Inspired by the anticipation of self discovery, Emily bounced light-footed down the chamber in search of the section she sought, her steps almost became a dance as she swept from one side to the other getting ever closer to her own identity. An excitement began to bubble up inside her as she pondered on who she really was, and about her place in this written world of make-believe. She thought about characters and what little the reader really knew about them when picking up a book for the first time. As a story develops, so does the reader in their understanding of what is driving the character and the inner workings of what is making them tick. Right now Emily likened herself to a tabula rasa, or a blank canvas, a clean slate onto which a story would be molded from the imagination of the author then shaped as they saw fit. Emily wondered what her story would entail?
She came to about halfway down the chamber and there it was, section E. As with every section she had seen thus far, a highly decorative emblazoned sign with the appropriate letter stood next to the shelves to facilitate any visiting patron. On closer scrutiny Emily noticed that the shelves had an engraved letter running along the horizontal face at regular intervals, and as she trained her eyes down the line following the engraved letter, the expanse of section E became clear – it was big. She walked down to where the section started, her eyes darting over all the titles as she passed. She stopped abruptly, when, in the corner of her eye, a title sprang out at her, “Emerald Green.” She retraced her steps and ran a finger across the book spines as she went. A few moments later her finger stopped over the spine of a book, “Emily: A Lineage in History.” Quickly checking for any other titles making reference to her name and finding none, she slid the book from the shelf and examined the front cover in awe.
The cover was red and her name had been written with an illuminated style in gold letters. In a dizzy flutter, Emily looked around for somewhere to sit and read her story, she peered around one of the aisles which led to the upper floor and saw a flight of stairs leading up to it; she raced over to it and sat down on the second step. She opened the book and found a blank flyleaf, she turned it over and looked at the first page but saw no author name or any other indication as to who wrote the volume. She turned the page over and saw the chapter listing which had been written by hand in a fluid italic style; she studied all the entries and on an impulse flicked through the pages to about halfway finding the part of most interest to her.
With a sharp intake of breath, Emily stared down at a drawn portrait of herself, and on the opposite page to that, a brief overview of her character. She read her own description over and over until she learned every sentence off by heart. She began to wonder where and when her portrait was done,; she had no recollection of ever having posed for a picture. Emily looked up in hope.
“My dear author, where did this picture of me come from?”
No reply came back.
She tried again with the same result.
After a few more attempts she decided to give up, no more words of help from the author today.
Emily lowered her head, found the beginning of the book and became swallowed up in a most engrossing tale of personal history.