Demon Library: Where Angels Fear To Read
For fools rush in
and knock over a stand,
a floral display, a waste-paper bin;
loiterers loiter (as is their wont)
by the sign shouting “Silence!”
and only returning
from whence they came
at cloning time.
A book upon the Mafia,
once taken out,
remains taken out.
And the crumbs of information
gleaned from the Reference Section
are a scant comfort to readers
far and wide.
begins with a single step.
And then another…
before too long
you are halfway up the stairs;
nearing the centre of the Earth;
twenty-thousand leagues under the sea;
or landing upon the surface of the Moon.
How far away is your library?
Just a few steps?
Delilah Badger walked into the library.
There was nobody in sight.
“Is there anybody there?”
She waited for perhaps ten seconds (actually seven) and repeated her query, but with an emphasis on the word ‘anybody.’
“Is there ‘anybody’ there?”
Delilah walked over to the ‘Staff Only’ sign-encumbered door and knocked briskly three times upon its imposing façade.
The door could have been the entrance to an Egyptian tomb; it was as solid as a cliff face – and particularly uninviting.
Delilah tried the door handle. It turned. She pushed. It gave. Then swung open with all the grace and style of a ballerina (supposedly to allow a book-toting librarian easy access). Delilah entered the room beyond.
There was a sturdy Librarian’s mug on the coffee table, with steam curling up decorously from within it; a side-plate, with a partially eaten Rich Tea biscuit upon it, to the side. For a library staff room – it was certainly lacking something – librarians, for a start.
Having ascertained that there were no exits from here, Delilah returned to the main library itself. Still nobody in sight.
“Is there ‘ANYBODY’ at all, of any shape or size, in this LIBRARY!” shouted Delilah, flagrantly ignoring the ‘SILENCE’ signs that were dotted every six feet along the walls; being presided over by the master of the ‘SILENCE’ sign, located above the main desk; which had daubed upon the hanging sign, letters twelve inches high ‘quoting the inimitable: ‘SILENCE, Please!’
Delilah sighed; popped her bag open and took out the three books from within. She placed them upon the counter. They sat there, silently – well behaved books, they were.
Delilah wrote a quick note upon an ‘overdue’ slip of paper and popped it into the front of the top book; which, ironically, was ‘The Story of the “Marie Celeste” ‘ (with 35 illustrations) by Charles Edey Fay.
Delilah Badger left the library and was never seen again.
Posted in books, library, mystery, overdue, readme, story, writing
Tagged #dissapearances, #libraries, #library, #marieceleste, #shortstory, mystery, story