The silence seeped around her as she sat at the desk in the Library, finishing off the list on her computer. Jamie looked at the clock on the wall. “Good grief! It’s almost 8pm, I’d better get home!”
Jamie threw on her coat, swathed her scarf around her neck, picked up her handbag and headed for the front door.
She pushed the button and the door slid open, then she leant over to the switchboard and turned off all, but one security light.
Jamie was about to walk out the door when she suddenly stopped in her tracks.
“Mammy why do I need to wear this horrible dress, you know it’s from last season. Everyone will laugh at me!”
“Now don’t be silly child, I have altered it so much nobody will even recognise it. You know we can’t afford to be buying fancy dresses, with the war going on. And anyway, Mr Butler says this is his favourite dress!” Scarlett screwed up her face and stamped her foot. “I don’t care what Mr Butler thinks!”
Jamie dropped her car keys with a clang, on the concrete step. Her eyes grew wide as saucers and she started to shake. She picked up her keys, shut the front door and stood inside the moonlit Library.
“Hello? Is there anyone there? You do realise you are trespassing? The Library is closed, you need to leave, now, or I’ll call the Police!”
The talking seemed to be coming from the other side of the Library. Jamie put down her bag, and pulled off her scarf, then slowly and silently crept around to where the sounds were coming from.
As she drew closer to the “Romance Section” the talking stopped, then she heard whispering, but it was coming from the “Adult Crime & Fiction” section.
Jamie drew closer to the whispering which she could now recognise as a man with an English accent.
“My dear Watson, you do realise we are getting very close to the murderer, and we need to get a move on.?’ “Yes, I know Mr Sherlock, but you’re rushing in full steam without a plan. We need to have a plan or we may be the next victims!”
Jamie rounded the end of the book stand with a flourish.
She stood there looking at an empty aisle with a shaft of moonlight streaming down through the skylight. A deerstalker cap lay on the floor, so she picked it up and laid it on one of the tables, thinking a reader must have dropped it earlier in the day, and would probably be back tomorrow to pick it up.
Jamie was about to head back to the door thinking to herself. “ I must be very overtired, to think I can hear voices, maybe I need a few days off.”
This time the whispering began way over in the “Children’s Section ”
“I don’t think you’re funny!” Jamie shouted. “The Police will be here any minute! So you had better leave, right now! The door isn’t locked, if you go now I won’t press charges!”
Jamie stood in the moonlight and listened.
“Ha Ha Ha, he he he, come along and dance with me!” “Mr Cat please don’t stand on the sofa! No, No, please don’t throw the dishes around, my Mother will be home soon!”
“Ah but Sally she isn’t here now is she! How about we make some drinks, I’ll just mix this with this and – oops! Would you like a drink of banana juice from my hat Sally? Careful my hat bites! Ha Ha!”
Jamie raced over to the Children’s Section and pulled up so quickly, she slipped on the polished floor. Wham! “Ouch, that hurt!” she cried.
There were several books scattered across the floor and over in the corner she found what looked like a china tea-cup.
“That’s odd, wonder where that came from? Well I’ll put it back in the kitchen tomorrow.” So she sat the cup down on the nearest table, picked up the books and piled them next to the cup. She knew she would be the first one in tomorrow so she would tidy everything up then.
Jamie was starting to feel very weary and was looking forward to heading home. As she headed for the door she stopped in her tracks, again.
“Mr Christian what do you think you are doing?” “Why, I’m taking over your ship of course, Mr Bligh!”
“You won’t get away with this, the fleet will be out to find you and when you are caught you will be tried for treason!”
“Ahh, but they have to find me first Mr Bligh, and by the time you get back, if you get back, I could be anywhere in the world!”
Jamie knew the whispers were coming from the “History” section, so she started off towards the back of the Library.
“I know where you are this time, you won’t get away!” She shouted.
Jamie could hear strange noises as though a battle was taking place. Men were shouting and crying out and she could hear the tinny sound of swords being used.
As she rounded the end of the aisle she expected to see several trespassers having some sort of fight, but there was nothing, nothing at all. Jamie stepped in something which stuck to her shoe, she knelt down to find out what it was. In the moonlight she found a dark, watery blob on the floor.
She put her finger in it and held it up before her eyes in the shaft of light.
Blood! There was blood on the floor! How could there be blood on the floor? Had she cut herself? Of course, that was it, she must have cut herself when she slipped over. “I’ll clean it up early tomorrow morning, I have to get home to bed.!”
Jamie sleepily headed back to the door but as she went to close it she heard the whispering again.
“Good-bye Scarlet.” “But Rhett you can’t leave now, I need you!”
“Scarlet my dear, I don’t give a damn!”
“Neither do I!” Jamie shouted.
“Whoever you are, don’t make a mess, and make sure you are gone by tomorrow morning. I’m tired and I’m going home to bed, good-night!”
With that she slammed the door shut and headed towards her car.
The next morning she arrived at the Library early. She walked around to find the things she had left on the tables. The deerstalker was gone, but in it’s place there was cigarette ash on the table, so she wiped it up.
Jamie headed over to the History section with the cloth, to clean up the blood on the floor, although she couldn’t find where she had cut herself.
The blood was gone, but a little way further on she found a yellow tropical flower lying on a table, so she picked it up and threw it in the bin.
Jamie then headed over to the Children’s section. The tea-cup was gone and the books had all been put back on the shelves. On the table lay a small jam tart in the shape of a heart.
Jamie picked it up and threw it in the bin as well.
She smiled to herself. “It never happened, I was just overtired and imagining things.”
The day dragged on very slowly, as usual until at about 6pm an English gentleman came in asking if anyone had found his cap which he had left there the day before.
“What sort of cap was it?” Jamie asked. “It was a deer stalker, it belonged to my Great Grandfather, I do hope I can find it!”
The cap Jamie had found was gone, so she didn’t mention it. “We’ll keep an eye out for it Mr Watson. I’ll give you a call if it turns up!”
Just then her colleague came up to her. “Jamie, do you know where this tea-cup came from? It was hanging up in the kitchen, but I have never seen it before. It is a very old, valuable cup, I wonder who it belongs to?”
“I have no idea, I guess one of the staff left it there. No doubt we will find out soon enough!”
Jamie walked into the main office and spoke to her Boss.
“Hi Jeanette, I was just wondering if it would be okay if I took a couple of days off, I haven’t been feeling the best lately, I think I need a rest.”
“Of course Jamie, you have been working very hard. Take a week off and relax, we have plenty of others to hold down the fort while you are away.”
And with that Jamie went home, collapsed on her bed and slept for the next six hours. The next day she looked through the newspaper to find another job. “One not associated with books of any kind!” she thought to herself.