Love Lost: The Romantic Story of a CoinThe 1863 was a tumultuous year; a year of uncertainty. The Civil war raging, untold numbers of brave young men went off to battle. This is but one story, from among millions.
They had a long courtship. She, beautiful as the morning sun, loved him dearly, and he held a devotion for her as no other. As much as they cherished every moment with each other, they knew that they should soon be separated for a very long time. The day finally came when a handsome man in a Union uniform showed up on her doorstep. He held in his left hand a bunch of freshly-picked wildflowers, and in his right hand was a small box. With tears in her eye, she bid him to come inside and sit down. After a brief period of small talk, he handed her the box. When she opened it up, her heart sped up, and she felt as if her breath had been taken away. It was a beautiful necklace, and the charm was a coin. Not just any coin, but a Seated Liberty dime. She had not seen one like this before; it had arrows at the date. He told her the arrows represented how fast his love would fly to her. As touching as this was, there was more! On the reverse, he had spent hours carving a single initial, with loving detail. She flew into his arms, embracing him, and sobbing on his shoulder. The time had finally come, and they said their final farewell.
Two hard-fought years later, the young man was now an old soldier. War will do that to you; two years might as well be twenty. The war now over, he looked forward to returning to her. They had exchanged correspondence whenever possible, but this had become less and less. As he approached her house, his excitement grew. Gone were the days of death. He could now attempt to make something resembling a normal life. He knocked on the door, a bunch of freshly-picked wildflowers in his left hand. The girl's mother answered the door. No, she wasn't in. In fact, she did not live there anymore. Spending so much time apart was unbearable for her. She met somebody else, and they had gotten married and moved away. The man was heartbroken. Sometimes the memory of her was all that made him get up in the morning, and sweet dreams of her were the only thing that could keep the hellish nightmares at bay. As he turned to leave this place, full of rage, the mother told him to wait. She had something for him. She returned with the necklace. He accepted it and began the long sad walk home.
As the days passed, he finally accepted that he would never see her again. He reasoned that he didn't need her anyway. The necklace, he could sell. The coin, though...that was a different story. He didn't want anyone else wearing it. He took the necklace to the workshop and removed the coin. He then carefully selected a scrap piece of metal from the bench that would just fill the hole, and pressed it into place.
Decades later, when that soldier went to the place that has no war, his son found that coin in the old man's dresser drawer. As much as he was angry, a part of him still loved her, and he could never bear to get rid of that coin.