Updated: Jan 27, 2019

The dazzling light was getting through the window in my compartment. I could bearly keep my eyes open; the heat, the wriggling of the train running on the steel rails, some whispered words heard from time to time, gave me a mood of both euphoric consciousness and annoying lack of occupation. I was sitting by the window yet my glance did not fall upon the picture that was unfolding beyond it, so fast that if I looked thither I could scarcely distinguish some trees scattered on a deserted field and the blue sky. It was an image that was not worth my attention.

In the compartment, there were three persons traveling along with me: an old man and an old woman, probably husband and wife, and a young gentleman sitting next to me. He was reading a book and was so absorbed in it that I could observe him closely without being noticed: fine hands hiding great strength despite the gentleness and grace in holding the book, the chest a bit suntanned in contrast with the white shirt which had two buttons undone, the face that made a more astonishing impression. Under the mutinous black hair, there was the profile of a serene forehead that buried two blue eyes. There was no feature of his countenance expressing more faithfully the felicity or the sorrow of his soul than his smile. There was something ineffable in it that enchanted me so much that I should have dreaded its power, or so I thought then because during the ten minutes in which I kept looking at his face, I didn’t see him smile once.

Then, it occurred to me that I knew the charming gentleman but where from, I didn’t dare ask myself. I was just aware of a strange feeling of déjà-vu.

Suddenly, some noises on the corridor awakened me from the reverie: the train carried few people and luggage and yet they were thronging for a seat. I turned my head and avoided another look at the gentleman fearing I would drown myself again in that exulting mood. I diverted my glance to the window and the reflection of an old woman stared back at me.

Near her, stood the ghost of her late husband, as she remembered him when they had met, and beyond the looking glass, the dazzling light of the sun had turned into reddish sparkles and was now flooding a violet sky with no trace of a cloud: it was the sunset.

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