A long time ago, I awoke. Or rather, I became aware of my own existence. I found myself in a small dark room, and when first opening my eyes, felt as though my head was resting on a desk with my body slouched over it. Faintly in the outline of the dark I see an open book, with the first pages blank. Realizing that I would not be able to move around in the dark, I got up and fumbled round the room.
Painfully kneeing myself into the desk, I let out indecipherable gibberish as I retreated to the out walls of the room. Soon after, I found a door, and turned the doorknob to take a peak outside.
A slight crack was too much for me as the I became blinded by the infinite light beyond the door. Fumbling more around the door itself, I finally found a light switch and flipped it up. A cool and tame light enveloped the room, and I finally noticed just how small the room was. There was the small desk I woke up at, the door, and that was pretty much it. Turning around to properly size it up, I come fact to face with the door once more. The door, the door, should I go outside to check once more?
Without giving me a chance to think it over, the door quickly opens itself up, and a tall women with a delivery bag in tow walks through curiously.
“Oh, what’s this? An empty room with just a desk and an open book? And…” the women scanned the room first at eye level, then directly under her, and found me.
“A new librarian huh? “ the women said as she crouched down to meet my gaze at eye level. “And best of all, you seem to be a completely blank slate, too! Oh how wonderful!” the women clapped in excitement.
“Little librarian, you are gong to make this an exciting place!”
Reaching into her surprisingly deep bag, she rifled through its belongings while almost falling inside.
“Aw shucks, today would be Faegoir would be bridging a ton of worlds. It’s such a pain, there is only so many of us workers and yet they keep piling on the deliveri- aha, found it!”
Retracting her hand from the bag, she pulls out a small rectangular box to be delivered to me, or rather, the owner of this space.
“Go on, it was made just for you!”
With a gentle beckon from the women, I take the package from her hand and open it. Inside I found a single quill with a note underneath.
“Oh the places you will go and the people you will grow. Take this quill and write the first page, because this is where your journey begins.”
Unsure of what to write or even how to write, the lady nodded ahead for me to go ahead and try something, anything. I had no memories prior to waking up and knew nothing of the world beyond these walls, so I wrote about the only thing I did know. While writing, I paused when I realized I was missing an important piece of information.
“Miss, what is your name?”
“Aw shucks, I ain’t anyone special. Just call me Courier, I deliver packages between the worlds through Faegoir!”
I nodded in understanding, and finished my first passage.
“Today I met a nice lady in my room. She calls herself The Courier, and she helps deliver packages to other people in other worlds.”
As I finished the first sentence, one of the walls in my room began to rumble briefly. Suddenly alarmed by the unprecedented event, the rumbling ceased just as fast as it had started, and in its wake created a hole in the wall. Peering beyond the hold was not the brightness beyond the door, but what seemed like another room. The Courier smiled as she crossed her arms nodded in approval of her wisdom. “Hmph, yes, I was right! You ARE going to be an amazing librarian!”
The Courier waved me off, and since then that was last I saw of the her. Even without my first friend, more and more unique entity found themselves in my space. Nobody ever seemed to come here intentionally, but that didn’t stop them from asking questions and perusing.
“Wow, so this is the collection of everyone’s memories that have ever come into this space? And each of these books are hand crafted and left behind by the people who visit here? That sounds awesome, can I write a book too?”
The more people come in, visit, and write a book, the more the Wanderer’s Library grows and grows in size. The Library itself was organized by the content of the wanderers’ books, and the more often a wanderer visited to write more books, the closer the rooms holding those books would appear to the front entrance. There were lots of old wanderers who came in and wrote amazing books, but as they no longer visited, the rooms in which their books were stored found themselves farther and farther from the entrance everyday. “See you later, okay Librarian?” the wanderer would say as they left with a bright smiling back into the bright light. What was in the light? Where were these people coming from?
On worse occasions a few wanderers would come in and try to cause trouble.
“Wow! so This is your space! How cool, do you mind if I stay here for a spell or two?”
But these wanderers would do no good, they only came to sit and chat with the wanderers who were here for good. They watched and waited as if something amazing was going to happen, and sometimes amazing things did happen. These new wanderers would write a book, and the library would open up a new wing never thought possible.
“Tsk,” the troublemakers would spit quietly to themselves. “Those wanderers are nothing special. I could do the same, it’s too much work to do so.”
A writer, not a speaker, I would try to talk to them anyway.
“Please, I don’t think you’ll enjoy yourself any longer if you just stay here and linger. There is a bigger world from whence you came, right? Maybe whatever you are looking for is still out there.”
“Pfft, I think I was going to leave anyway. This place is boring, I hope you enjoy yourself you hack of a librarian”, the troublemakers would sneer before going back into the light.
Sometimes amazing things would happen that solely were not from the books being created. On occasion, the wanderers would peruse the many wings and rooms where various volumes waited eagerly to be read, and sometimes these wanderers would bump into each other, finding out there was even another just as interested in the same niche things they were.
“Oh, you like camping too? How wonderful! What kind of places have you gone? What kind of foods have you eaten! How much fun did you have! Please please, tell me why you are here instead of out there!”
“Well, you see, I was actually looking for a place I haven’t gone to yet. The bookshelf in this room has many books about many places written by many wanderers I would love to meet as well. Say, why don’t we chat for a bit? I bet you have exciting stories to tell me too!”
“Wow, this place is amazing! I can’t believe I found it completely by accident. Say, Librarian, why don’t you advertise this place more? I feel like lots of people would benefit from knowing about a place like the Wanderer’s Library!”
“I don’t advertise, per say, I’m not even sure I would know how to do it. From what other wanderers have told me, the world of bright light is messy, and me trying to stand out wouldn’t work amongst the blurring and chaos of everything else. Besides…” I trail off, thinking of the wonderful wanderers who have written amazing books for everyone else to read, “This place isn’t really somewhere that finds you. You find it, because the value that comes from the Wanderer’s Library is the books you have yet to create and the people you have yet to meet. It’s a big ask for people like the troublemakers, and last I heard, the world of bright light was filled with them…”
“I don’t think so, Librarian. I think you’ve got the wrong picture of what the world of light really is like. Come on, I’ll take you out! My treat for being so nice to me!”
I unconsciously gulp as the idea wriggles its way into my mind.
“I’m… not sure I could go. What will happen to the books? What if I don’t come back like the other wanderers of before?”
“People come and go all the time, but you said so yourself, this place is important to you, right? So if you ever get lost in the world of light, I’m sure you can find your way back here. Important things always seem to, and everything else flows away as a result.” The young man claims while slamming his clenched fist into his chest.
“The world out there is amazing, and it’s the only get to see the experiences of the wanderers first-hand. You can live vicariously through your books that your wanderers creates, but you only assume whatever’s out there instead of what actually is. Besides, I’m sure the books will be fine even if you close the library for a bit. Heck, they may even better when you return with all the new things you want to write about!”
This was a weekly post for Sandbox Zero.
This week’s topic is Community Building