When I woke up today, there was a hole in the ceiling.
Not a very big hole, of course, about the width of my smallest finger. But there was light coming through it. It was so bright and it hurt my eyes.
"Is that sunlight?" I asked.
Jo scoffed. "Of course it's sunlight."
I squint up at it. "Do we have any tape left?"
She points. "There's some over there, by the cash register."
I go over, stepping over several piles of books that I made the other day in an effort to organize them all again. I've already organized them by color, size, title, author, most interesting plot lines, and now I am in the midst of organizing them by the year they were published.
Under the books is the big Oriental rug. I can almost remember back when it was soft and plush. I think Mama might have put me down on it sometimes. And I think she gave me some toys to play with and then watched me. But then I don't quite know if that is real or in my imagination. Sometimes I don't care if I am imagining it. Then I can make up all sorts of things. One time I imagined that I fell off the rug and hurt my head, and then Mama picked me up and hugged me to her, and kissed me and told me I was her special darling and all sorts of other pet names.
Maybe that did happen. I hope so.
Parts of the rug are still soft now, but other parts have been chewed through by Gatsby and the other mice. Most of it is becoming threadbare.
The tape is next to the cash register, as Jo said it would be. The cash register doesn't work anymore. One time, I picked it up and smashed it against the ground to make it open up. The keys went skittering everywhere. The drawer fell open, but there wasn't any money left. I guess Dad must have taken it with him. It's too bad. I don't think it would have been worth anything anymore even if I had found some, but I might have been able to burn it. The lightbulbs have been slowly going out, and I only have three left to replace them with. After that I guess we will start to use candles. There are exactly 23 of those.
I take the tape and reach up and put some over the hole. Jo watches me do it. "What's for dinner?" she asks.
"I don't know why you ask me that," I say. "It wasn't funny the first time, and it only gets worse each time you ask it."
She snorts. "I think that it is quite funny."
(Perhaps you are wondering how I am able to recall our conversations in such great detail. The reason for this is simple: there is nothing else with which my brain might be filled except the inane details of my conversations with Jo and the others.)
I realize that I have forgotten to introduce myself. I am Lilith Drew. I live in what I believe are unusual circumstances. However, I have never seen other circumstances, so I can't truly say they are unusual. I live in a bookstore. I spend most of my time reading and, as I already mentioned, organizing, the books. How many books? There are 7,568 of them. I have read almost all of them. I am still working on the dictionary and encyclopedias. In the meantime, I have decided to write my own book.
At first I tried to write down what happened over the course of my day. Here is what that looked like:
1. Woke up
2. Ate breakfast
3. Organized books
4. Ate lunch
5. Did exercises taken from a book titled 101 Ways to Get Moving! 6. Organized books some more
8. Ate dinner
9. Played cards
10. Went to bed
As you can see, it was not very exciting.
Although there aren't any interesting events in my life, my peculiar lifestyle might interest some readers, should any of them be able to find this bit of paper in the future.
If you are reading this, hello! I salute you in the future and hope you have a more exciting life than I do.
I know this is too late for submission, but I decided to put it in anyway.
So here it is!