She could feel their eyes burning into her back as the great clamor faded into silence.
Her first thought was how cold the metal bar still felt against her burning hot skin. Knelt over as she was, she could only see the bar as it stretched off into the distance, easily miles before it turned to the left and out of her sight. The heat filling her cheeks had long since flushed them red, but was no match for such a long piece of iron.
Her second thought was how strong the wind which had just blown against her back had been. She had barely noticed it while it rushed over her, perhaps her mind had been elsewhere (or at least preoccupied with other things; it most certainly still rested between her pink-stained ears)… But with it gone, she was grossly aware of just how hot the mid day sun could be on her shoulders and back.
Her third thought: Time to get up.
Her hands slowly but firmly grasped the bar at her cheek, and with one determined motion she pushed herself up to her knees. In the corner of her eye, she caught sight of it: A monstrously large beast of pure iron, smoke still billowing out of its top even from its now-halted position. And for that moment, gazing upon it was all that mattered. Together, they’d shared something irrevocably special, something that might have changed it, and could easily have changed her forever. The momentously monumental moment washed over both of them, in her mind…
And then the others began to speak.
Those who looked more like her, those who were smaller, softer, hairier, and much more vocal. Those who weren’t tied to a line of metal and wood, but chose where to go as they pleased, even if they often squandered that freedom. Those who would never in their wildest fancies attempt what she had just done, regardless of the debt they had or the moments they’d share with anything.
The first among them climbed down from the back of that great iron creature, which was now helpless to stop them. They began their blathering long before she had a hope of understanding them, but she rose to her feet anyway. To her right, about five minutes away, she noticed more of them hopping the old, wooden fence. A slight smile sprouted under her face: She’d had to do the same about half an hour ago, just to get here.
There’ll be no moments for any of You, she thought, as she pruned that smile before it reached her lips.. Should have been here earlier.
“What in the hells do you think You are doing!?” A rough, soot filled voice brought her back to those closer by. “Do You even know You could have died there!?” He was angry, that much was certain, but why? She was unharmed, his charge was unharmed, there were no casualties today. “I almost ran You over!” He turns to the smaller one at his side. “We were going 99, with 16 tons of freight behind us. If You hadn’t’a spotted her when You did, we’d all be up shit’s creek with this one… Especially this one!”
The shorter one’s voice spoke with less soot, and much more gravel. “Lady, We’ve put in a call to the authorities. Do You have any reason we shouldn’t lock You up right now?”
She, however, did not speak. She pointed to her cheeks, and looked at the ground in silence. Soon, the constabulary arrived, who rephrased the short one’s question, asking for a repeat performance. She happily complied, and waited for them to finish questioning the others.
She was then handcuffed, carted around a bit, and put in a cell in the local jail until they could figure out what to do with her.