She had been here for a very long time. She did not know how long, exactly, for the age of stone is not measured in years or even centuries, but she had seen the world walk by through days and nights since the day she had been given form. She had seen the faces change, and the styles change, and even the modes of transport change, and therefore she knew that time must have passed. She had been whitewashed by thousands of pigeons and cleaned with hundreds of rags, until the cleaners had ceased to care, and therefore she knew that time must have passed. She had had her fingers snapped off and taken as mementos three times, and the third time, no one had bothered to replace them, and therefore she knew that time must have passed.
And she stood. And she watched. Always the same.
This was how it was, and this was how it looked it would always be, until she saw the boy.
He was unremarkable at first glance. Just one of the thousands of faces she saw every day. But, unlike any of the others, he seemed to take an interest to her. He approached her. he climbed up on her pedestal. He looked into her eyes.
"You're beautiful," he said.
Had she had any blood, or any color but grey, she would have blushed. But she didn't. Couldn't. Couldn't do anything except stare back into his eyes, which were green.
What a nice color green was.
Was she still beautiful? She knew she had been designed to be, but now she was missing fingers and covered in pigeon excrement. It had been a very long time since anyone had noticed her, let alone spoken to her. Let alone told her she was beautiful.
She wished she could ask him his name. But she couldn't, and so she didn't.
He came back many times. He grew taller. More handsome. He took a picture of her once. She liked that.
And then he began to come less often. When he came, he came in suits and ties, except for the times that he didn't. He didn't talk to her anymore. He always smiled though.
She lost another finger to an adolescent vandal. It was not replaced.
The next time the boy came--except he wasn't a boy now, but a man--it was winter, and there was a woman with him. He showed her to the woman. The woman said she was ugly and old. The man shrugged.
She felt pain.
The man didn't come again for a long while. When he next came, his hair was grey, and his eyes looked a bit grey too. There was no woman with him.
He reached out and touched her broken hand, running his fingers along her rough stumps.
"Do you have a name?" he asked her.
She didn't think so, but she couldn't have told him if she did.
"Mine's Brian," he told her.
He didn't come back again.