girl walked past to the front of the car and went out the door.
I turned to see the boy still sitting in his window seat peering to the front of the car as a middle-aged woman behind me advised him, "She's not gonna have time to buy a ticket and get back on the train." Only then did I really put all the pieces together and I became instantly more intrigued by this couple.
Thinking to myself 'That was awfully naive of them, they must be younger or dumber than I originally thought', the boy replied to the woman, "Oh I know, she's just gonna catch the next train and catch up to me." Younger than I thought, maybe not, dumber than I thought, definitely.
Now I'm fully invested, who were these people? What was their relation? Where were they going? What possible situation made it okay for the guy to leave this girl behind in downtown Baltimore?
The fact that they were both wearing matching blue T-shirts with only the Chevy logo on them now becomes much more important in my thought process. Were they on their way to some kind of volunteer work and were late? Regardless the boy should have gotten off and let the girl go ahead. While my mind is racing for a reasonable explanation the train comes to a stop, I had to get off. When I stood to leave, SO DID THE BOY! The girl got off at the previous stop literally 2 blocks away, where for some reason she was in line to buy a ticket. Why on earth didn't they just both get off and walk. I can not think of an acceptable reason for the young man to ditch his female companion. The best case for him is he was trying to get dumped for some reason. But if that was the case, how was he convinced to where the exact same shirt as her? And she must be pretty firmly under his thumb if she accepted being the one to get off the train so quickly, so I'm not sure he was looking for an exit strategy.
Whatever the explanation was, I will sadly never know, but people will never cease to amaze me.