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Now that she could actually see the magnificent coastal city approaching, the anticipation was almost too much. To pass the time while the great ship steadily pushed its way toward its destination, the little girl thought it wise to turn her attention to the words in her book. Reading might make it easier. Besides, perhaps she would find words that would be perfect to have fresh in her heart when she stepped off the boat and onto dry land once again. And if not perfect words, suitable ones.

She sat comfortably in a deck chair. The breeze was cool, but the air was warm and the sun was shining. Very pleasant indeed. For a few moments, instead of reading, she thought back to the days before she found this book; her book. She looked back out over the open sea and allowed many formerly painful memories to float past her consciousness.

No longer were these memories painful. In fact, some of them elicited a smile rather than a tear, while others barely registered anything. They were just events.

Turning the pages of the book, looking for something that might spark an idea or some inspiration, the girl suddenly noticed that something about her hands was different – so much so that she was a little alarmed. With a somewhat concerned expression, bringing her hands closer to her face for a better look, she quietly said to herself, “These… these are not my hands.”

To be continued…

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