It always is.
Holding that old crutch of hers, she walks slowly. She tries to look miserable too. But that isn’t really hard with those exposed legs of hers. “A cripple has nothing valuable to lose”, her father used to say before burning her.
Her calmly stretched out hand seems to be constantly begging. She avoids to look at the faces. People are easily annoyed. No eye contact she has been told. That is important.
„There is nothing to see”, she tells herself. Although there is something. She knows. She has seen it so many times. It makes her want to puke – right on the shoes of everyone around. That something she refuses to acknowledge. Disgust mixed with pity. What a hateful thing to show her. There is nothing important to see. She won’t bother.
After three seconds of waiting, she turns to the next person. Still begging with her free hand. Repeating a carefully pronounced „danke schön” and a pleading „bitte hilfe”, the best she can. Anna taught her those phrases, in the strange barking language.
The Metro shakes violently, nearly throwing her off balance. A big hand grabs her under her armpit. It pulls her up. She doesn’t dare to move. The grip tightens. It is her guard. A small, reeking man speaking her language, and strong enough to beat her to death. And he is guarding the money, not her.
The only good thing about being a cripple is, that you have nothing of value to lose.