Return to The Books of The Dark Library

Welcome to the Dark Library


History:Not actually the first in the series; this was written some time after the early books.


Welcome to the Dark Library

Her knock came faint on the heavy oak frame as she stood in the open doorway, peering in to the gloom inside. She could see no sign of life beyond; no sign, in fact, of anything at all in the darkness. She turned partially, making ready to leave, when a faint movement in the blackness caught her eye. Warily, she coughed quietly and called out to the shape.

"Uh... Excuse me! Hello? I'm looking for a library..."

The shape stopped in its movements, and then moved slowly towards her. As it moved, she could see the faint light of a dying candle coming with it. She held onto the doorframe carefully, nervousness apparent upon her face as she waited to see who, or what, was coming.

"Greetings," said the shape as it finally stepped into the light, revealing itself to be a friendly-faced man. She sagged visibly with relief.

"Hi. Um. I'm wondering if you could help me. I'm looking for a library. I was told I could find one here."

The man nodded with a smile, stepping to one side and gesturing her indoors. "Please, come in. And welcome to The Dark Library."

She stepped inside, blinking slightly as her eyes adjusted to the gloom. Dim light filtered through from somewhere far above them, casting a pale white across the various surfaces. In the darkness, a desk was just visible, and behind that, row upon row of shelves. The shelves led back into the dark and disappeared, each one carrying with it a line of books. She peered hard into the vast blackness, concentrating on making out the edges of furniture and books. Such was her concentration, she jumped slightly when the man placed his hand on her shoulder.

"Is there anything I can help you with?"

She swallowed. Her face was given harsh shadows by the flickering candlelight, but it still betrayed her confusion. "I'm looking... I mean... A book. Any book. Something to read..."

He patted her gently on the arm, then guided her to the table. His voice held a hint of sympathetic laughter as he spoke to her. "The first thing we must do is find a new candle, otherwise you won't have enough light to read anything." He set the candle down, and picked up a small book from the table, passing it to her. "And this is the first book you must read."

She took the small book and absentmindedly opened it, flicking through the pages. Each page contained a small diagram; maps of various locations. She struggled to make sense of them.

"A map book? But why?"

A match flared and brought a new candle flickering into life. The stronger light played across their faces and spread into the room, so she could make out the many rows of shelves before them.

He raised the candle and looked her in the eyes. "It's a map of the library. So you can find your way."

She shrugged and slipped the book into her pocket. "Thank you, but I'm sure I won't need it."

He shrugged back. "I'm hoping you won't, but just in case we get separated; I would hate for you to get lost in a good book."

This page was created by James Corrin.
All works Copyright James Corrin unless otherwise stated.
For questions or comments, contact the webmaster.