Friday, May 13, 2011

The Owl's Secret -- part 03

He lead her back through the over-filled stacks to his special place. At the west end of the library was his alcove, where two heavy oak chairs faced each other accross an ancient table worn smooth by the sleeves of several generations of students. The standing oval window was framed by dusty peach curtains trimmed with tattered gold fringe. The smell of old paper and lilac hung heavy in the warm still air. This was one of Sammy's holy places--a place that he was now willing to share.

As he searched for the Daily Register of 1831, Colleen looked around, running her slender fingers over the dark, ornate wood-work of the chairs, the window frame, and the book cases. Swirls, rosettes, loops, and even tiny figures of what could only be described as animals all waited there. Who could ever have the time and patience to do all this detailed work, she wondered, to take such care with items that most people would only glance at and move on. As Sammy flipped through the fragile pages, she tugged gently on the curtains and looked out over the grounds. Her mind wandered off to visit the freindly cows on a nearby farm.

The past tended to come to life and absorb all of Sammy's attention. People just like him--like them--had lived and studied here. What were they like? What were their hopes and dreams? And, most important of all: did their dreams ever come true. Strangely, Sammy worried about things like that. Ah! Focus.... Why did that owl have a book? Here it was: "May 28th, 1831--Dedication of the Grand Stair-case made possible by the generous donation of..." Yes, yes, he already knew that...

"Did you find anything, Sammy?"

"Oh..well..almost..."he stammered. it still took him by surprise that someone else was nearby. In the past he had always come here alone, always done most everything alone. he didn't realize how much he had minded that until recently.

"Aah! Here we are!," he excalimed, as she hopped up onto the table becide the book. 'Due payment being made to the Swabian Christian Rosenkreutz, wood-worker, for his wond'rous presentment of the forme of an owle."

"So that's his name?"

"Yes...hey! hold on..." Sammy got up and ran to a shelf, seizing a copy of Alchemists Through the Ages. "Here..wait..."

"What? What is it?"

"Look at this!"

He lay the book squarely on top of the Daily Register. Colleen twisted around to that side and looked. There on the page that Sammy had opened was a picture of 'Christian Rosenkreutz--master alchemyst of the 15th century.'

"See...," exclaimed the disappointed boy, "It couldn't have been him."

"So, what does this mean?"

"Mean! Well..." Sammy looked at the floor, wishing that he could crawl under the table. "It means that...that..."

"Oh, it's all right!" She jumped off the table and gave him a big hug from behind.

He gently touched her hands as they crossed on his chest. "Oh well, dead end..." She knew he was quite distressed, so she pressed the full length of her body against him. He relaxed at her touch and turned to look out the window.

Just then the bell rang for supper.

No comments:

Post a Comment