Silence in the Library by Isabelle

She caught sight of him in the doorway, leaning against the frame, hardly more than a silhouette in the quickly darkening twilight. “What are you doing here?” she asked, purposely keeping her attention on the archive machine, gathering the Professor’s notes and diagrams and imprinting them on the data discs for storage.

“I forgot my lesson plan,” he said in that rumbling voice that made her stomach tighten.

“Did you?” She tried to hide her pleased smile. “I was under the impression you carried the chip tucked safely away in the drive storage beneath your wrist dock.”

He straightened and stepped in further, walking into the late evening light that streamed through the windows. His lips curved just slightly, but his brown eyes shined with untold mischief. “Ah,” he said slowly, his gaze fixed on hers, “there it is.”

“What are you really doing here?” she finally said, shutting off the archive machine and causing the virtual blackboard to disappear. He was behind her before she had the chance to turn around. His strong arms wrapped around her waist. He dug his face into the crook of her neck and kissed her tenderly, so that every nerve shivered in response.

“You shouldn’t be here,” she warned, spinning in his arms, so that they were face to face, the tips of their noses touching.

“Class is over. Everyone has left for the night,” he grinned, looking at her as though what she said made absolutely no logical sense, “Who’s going to say something? The janitors? Last I checked they’re programmed to clean and stay out of our way.”

“If my parents found out…”

He frowned. A deep line formed between his brows. “You’re an adult. We’re not doing anything wrong.”

“Thats not what I’m saying.”

“Then what are you saying? Because it sounds like you’re ashamed of me. Of us.”

She cupped his cheeks and brought his face closer. “Daddy’s put in a lot of money to get me where I am now. I’ve studied and fought my way through 356 other candidates to make it to the top. In just a few months’ time I’ll be certified to run the E.I.E.S. and I’ll have access to information that not even the President knows. So you can understand why my father is so anxious about our involvement. He just wants what’s best for me. You can’t fault him for that.”

“What if I’m what’s best for you?” The look in his eyes promised things she wasn’t ready for.

She chuckled nervously. “You? You’re a distraction. A very time consuming distraction.” She ran her hands down his shoulders, his arms. “I have plans you know. Goals.”

“Yeah?”

“Yeah. I can’t become an Oracle until I put in at least ten years as a Chancellor at E.I.E.S. I have a lot of learning left to do.”

“An Oracle?” he asked, his shoulders tensing, his smile fading. “Lucrative aspirations.”

“Well, a girl’s gotta dream big.”

“What ever happened to books? To libraries? Earth’s Information Exchange System, the Oracle Process– mankind is thirsting for knowledge that doesn’t belong to them. We aren’t meant to know the future, Pythia, just as we aren’t destined to repeat our pasts.”

“Spoken like a true Professor.”

“I’m serious. Don’t you worry about what you’ll see? Don’t you worry that you won’t be you when you’re upgraded?”
“I’ll be the most powerful being on our planet. I’ll know all of space and time, as was intended. All requests would go through me. Do you know what that could mean? The end of war, the end of famine as we know it. How could that ever be a bad thing?”
He ran his fingers through the hair drawn over her shoulder and sighed. It was no use. She was too far gone. Even if he warned her now, she would only accuse him of jealousy, or traditionalism, of being close-minded.
She never took into account the well-recorded lifespan of an Oracle, an eternity of disintegration as the brain shut down, too full, too busy, to allow the body to function. Or the creeping madness that sent them into violent acts of self-mutilation.
Because she knew these things and didn’t care.
And so he enjoyed what was left of her now and sat in silence, determined to say nothing at all.
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About Isabelle

Isabelle is a multi-published author who dabbles in 1950s romance, speculative science fiction, and more recently fantasy and YA. A twenty something dreamer who loves chocolate, romance novels, and heart wrenching movies, Isabelle is most comfortable on stage behind a microphone belting out her favorite karaoke tunes, or curled up in bed with a book and a cup of cocoa on a rainy night. View all posts by Isabelle

2 responses to “Silence in the Library by Isabelle

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