“Trains, like time and tide, stop for no one.” ~Jules Verne

‘We’re on our way to Yonkers to see the Hudson River Museum. Prepare for the most wonderful surprise soon, sweetheart! We love you! Grandma and Grandpa Grant.’

Ashley held the postcard, the first of many depicting Grand Central Station. This was the card that kept his hope alive, which helped feed a lie. This was the card that brightened his day until that distressing night. And yet…

‘We’re on our way to Yonkers.’ That was one of the first destinations Grandma and Grandpa Emery brought up, to finish the US collection. That dream washed away with so many other goals.

He took the Jules Verne classic off the shelf. This was the story that started it all, the beginning of so many travels, both real and imagined. It was part of the ‘Most Treasured’ that he had placed in the suitcase before-. It was the first to perish in the bonfire, the last to be replaced.

Ashley smiled, recalling the day Professor Wilder gifted it to him. The note inside read: ‘There is nothing on this earth more to be prized than true friendship. ~Thomas Aquinas. Maybe together, maybe solo – may you go out to see the world!’

He placed the postcard inside the book, along with the note. ‘Past’ and ‘Future’ together for the ideal present.