Crowds scattered across the platforms like ants before rain when the unexpected flood at King’s Cross threw down its thick blue shadow. Thousands of liters at once, it came without lead up or warning, a titanic blue smear streaking into sudden existence in a rare, cloudless, October sky.
Hurtling down like a fist from miles above, when it finally hit, the building shook, high panes shattering out of shrieking sockets with a thousand tinkling pops. Glittering like teeth in a foaming, navy maw, they flickered in the twisting, rainbow hues of refracted fluorescents before winking out in the water themselves. Screaming as it came, terrified train goers threw their arms high, shoving each other out of the way in their frenzy to escape.
Slamming down hard, the water took the first of them with considerable force. Sweeping them up like opened fingers, they were swallowed in an instant, forward momentum spinning them deep into the warm water before popping them up for air.
Terrified as they tumbled through an ocean of glassy, razor-edged fish, as they managed to slip by the shards unharmed again and again, felt the warm water tug and play with their hair, their shoes, their fingers, they were also the first to start laughing when they emerged, water wiping them clean with a magnitude and finality none of them had ever imagined.
The next were taken more gently, legs knocking out from under them to land them in waist high waters. Falling beneath the surging waves to lose their paperwork, their work heels, their mobiles, as the water washed them clean, they started laughing too.
The third group managed to hold their ground longer, only slipping a little as the water tugged at their shoes. Safe against pillars and gate posts, as their fellow train-goers popped up smiling, weren’t electrocuted or drowned, they left their islands to slog through and help, to rescue those who no longer had the need. Wading through the warmth to their fellows, it took them a little longer, though they too at length found their way. Feeling the first splashes of a laughing tourist, the warm splatter on their freshly starched clothes, it wasn’t long before even the hardest of them was splashing too, rolling back in the steadying waves to get clean with arms spread wide.
As the water found its level, so did the rest of the people. Lying back, soaking wet, they stared up through twisted panes to the glorious sun-swept sky, some all on their own, others in pairs or clusters. Letting it pour into their hearts, resting at last, the train goers lay together for a time that went beyond understanding, finally at peace.
Then, rising with a new source, they left, each in their own timing and purpose and soaked to the bone.