She sat in the vivid red roller coaster, trying to look as though she was truly excited about being here. The man sitting next to her made a comment, and she smiled weakly in return. An observer nearby could easily see the similarities between the two passengers' features: the same hooked nose, strong chin, and gray eyes. However, her visage also portrayed the influence of another person, a golden-haired beauty, whose memory still haunted them both. She lifted her arms off the restraint as the ride attendant came around to check that it was secure. The man next to her placed his hand on hers and smiled in anticipation. She smiled back; genuinely glad to see him happy for once. Internally, she sighed. He'd been trying so hard. She loved him, but he wasn't as experienced as either of them would like. It used to be easier, with the other woman around. The woman had never helped very much, but she had been there, smiling, laughing – most of the time. Just the presence of the woman had been enough for him. She still wasn't quite sure where the woman had went, or why. He would know, but she wasn't about to ask him. But they would do well enough on their own. They had to. He would learn, and so would she. This excursion was meant to make reparations for the mistakes he had made the last couple of weeks. She would never admit it to him, but she had never really enjoyed amusement parks. But she still went because she knew he enjoyed it. He felt that he had to take care of her, but once in a while, she liked to try to return the favor. For all his effort, he deserved it.
The train began pulling out of the station, and the man at her side reached over to squeeze her hand in excitement. She leaned her head on his shoulder briefly, and then smiled into his eyes. As she did, she saw a flash of gold out of the corner of her own. She whipped around as the observer slipped away into the crowd.
The woman watched as the train pulled out of the station, carrying the two people she had once known better than her own self. There had been so many misunderstandings. Now, this would probably be as close as she would ever get to them again. She turned to leave, pushing her way back through the crowds. Out of the corner of her eye, she saw her daughter whip around to look at her. She kept moving. Just before she left the station, she relented and turned around for one last glimpse of her daughter and the girl's father, her own husband, before they crested the hill and slipped down into darkness.