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Golden Ticket This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

Wandering alongside the aging brownstone homes facing the snow-veiled park, all of her belongings stuffed into a single brown paper bag, Adrienne questioned the vagabond lifestyle that she had chosen. When she had left her parent’s home, she had never anticipated the ache for company that being a vagrant would bring, wounding her far deeper than ever before. She missed the vigilance of her parents, always protecting her from the heartbreaks of the world. Now, gaping longingly into the welcoming homes, the vivacious children playing while the beaming parents looked on, the family bursting with perpetual love, made her heart feel as shattered as the ice beneath her feet. She vaguely remembered her mother’s compassionate voice as she told her that nothing could ever exceed the value of a loving family, like a golden ticket in the game of life, exceedingly special, disappointingly rare, and to be treasured more than anything. “If you are so lucky to have one”, she had said, “never let it go. You my beloved daughter are lucky.” Adrienne had let her family go, she had threw her golden ticket into the gutter and was speeding into an unknown future, leaving everything and everyone who protected and cherished her behind.





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