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West Coast, Canada, 2015

West Coast, Canada, 2015


They both laughed and ran, chasing each other down the long and vacant railway line.

They knew not to chase the trains. They knew that it was difficult to tell when one might emerge behind them too fast for them to move.

They've been told, often, the story of the man in the village who walks with a limp. A prosthetic limb to replace the one that was trapped under the train as it squealed to a stop, the driver trying to brake when he saw the young man with his foot stuck in the tracks.

I was lucky, he said. I'm only missing my leg. My friend died, soon after, playing catch with his friend and his school bag across the line.

They did hear the train. The girl pulled the boy by his backpack away from the track far enough yet close enough for them both to feel the air whirl around their faces and the hard mechanical noise pierce their ears. They held their hands up to their ears and squeezed their eyes shut. When the train was gone the girl took the boy's hand.

We shouldn't be here, she said and led him back into the forest.

Feeling brave? Want to share your story? In the words of one Disney princess, Let it go, in the comments below.