Dana Brooks decided to sit in the railroad station for a while and watch the people. Her bus out of Syracuse left at a little after two o’clock and it was only a few minutes past one. Then, too, it seemed impossible to get a taxi right now. Perhaps a bit later it would be easier. Anyway, it was fun watching people — especially in railroad stations. She liked to imagine their possible destination — their business and even their families. In Sedgewick she knew everyone and everyone knew her. There were no mysteries and no strangers. If a stranger did happen to appear he didn’t remain one long.
Now right over there was an interesting pair — evidently mother and daughter. The older woman was nervous and unsure while the girl — Dana was certain she was no older than she was herself — looked as if she held the world by the tail. From time to time she urged her mother to relax; but it was evident her advice fell on deaf ears. And a group of college students — boys and girls having a wonderful time just being together. Their laughter brought a smile to more than one face. She wondered about the stout young woman in a much too tight fur jacket trying unsuccessfully to make a small boy quiet down. But the lively youngster ran about inspecting everything and everyone.
A train was called and porters, laden with luggage, hurried through the gates while crowds surged after. The big station began to appear quite empty and Dana considered the possibility of obtaining a cab. Suddenly a tall young man carrying an important-looking brief case dashed through a street door followed by a porter with his bags. He swerved to avoid the stout young woman and immediately sent the small boy sprawling. A howl rent the air and Dana gasped and glared at the hurrying traveler who stopped long enough to yank the lad to his feet while at the same time his hand went into his pocket and came out full of jingling coins which he pressed into the crying youngster’s hands. The noise stopped as if by magic and the young man continued on his way. His amused and very blue eyes met Dana’s indignant brown ones and as he passed he said cynically:
“Don’t worry, sister. He’s all right. Money has miraculous power — to heal the hurts of this world.” He waved in the general direction of the casualty and raced after his vanishing porter.
by Lucy Agnes Hancock (1955)