College teacher Ellie Standish thinks she’s on a sleek modern train heading to a conference on women’s studies in Seattle, but she awakens from a night’s doze to find herself on a bizarre historical train full of late Victorian era reenactors who refuse to come out of character. When the leader of the group—one handsome, green-eyed Robert Chamberlain—finally convinces her the date is indeed 1901, a skeptical Ellie decries any eccentric theories of time travel and presumes she is smack dab in the middle of a very interesting historical dream. She turns the directorial reins of her dream over to one smitten and willing Robert, only to realize that dreams cannot last forever. Someday she must wake up to reality, though Ellie no longer has any idea what reality is. She only knows that Robert must play an important part in her future. But how can he...if he’s only a figment of her imagination or worse yet...a man who belongs to an era long past?
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"I'm not going to marry an eighteen-year-old girl, Grandmother." Robert turned away and strode to the bay window. He stared down onto the city below.
"Robert, be reasonable. You need to marry sometime. Don't you want a wife? One young enough to give you children? Any one of your sister's friends would be quite suitable."
"I'm afraid not, Grandmother. I'm waiting."
"Waiting for what?" Mrs. Chamberlain muttered.
"The right one. She will come along. I know it."
"For goodness sake, Robert. Where will you find her? You never appear even to look."
Robert continued to stare out the window with his hands clasped behind his back. "I do not think I have met her yet, but I feel certain that I will know her when she does finally appear."
"Robert, what nonsense! You are usually so sensible in all matters except when it comes to this subject. It seems my son's wife raised a silly romantic," the older woman muttered.
"Perhaps she did, Grandmother. Perhaps she did," he murmured with a smile.
"Give me great-grandchildren, Robert. I cannot live forever."
He turned away and grinned at the frail appearing silver-haired woman resting on the green velvet settee.
"Yes, you will, Grandmother. You will outlive us all."
"Hmmppff," she muttered looking away. "The house is quiet. We need children in it once again."
"Perhaps my sister can do the honors in a few years, Grandmother. All she lacks is a suitable husband." He consulted his pocket watch.
She eyed him with a piercing stare.
"Have you become a confirmed bachelor, Robert? Has time passed you by then?"
Robert laughed and bent to kiss his grandmother's pale cheek.
"I hope not, madam. I did not intend to remain a bachelor for the rest of my life."
"Then why do you wait? Give me a practical reason, none of your romantic musings."
He straightened and grinned. "I can only assure you once again that I wait for the right woman. I know it sounds foolish, but it is the truth." He turned away toward the door. "I must go into the office to see to a few things before we leave tomorrow. I look forward to riding the train. I always do."
Copyright Bess McBride 2008Review:
Fantastic Review! "Bess McBride brings the past to life in her fabulous rendition of a time travel story where love conquers all.... You don't want to miss Bess McBride's perfectly titled, completely engaging, attention grabbing work. She's on a professional roll.
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Book Description The Wild Rose Press, 2008. Paperback. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M1601543018