Short Story: Inspiration

The library of lives sighed around them as they walked between the shelves. They were following the tail flick of the cat that had brought them here. Whenever they felt lost or at the very least uncertain if where to go next, they would see the cat, pale in the shadows of the books down a particular passage, or sense the speed of his darting from place to place.

They had searched through dreams, first for their guide, and then for each other, determined to find the common inspiration for the visions that pulled them. In the waking world they had compared notes and constructed scenarios to ponder in those shifting grey moments before the veil of sleep claimed them.

The cat had been the first clue, pale as bone rather than the dark shiver of motion they had been expecting. It had regarded each of them as they slept in their beds, and the memory of it had been singular enough to stay with them on the other side of the dawn.

They made a pact to recall and follow where that cat led them. Past the deserts of Lost Nahend, and across the ruby-strewn obsidian plain below the Sundered Peak, their guide had dared them to continue.

Eager, their entwined dreams had brought them to the libraries that never were, and the various annexes that threatened to derail their search. They saw other dreamers from time to time in those crooked corridors, entranced by the volumes they had only ever planned, or contemplating the poetry they had never dared.

The white cat led them past those traps, and out into a sunlit room with bare floorboards and a sunny view obscured by the grime of autumns been and gone.

They cautiously explored the blank journals on which their guide had come to perch, but saw no titles on the spines. The cat yawned and began to groom itself as they looked around. They had been searching for the inspiration that drove them and sparked their work. Finding no answers in the waking world, they had turned to oneiromancy, sure that such an ephemeral goal could best be lifted from the skein of dreams.

They stood there in that plain room, surrounded by unmarked pages with no view visible through the windows and then realised the one thing that could inspire them to continue, to create, to grow and to explore their worlds.

They stood there and looked to each other, and laughed until they woke – separate and yet united at last.

About Tim Maidment

Writer, House Husband, Library Person, Raconteur, Poly, Queer and Bon Vivant. You were expecting something simple?
This entry was posted in Fiction, short story, writing and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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