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Spider floss doesn't prevent my passing through the double doors of Reynoso. It's the undeniable stench of animal urine and swelled, heat-crisped library books that compels a painful dry heave. After a spell, I begin navigating its ruins.
Multitudes of genre litter every inch of the floor, layered like that of an undignified, massive grave. Ivy garland creeps moldy walls, and stretches toward the rays of sunlight that peeps through the shoddy roof. My only source of light.
Shelves lie horizontal like flicked dominoes. Every last one downed. Guinness worthy? Won't know since printing ceased back in 2025.
Remember why you're here.
My feet tread lightly on scattered spines until I come upon a rusty time capsule. Inside-- cataloged headstones naming each of the written works laid to rest in here.
I cut between several limping tables where tiny seats resembling slotted spoons are haphazardly strewn about. Among those buried in this section, Dr. Seuss and Miss Piggle-Wiggle.
Peering left, I spy 'Ten Apples Up On Top' (
). Ten pretentious Apples. Beside each-- a motionless mouse. Curse the reprehensible introduction of E-books! If not for its fruit that so many did eat, Reynoso Public Library would have stood a chance. May those Apples rot in ...
My foot triggers an electronic response from something on the floor. I look down just as a copper top version of 'The Fox and the Hound' (
) draws its last breath. Beneath its corpse, a partially exposed scroll that reads 'Friends of the Library - Annual Book Fair' along with something about the late author, Stephenie Meyer.
Curiosity has me reaching for the document just as a homesteading serpent pokes through, wielding its elongated tongue at me.
I race toward the opposite end of the building with a ruckus even Helen Keller would shush, stumbling upon the abandoned, disheveled librarian's station.
Oh, how I would benefit from the assistance of a chained-eyeglass-wearing, taut bun right about now
-- for stumble I did. Went down like the bookcases before me. If not for the cushion capacity of paperback Corrie Ten Boom, my head would have dashed the steel desk.
I remain in my pitiful heap. That is, until memory stirred from the works of Corrie.
"No pit is so deep that He is not deeper still."
...and that's how I knew I was in nonfiction.
I mount back on foot, determined to complete the mission I'd been sent here to do-- beginning with a painstaking search through the sea of books for the one that's like no other.
Nonfiction. Maybe self-help.
The alarm clock sounds, once again shelving my own interests for daily responsibilities. Nonetheless, my 'ultimate dream' remains viable.
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