A young man who has been mourning his sister who died in an accident eight years before is stunned when he sees her at the home of a new friend from work.
Danny Ballon was just 17 when his older sister, Lily, died in a car accident with her husband. It was very traumatic for Danny and his parents since Lily and her husband’s bodies had burned in the wreck.
Two months after Lily died, the Ballons decided to leave Boston and move to Los Angeles as far away as possible from the place where their beloved daughter had died. Danny adapted to his new life in California, but he never ever forgot his beloved sister.
Over the next few years, Danny lived what to outsiders seemed a normal life, but his parents knew that he had never gotten over the loss of his sister. Every year, he marked the anniversary of Lily’s death. He couldn’t believe she was really gone, something in his heart told him it just couldn’t be.
Danny went to college and got his degree in mechanical engineering, and once he graduated, he accepted a job offer in Boston.
“Oh Danny,” his mother sighed. “I honestly don’t think going back there is such a good idea…”
“Mom,” he said. “I think it’s exactly what I need, a way to get closure, to come to terms with Lily’s death. It’s been eight years and I still can’t believe it…” So Danny went back to Boston and got himself a small apartment in his old neighborhood.
Work was challenging but he loved it, and now that he was back in Boston, he felt more at peace, as if some answer he’d been seeking was closer at hand. He made several friends but became particularly close to his immediate superior, Peter Sully.
Miracles happen when you least expect them.
Peter was a calm, kind man and was often teased by the other engineers because he never joined them for after-work drinks. Peter was always in a hurry to go home to his wife to whom he was devoted. “Can’t blame him,” said one of Danny’s friends enviously. “She’s the most beautiful woman I’ve ever seen!”
Danny was curious about this lovely wife, but Peter had no photos of her on his desk. Then one day, Danny had his chance to meet the famous Mrs. Sully when Peter invited him to his home for dinner.
On his way to Peter’s house, Danny bought a nice bottle of wine and a bouquet of summer flowers for his hosts. He arrived right on time and was greeted by Peter with a broad smile. “Come on in, Danny, meet my lovely Lily!”
“Lily?” asked Danny. “My sister’s name was Lily.”
“I didn’t know you had a sister!” exclaimed Peter. “Does she live in Los Angeles?”
Danny shook his head. “No. My Lily died in a car accident eight years ago.”
Peter looked sympathetic and said, “I’m so sorry, Danny, I had no idea!”
It was then that a tall, slim woman with long auburn hair walked in carrying a tray with wine glasses. “Danny,” Peter said proudly, “I would like you to meet my wife, Lily!”
Lily smiled sweetly and then she gasped. The tray slipped from her fingers and all the glasses shattered on the floor. “Danny?” she asked. “Danny, is that really you?”
Danny couldn’t believe his eyes. The woman Peter had said was his wife was his sister Lily! Danny swayed and fell over in a dead faint. When he came to, he was lying on a couch and Peter was looking at him with concern.
“What’s going on here?” he asked. “You faint and my wife is in shock…Do you two know each other?”
Danny sat up and reached for Lily’s hand. He kept patting it, sure that this was all a dream. “Lily?” he asked. “It’s really you?”
Lily was smiling, that wonderful smile Danny remembered so well. “Yes, Danny, it’s me.”
“I thought you were dead, we buried you!” Danny exclaimed. “Mom and dad…We’ve been mourning you for eight years!”
“I’m sorry Danny, but I wasn’t myself for a long, long time,” Lily explained. “The night he died, my husband told me he was leaving me, he was having an affair. We ended up having an argument and he beat me very badly.
“He must have thought he’d killed me because he dumped me by the side of a deserted road. The woman in the car must have been his mistress. I was found by some kids the next day and they took me to hospital.
“I had a bad concussion and some brain damage, and it took a long time for me to remember who I was. Then I met Peter.” Lily smiled at her husband lovingly. “And little by little, I became myself again.
“But when I went looking for you, you, mom, and dad were gone and I didn’t know where. I never imagined my baby brother would walk right into my house!” Lily put her arms around Danny and hugged him tightly.
Danny called his parents and told them that Lily was alive and happy, and they flew in the next day. Watching his parents’ reunion with Lily, Danny felt that a long nightmare had finally come to an end.
What can we learn from this story?
- Miracles happen when you least expect them. When Danny agreed to have dinner with Peter, he never imagined he’d find the sister he thought had died in an accident.
- Trust in your heart. Somewhere deep inside, Danny always felt his sister wasn’t dead, and he was right.