Eliza did not normally pick up men on the subway.
It had happened only once before, several months earlier, when a tall, brown-skinned, mustachioed man had spotted her reading the Book of Mormon. Scooting next to her across an empty seat, he’d flashed his well-worn copy of the Koran like a badge signifying his equal rank.
“We have much in common, you and I,” he began in almost a whisper, as if he didn’t want any Christian or Jewish infidels to overhear. “Your Joseph Smith was an American Muhammad.”
Five stops later, brimming with secret missionary hopes, Eliza had agreed to continue the discussion at a Dunkin Donuts outside the station. However, when the man brought up his polygamous grandfather back in Tunisia, his eyes grew too shiny and his moustache took on a lascivious quirk. When she stood to leave, he slapped his hand on the table and scowled.
The Muslim notwithstanding, Eliza had recently been making eye contact with another man on the subway, a goateed fellow in his mid-thirties who watched her with an amused-looking expression, as if mentally rehearsing a joke just for her.