There was a small park that was located in the middle of Oxford, not far from one or two prominent primary schools, and a part of the city that was oddly quiet. The silence was beautiful, really. Some students attending the University of Oxford also found the park to be quite relaxing after a day full of classes and long winded lectures. One student in particular, a young man by the name Douglas Richardson, found this to definitely be the case, as he skimmed through one of his medical textbooks while sitting on a park bench. He was dressed quite well, with a very clean, unwrinkled white button up shirt, with a v neck sweater over it. His sleeves were rolled up as far as they would go without it being painful, and a stethoscope around his neck; a requirement for a class he had just come from.
For a moment, a faint sound brought his attention from his textbook, and he brought his head up to search for the cause of such sound. It was the sound of distress, an almost whimpered sob that Douglas could only picture a small child making. As he spotted a head of flaming red hair, he then saw the boy, who couldn’t have been older than six or seven, crying on a bench adjacent from his.
The boy was quite a sight. Blubbering uncontrollably, his shirt, which was a tad big on him, had a picture of an aeroplane on it, which didn’t surprise Douglas at all. Most young boys loved aeroplanes, jets, trains, and the lot; but this boy looked different. He looked crushed, as if his dreams had been thrown from the roof of a ten-story building. In his small hands, was a toy model of an aeroplane, a Lockheed McDonald 312, to be precise. Douglas tried to figure out how the hell he would know of what plane it was, but pushed the thought to the back of his brain as he stood up.
He walked towards the boy, and started noticing each small bit of information. The boy was quite pale, and his knees and elbows were slightly brown with dirt, and covered with bandages.
“Hello there,” Douglas managed to say smoothly, sitting down next to the blubbering young boy.
The boy looked up at Douglas, and for a moment, Douglas felt brilliant blue eyes piercing into the very depths of his soul. He noticed that it took a moment for the boy to gather himself.
“H-H-Hello, s-sir,” the boy stammered, finding it hard to speak after crying so hard.
“May I ask your name?”
“Ma-Mar-Martin C-Cri-Crieff, sir,” it took him a bit more time to get his name out, but he did, and that made him calm a little.
“My name is Douglas. So, Martin Crieff, why in the wide world would you be crying on a perfect day such as this?”
Martin stopped for a moment, staring at Douglas with slight bemusement, before finding his knees rather fascinating.
“Be-Because I-I-I can’t ever achieve my dream, that’s what the kids told me,” he sputtered out, almost in hysterics.
“And what would that dream be, if you don’t mind me asking?”
“I told the class that I wanted to be an aeroplane. They told me that I was a stupid clot.”
For a moment, Douglas stared at Martin, nodding, trying to process the information. He fit the pieces together, and let out a very small sigh, almost indistinguishable from a breath of air.
“Then they must be the stupid ones,” Douglas smiled, putting his hand on Martin’s shoulder, “because they don’t know what they’re talking about.”
“Of course not. In truth, it is impossible to physically become an aeroplane, but you could always be the person who drives it.”
Martin’s eyes lit up like stars. “You mean, I could drive the plane?”
“Yes, if you follow your dream, you may even become captain of the plane.”
Martin’s brain became almost fuzzy, and it took a moment for him to contain his excitement and happiness.
“Could you promise me something though?”
Martin looked again toward Douglas with happiness and awe. “Anything, Douglas.”
Douglas’ lips curled into a genuine smile. “Promise me that, whatever you do, whatever happens, you will always strive to reach your dream, and never stop until you get there.”