The Mysterious Girl in the Library


Patience is a rare fruit.

A Short Story

Once upon a time, not so long ago, there was a girl studying literature at the university. The students were required to read many books: novels, dramas, collections of poems or short stories. Some students made notes in pencil directly in the books they borrowed in the university library. It was against the rules, but they did it anyway.

The girl kept reading the books with great diligence and never wrote anything in them. Once she borrowed a book and when she started reading it at home, she discovered that there were many notes in pencil on individual pages. It was a thick book. She was reading it for two months. And all the time she was afraid of something that really happened, when she brought the book back to the library.

The librarian looked through the book and she said angrily to the girl:

“You wrote in the book!”

The girl protested:

“I did not. The notes were there, when you gave me the book. I noticed it at home.”

The librarian was very sure of herself:

“That is not possible I’m afraid. We look through every book.”

The girl did not want to accuse the librarian of having failed to look through this book. She knew nothing better to say in her defense than repeating that she had not made the notes. Yet the librarian did not believe her.

The girl took the book back and said: “O.K. If you believe I made the notes, I will delete them. Now. Can I borrow a rubber please?”

The librarian, who still had a heart made of stone, replied: “I am not lending you a rubber.”

Another student who was sitting behind a desk nearby and had overheard this conversation was kind enough to lend the girl a rubber. The girl sat down behind a desk right next to this student and started rubbing off the notes.

The librarian was shocked but recovered to her cold-hearted attitude quite swiftly: “You must do it carefully. You could tear the paper.”

The girl, who was already careful, said in a very patient tone: “Yes, I will be careful.”

The librarian kept nagging: “And where are you going to put the remains of the rubber? I hope you are not going to sweep them to the floor.”

The girl kept the patience: “I will throw them into the dustbin.”

At that point the librarian ran out of ideas of what to say to the girl that behaved in a most unusual pattern. Yet she remained nervous till the girl finished her job, returned the book and went home.

The girl was never accused of having made notes in a book again.

Take care,
Helena Smole, author of Balancing the Beast, a book offering a bright view of schizoaffective disorder ˗ bipolar or manic-depressive type

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