There was a tinge of sadness in her voice, and a perplexing aloofness in her demeanor, as if she had buried her exuberance under the veil of melancholy. It was drizzling and the wet rail tracks glimmered in the diffused daylight, while the soft patter added to the poignance in the ambience. It was an unfamiliar sight for him. He had always adored her round, twinkling eyes, but today, in those he saw gaeity being replaced by gloom. He leaned down and caressed her little cheeks with his rough fingers. She hugged him as tightly as her delicate frame allowed her to, but not for long. With the whistle of the train approaching nearer to the platform, he tightened his grip around her as she feebly said, "Dad, I know that the country needs you, but please remember that I will be waiting, eagerly, to hug you again."