Shengliver’s Note: Teen Zijun writes a sequel to Sharon’s story, which is a cloze test found on Page 32, New Senior English for China Book 7 by PEP (People’s Education Press).

sharon's story 

Sharon arrived in New York City, the Big Apple. Seeing the skyscrapers all around and the streaming traffic on the streets, she felt dizzy. There were such hordes of people in the city that Sharon had no idea where the very man she was seeking was. She spent three days combing the entire neighbourhood that Tim was supposed to live in according to the address on the note she held tightly in her hand all the time. At last she located the right house. She knocked at the door but there was no answer. She visited the house the next day. Still no one was in. This kept up for the next two weeks until one day she came across an old lady. The lady said, “I used to be Tim’s neighbour. I regret to tell you that Tim has left the city because his company went bust some time ago. Tim is up to his ears in debt. Listen, youngling, be careful of your love. Maybe it is not worthwhile paying so much on your part.” After hearing that, Sharon, depressed, decided to return to her home village in the country.


On the train, many couples were seated together flirting their time away. Sharon sat by the window all alone. She stared at the fleeting tracks below and memories crowded in. She thought of the scenes where Tim and she had been pacing along the tracks talking about anything and everything under the sun. In one scene, Tim confessed to her, “I used to be fed up with my life in New York. But here, Sharon, you have helped me to see what life is all about. It is you, Sharon, who have brought me back to life. How could I live on if we were apart someday? I belong right here with you.” Looking back on those days, Sharon thought everything had seemed so sweet then. “Was he possibly lying to me?” Sharon wondered, trying not to cry out. The train was speeding through the Midwestern American landscape.


When Sharon finally got back to her home in the country, she found an airmail letter in the mailbox. Oh, it was from Tim. It had arrived two days before. She was totally at a loss. She thought she might have been too sensitive and that she might have misunderstood Tim. With a flicker of hope in her eyes, she tore open the envelope, fingers trembling. The letter read, “I’m sorry, Sharon. My company has gone bankrupt and I am in trouble now. I am not well off enough to provide you with a comfortable life. But I would like to see you one more time. I am going to visit you in a week. If you don’t want to see me anymore, I will leave you for good. Will you still love me, Sharon?” Reading the familiar handwriting on paper, Sharon wept long and hard.


From then on, every day Sharon went to the local train station hoping to meet Tim sooner. On the third day, Tim appeared on the platform. It was a downcast Tim. The robust Tim was nowhere to be found. When they met, he gazed at Sharon silently. Sharon broke the silence asking, “Do you know, honey, that I travelled to New York in search of you?” Tim answered, “Yes, I heard about it. But Sharon, why were you so silly? I mean I’m sorry about all this. But now here I am. If you would accept me, I will leave you alone no more.” Sharon hugged Tim before he could finish, tears all over her face, heart pumping wildly. They were reunited at the very train station where they had met for the first time when Tim came to the village five years before.


Soon Sharon and Tim got wed at the village church and they lived happily ever after. Every day at dusk they paced along the tracks hand in hand, watching the sun setting below the horizon, listening to the trains whistling by.


All good things must come to an end. Sharon and Tim’s halcyon days did not last very long. One morning, Sharon was found dead beside the rail tracks. It turned out that Sharon had been killed in a traffic accident the night before when she went out to feed the cattle at the cowshed. According to the law, Tim came into possession of Sharon’s farm. On the farm, Tim earned lots of money and got all his debts cleared within the next two years.


Some years later, Tim became neurotic. Seldom did the folks in the farming community see Tim out of his farm. And he stopped pacing along the tracks in the evening. The villagers thought Tim must have been grieved to the core by Sharon’s death.


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