The Immortal Library

The Immortal Library

A Story by Molly

Stuck in a library for so long, a forgotten girl is finally found.

The Immortal Library
I've always loved the smell of books. The library was my utopia where people were quiet and books surrounded me everywhere I went. Books of knowledge, history, romance, and stories that are known and stories that are unknown. Books lining every shelf. But I wasn't satisfied.
Even though the library was my home, I was the nerd in the school social system. More like the nerd of nerds. The normal nerds shunned me and I finally got tired of it. I couldn't let go of my books though. They're my world, my imagination. I am nothing without my books.
So I was destined to be the nerd and live in the library forever.
Back then, I said it metaphorically. I didn't think it would really happen.
Years passed, the library closed and I was left in there. Boarded up and abandoned, I stayed there with my books. I didn't need to eat or drink because paper and ink were my nourishment. I had plenty of it. No one wanted or needed to read books like I did. I was always alone before but now I was truly alone and knowing that no one would visit the library open ever again.
Then the door creaked open (in god knows how many years) and I saw that it was night time. Naturally, I didn't need any light to read. My eyes always adjusted to darkness easily, and sometimes I had a full moon that gave me light to read.
The rusted old hinges in the door squeaked, the first real sound I've heard in years. Age old dust stirred, moon light filtered towards me, but kept me in the darkness. I stared in wonder, then in shock.
Laughing figures appeared in the doorway, one staggering and two guffawing at him. They carried beer bottles in their hands. It terrified me that other human beings had come here. It angered me that they had intruded on my sanctuary. My heartbeat quickened in my fury and before I realized it, I was moving.
I slammed the door shut behind them as the strangers staggered in. It became dark again and I heard the men panicking. I sighed, annoyed. Taking a wax candle off a shelf, I lit it and a small circle of light surrounded me.
For once, in many years, I noticed that my dress was in tatters, the colors faded by time, dust and darkness. My long dark hair hung down to the floor and seemed never ending. Much like the story of the princess that was stuck in a tower and a prince climbed up it to rescue her by climbing her hair.
I hadn't wondered how long I'd been in the library until now. It must have been years and years because I couldn't remember when I wasn't in the Library, full of books. I've never questioned my existence until now. Until now, I've always been in the dark.
Until these fools opened the door.
"You shouldn't have come," I whispered, my voice hoarse from lack of vocal use. I winced and cleared my throat. It even sounded rough to me.
"Who are you?" one asked after a lot of attempts at speaking.
My eyes widened at the question. My mind, filled by knowledge from books, didn't know who I was. "I don't know," I said, honestly, my voice cracking.
There was a long, pregnant pause in the air. It was useless, I couldn't be near these human beings anymore. It made me question my reality.
Instead of saying any more, I put the candle down and turned to go back into the darkness.
"Wait!" the drunk one slurred. "Are you the ghost of the girl that got trapped here?"
I stopped. Many scenarios went through my head. Me, snapping at them; me, walking away from them. But then I thought.
Now, I was very much alive. My heart beat, blood ran through my veins. I could pick up things just like any other solid human. I was very much alive. I never died. I wasn't exactly trapped but I couldn't feel the need to leave my library.
"No, I'm not," I whispered, answering his question.
"Then who are you?"
That question again. I've been here for so long, I had forgotten my name. I got impressions of reality from long ago. People's mockery, concern, and pity filled my mind.
I really hated reality, so I had lost myself in fantasy, imagination and knowledge, giving me the immortality I had read about in so many books without knowing it. But it was a curse from others perspective. I forgot who I was and destined to stay in this library forever.
"I don't know."
Just to get them to stop asking, I blurted out the first name that popped into my head. "Daeira. That's my name. I hope you don't stay long enough to use it though. Do what you want here then get out. Outsiders, much less drunkards, shouldn't be here."
My scathing tone drew the man closer for some unknown reason.
"Hunter, go take Jack outside," he said as he kept staring at me. He held out his hand as if to touch me, afraid that I really was a ghost and would disappear any moment.
Pure terror shot through me. I was already so confused just by his words, who knew what would happen if he came into physical contact with me. I recoiled and dashed right out of his reach. I bolted through the maze of the endless rows of books. My breath came in harsh gasps, the sound unnaturally loud in the quiet sanctuary.
Without a though, I had fled to my niche within the library. Blankets covering the floor where I sometimes slept, my favorite books stacked up to impossible heights, the single open window that wasn't boarded up was filtering moonlight through.
Then I heard his breathing, harsh like mine and his heart beating as loudly as mine.
I couldn't take any more.
I fell to the ground, my hands covering my ears, my eyes squeezed shut. If any more reality came into contact with me, my fantasy would shatter. My imagination and mind broken. My books would be worthless. I couldn't lose them. They were all I had in this world, this library.
I would be nothing if they were gone. I would die.
A warm hand touched my shoulder. A cry was ripped from my throat as I scrambled away from him. In my haste, I knocked into a stack of books, causing them to topple over. I covered my head with my arms to block some of the books. When none hit me, I glanced up and saw the stranger above me, blocking all the books. He grunted when a thick volume hit his back and I winced.
He stared down at me with curiosity in his surprisingly light, hazel eyes. I stared at him in fear, even as he slowly backed away from me. We didn't speak, only stared at each other. After a while, it became obvious that he wouldn't leave, so I awkwardly tried to start stacking my books up again. He kept on watching, and even as I finished, he still hadn't said anything yet.
I wasn't even sure he could see me since it was well past midnight and the moon wasn't bright enough for a human to see well. I caught myself when I almost went to light a candle for him.
I closed my eyes and gave in. I lit the candles surrounding my little area. The place was surrounded with a soft golden glow and I gasped at the large man that invaded my haven. He was tall. I barely reached his shoulders and felt like a child in his presence. I was too terrified before to get a good look at him before.
He had brown, hazel eyes, dark brow, almost black hair. Dressed in jeans and a black top that showed his muscles.
He had never sat down since the book avalanche and I found myself looking around for a chair or something to make him comfortable, then cursed myself. I wanted him to leave, not get comfy.
It was no use. Reality had already crept into my mind and it wasn't leaving anytime soon. I just had to make sure my imagination was still with me constantly.
"How do you see in the dark like that?" he asked, startling me.
I stopped piling up books and looked back at him and answered honestly. 
I've always been able to see this way."
He stared at me some more and I stood there awkwardly. Unsure, I gestured for him to sit on feeble blankets.
Slowly, as if he didn't want to startle me, he sat down and leaned against an sturdy stack of books.
My head was pounding.
Sighing heavily, I did what I always did. I went into the nearby shelves and breathed in the smell of paper, leather, ink, and old books. Every book had a different smell, some muskier than others and some smelled crisper, sharper pages than other books.
Going on the smells of different books, I started gathering up different books. Once I was satisfied, I headed back, seeing that the stranger was still there. still sitting in the same spot.
I eyed him suspiciously. "Why are you here?" I asked, "This isn't the place for regular people."
"Why are YOU here? You shouldn't be here either," he replied.
"You can't answer a question with a question," I said in annoyance.
"But you don't find a phantom girl in an abandoned library every day," she shot back.
I put down my books and crossed my arms. "So you find a girl in an abandoned library every other day?"
His mouth twitched in amusement and more irritation flashed through me. This is why I hated reality. It annoyed me.
Then he became serious again. "Why are you here, Daeira?"
The question rattled through my heat, through my heart, and echoed deep into my soul. I swallowed down the rise of panic. "I've always been here. I don't know anything else."
But that was a lie. I didn't remember, but I knew I had a place in the world before the library was closed. That was too long ago, though; years and years ago. I had probably been in the library for many, many years.
The strangers clothes were nothing like the impressions of people I couldn't remember from before. I just knew that the men that broke in were people of the present time. I was but an old relic of the past.
The more I thought of it, the concept and idea became clearer to me. Time had stopped for me when they closed me in the library, when reality moved on. I abandoned reality to stick with my imagination and I never questioned my choice.

© 2013 Molly

Author's Note

I wrote this on my tablet, so please go easy on me :) Also, this was a spur of the moment kind of thing

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Added on January 17, 2013
Last Updated on January 18, 2013
Tags: library, immortal, books, lonely




Ah... I'm Molly. The weird, awkward hermit that doesn't like people... Yep. That's me... Alright, I'll be honest... I love Owl City (they are my heart and soul) along with the actual owls :3 Mus.. more..

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