Car 1

Miss Marie Breatnach

Outward appearance

Pale, about 22, black hair pulled behind her ears. A sprinkling of spots on her chin. Everything she wears is blue, like a school uniform. She stares at herself in small hand mirror.

Inside information

Marie is from Northern Ireland and lives with her brother and his wife. She has a steel plate in her head. She was hit by a van when she was 12, cycling in a country lane.

She starts work today in the pay department of Railtrack, Waterloo Station. She forgot until reminded by her brother.

What she is doing or thinking

Marie has headaches and gets confused. She has a headache now. That means she's nervous. And she was such a brave child. She was cycling much faster than her friend Fee, and didn't see the van because she was looking back over her shoulder. She won the race.

She looks at her chin in the mirror and thinks: you'd never believe I used to have a beautiful complexion. Marie is unsure if she is pretty. She would really like to be told one way or the other. The face in the mirror bears so little resemblance to the one she remembers.

She is sure they will not mind her being late in the new job. She will explain that she forgot today was the first day. Then she'll ask for a nice cup of tea.

The doors open and close. Through the window, the sign says Lambeth North. How many more stops to Waterloo? Marie gets out her map as the train gathers speed toward Elephant and Castle.

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