I clambered over the top of the window, jumped down onto a box, and then on to the floor. I padded over to the door and looked at the handle. I heard footsteps in the corridor, this might be Roger as he’d heard Angela leaving and didn’t want to meet her after their recent row , so I flattened myself against the wall just to the left of the door. Sure enough the door opened slowly and Roger appeared, looking a little hesitant. I thanked Archimedes for his help and ran into the corridor. I jumped up to operate the silver plate on the wall and the door opened, taking what seemed like an eternity to provide a gap large for me to skedaddle through. There were more people around than the last time I was here, but luckily there was a shelf for me to hide under. I could see shelves of books to my left and the best way to get there undetected, or with the lowest risk of detection, was under the tables where the people were seated working away at their computers or reading books. In other words, they were distracted. I readied myself for the run under the desks. Three, two, one…and off I went leaping over bags and avoiding swinging feet. I reached the shelves and took stock of my situation. Here was the politics section with magazines and newspapers as well as books. There was a lot of politics and no humans, so I could observe the choice. I did a few test jumps onto the shelves and could only reach the lower two, the highest would be out of reach for now. There were some gaps I could use to hide in when someone came along to browse and occasionally there was a short cut for a cat to the other side of the shelf. Politics and Political History were duly noted in my mind. And now I wanted to go downstairs to the first floor.
A member of staff was coming my way pushing a trolley with two shelves, an upper and a lower. He was picking out books and placing them on the trolley. The lower shelf was almost full and the upper one was clear. Why would he be doing this? I wondered. Then I remembered that lazy people also used libraries and couldn’t be bothered with the effort of finding a book themselves, so they asked the library staff to get the book for them, and then all the lazy person had to do was turn up at the front desk, present their library card, and the aforesaid book was pressed into their lazy hand. This trolley was for the lazy people and my guess was that the man who was doing the lazy people’s work for them would start at the top of the library and work his way down, so next stop first floor. When he came to a halt again in the Politics section I crept onto the lower shelf and found a crevice between two books that I could hide in. Sure enough we proceeded to the lift and the man pressed the number 1. First floor here I come, in a trolley.
The doors closed and there was a shudder as the lift headed downwards. At the first floor, the trolley headed towards the Geography and Travel sections, where I made my exit by Asia. As expected, Africa, North America, South America, Europe, and Australasia were close by. The first floor seemed to be another fact floor. I found there were two sets of stairs and the ones at the back were very quiet because they were by the toilets. That’s how I would get down to the ground floor. I sprinted from Geography to History and considered the selection from a safe space in the Ancient Greece section. There were hundreds of books on Egypt, Italy, England, and Turkey.
Next to History was Science. I gazed at books on all the famous scientists including Einstein and Isaac Newton who it seems is responsible for Gravity. He was hit on the head by Gravity according to the book I saw the blurb for and so it’s his fault when I fall off fences and walls. Why did you do that Isaac, I wondered, couldn’t you have let it be? Next to Science was the Arts and books about all the artists other than Rubens and Velazquez I’d never read. There were books about famous museums and famous statues. This led to architecture and then archaeology. My head was beginning to burst with all the books on these subjects. I had to go downstairs and see what was there.