“...the War of the Worlds is one of my favourites,” said Connie, “But it’s a bit… well, scary, so…”
Steven and Connie sat in the Titanic’s library, going over the innumerable books collected within. They had been looking at books throughout the morning, comparing what they had and hadn’t read; Steven had had access to more, but most of his books were ‘Pearl-approved’, which left his palette slightly less diverse than Connie’s. He loved discovering this new world with her, picking up on what he had missed.
“Ooh, what about this one?” asked Connie, “Around the World in Eighty Days… well, it’s Verne, so it’s got to be…”
“I’ve read that one!” exclaimed Steven, “It’s about this rich man named Fogg who makes a bet to travel around the world in… well, eighty days. That one was good!”
“Travelling around the world,” Connie sighed, “Can you imagine all the places you’d go?”
“Well, I’ve never left England,” replied Steven, “So I wouldn’t…”
He clicked his fingers.
“Wait, yeah I have!” he exclaimed, “We’ve been to Scotland and Wales! Have you been there?”
Connie shook her head.
“Okay, so in Scotland, there’s this really big railway bridge,” he explained, “It bends! It’s at… um… Glenfinnan! Pearl says that’s where Bonnie Prince Charlie landed too, but my family was on the other side so we’re not supposed to like him… oh, and there’s these huge mountains all around it!”
He smiled, reminiscing.
“But I think I prefer Wales,” he continued, “There’s this mountain train there. Pearl says she and my mother went there when it opened and one of the engines rolled down a cliff, but it’s been really safe since then! But it goes up this big mountain called Snowdon, and when it’s clear… you can see everything. Wales, England, Scotland, Ireland, the Isle of Man…”
“It sounds magical,” mused Connie.
“It is,” declared Steven, “It’s like… nothing’s built up and there’s sheep and mountains and really really teeny little trains, and this big castle at Caernarfon and waterfalls and caves, and they say King Arthur actually came from there, and… yeah. It’s magical.”
“Maybe you can go there one day!” he exclaimed, “Maybe… maybe we can take you!”
Connie’s face lit up.
“Really?” she exclaimed, “That would be…”
“...it wouldn’t happen,” she lamented, “I mean, once we get off this ship, you’re gonna go one way and I’m gonna go the other… and you’re rich and I’m not and…”
She was cut off as Steven put a hand on her shoulder.
“Hey,” he said, “We’re gonna stay friends. We can write to each other… and I can come visit you, or you could come to our place. It’s on a beach, I think! It’ll… it’ll work out, Connie. And one day, we’ll come back over and I’ll show you Wales.”
“Deal! And we’ll go back on the Titanic!” she declared, “And I’ll be in First that time!”
“And I’ll be in Third!”
The two laughed heartily. Pearl glanced over, and for a moment Steven thought he was laughing a little too loud, but instead she simply smiled and returned to conversation with Lapis and Sapphire.
“So, what’s next, Ms. Librarian?” asked Steven.
Connie grinned, picking up the next book on the pile.
“Bradshaw’s Descriptive Railway Hand-Book of Great Britain and Ireland?”
“...I think we can pass on that one.”