Grandma Darlene could not imagine who could be so cruel as to pulling such a horrible prank on a poor old woman like her. The call came this morning, just after she woke up. There was no caller ID, so she did not know who it was from, but the man on the other side of the phone told her to come to the park at midnight, said to her that if she did so she would be given a second chance, whatever that meant. She had always thought of herself as a woman who could live without regrets, so she really did not care if she "could be given a second chance." But at the same time, she really could not help but wanted to find out if that phone call was a mere prank or something more. Anyone who dared to make someone as old as her stay up this late must not be forgiven, but this time she was not quite sure who was truly to blame, her curiosity or that mysterious man on the phone.

She had waited all day, knitting scarfs and feeding cats and doing everything she could to pass the time. And she wondered briefly whether or not being old had made time seem slower than usual, and all this wondering had made her oh so weary, and so she went back to knitting her scarf for her grandchildren.

She fell asleep and when she woke up again it was about time to go. She had to sneak out of the house because her son would never let her leave the house without his accompany. The sneaking part was easier than she thought it would be. She drugged her son so he could fall asleep, and that's it. The tough part was, well, she did not even know that there was a park in her town before that phone call. She had not been anywhere outside her house for the past twenty years, which was one of the many reasons why she could be so stupid as to believing that that phone call could be anything more than just a prank call.

Just as she was about to give up, walk back home, and wake her son up and admit to him what an utterly evil yet dumb old woman she was, as if a miracle had befallen on her, she found that all those wandering around had brought her all the way to a park after all. She was not quite sure if that park was the park that the man on the phone wanted her to come to, but well, she trusted Fate enough. If Fate wanted her to find out the truth behind the phone call, it would have brought her to the right park.

"Ooh, an anemone!" She wanted to kneel down and pick that flower, but someone got there first. She pulled out her cane, fully ready to unleash all her old woman rage. That was when she found out that someone was not just anyone, but Mason, her childhood sweetheart, the one that she was supposed to marry but somehow did not.

He stood there in front of her, smiling, his face still as young as it was when she last saw her around, let's say, half a century ago. How could she not be able to tell that it was his voice that she had heard from the phone? And how could she not remember that this was the park that they used to hang out in when they were both young? Although many of the things here had been replaced, it was still evident that this was the park where they used to meet each other all the time, all through their childhood. She looked up, not quite sure why he could still smile. Should not he be angry at her, for running away with another man, for betraying him, for everything?

As if he was able to read all her thoughts, he led her to a bench, sat next to her, and finally spoke. "I died quite a while ago, from an accident. I never found anyone else, you know, in case you come running back to me. This flower, you can have it. Don't worry, if I wanted my revenge, I would have done something much earlier. You know I'm not the kind of people who can hold grudges for long." He laughed lightly to himself, and handed her the anemone.

She was about to take it from his hand, when he suddenly took her by surprise by putting the flower behind her ear.

And just then, the most magical thing happened. Time had reversed, and brought them back to when they were both young and alive, back to that day when he proposed to her. She knew it was that day, because it was the first and only time she got to wear that beautiful floral dress. It was also that dress that let her catch the Colonel's eye.

He was sitting next to her, just as they were, but there was something different about his eyes. They were no longer full of remorse, but instead filled with an excitement that could barely be contained. She did not know what was about to happen then, but she now knew.

"Imagine what you could do, if you were given a chance to change everything."

"Close your eyes," he whispered in her ear, and she gladly obliged. "Now answer me a question, will you marry me?"

"If I say yes, will you buy me a bouquet of anemones?" she asked, just as she did then. She knew she was annoying him, but she did not care. She loved the way he was when he was annoyed. At the same time, she was waiting for the Colonel to arrive. She was quite sure she would know what to do this time.

"Stop whatever you are doing, young lady with that pretty dress." That was it, the Colonel. The two of them turned their heads, and there he was, on his snow white horse, with his usual aura of haughtiness. "If you haven't heard, the fact is that, I am now quite in short of a bride. So if you won't mind, meet me at the church tomorrow morning. We are going to get married."

"What?" the Colonel was quite shocked when he heard Mason's voice, as if he had not even noticed that he was there before he spoke. "You're not. She's mine."

Just then, she heard the gun click. It was such a small sound, but it was enough to remind her of the one single reason she had betrayed Mason—only to save him. She knew that the Colonel always had a gun placed behind his back, and would use it to kill anyone who ever dared to get in his way. He was coldblooded like that. She knew it now and she knew it then.

"Would you take that chance?"

"No," she said it in a cold, strong voice, although her heart was breaking inside. "If I were given a choice, well, I'd much rather be with him." She smiled sweetly and pointed towards the Colonel.

The Colonel returned her smile, tipped his hat, and galloped merrily away. Mason looked at her, with nothing but sheer disbelief in his clear blue eyes. She found that she very much wanted to cry, so she turned and ran home before he could see her tears. And as to how many more times would she have to do this again, she did not know, and neither did she want to know.


So, what d'you think?