Sunday, April 04, 2010

A Place to Belong

Kevin had always wanted to work in a bookshop, it was his dream job. He'd keep the stock up to date, entertain reps from the publishing houses, organise author signings and make up the displays that brought the public flocking to the till. He'd spend his lunchtimes curled up with promotional copies of all the latest releases and be the envy of the Happy Readers Club.

Okay, so he got the night shift where the store was closed and his job was to check the stock and re-file all the books the public had mis-shelved. There was so much work to do that he didn't have time for a lunch break and by the time his shift ended he was so tired he couldn't remember going home before he was back again. He never got to read more than the title, author and ISBN number and couldn't remember the last time he'd been to a Happy Readers meeting.

They remembered him, though.

On the first anniversary of his death the meeting broke up ten minutes early to open a bottle of wine and toast his memory. "To Kevin," they said. "Wherever he is, he'll have found a bookshop."

Kevin re-shelved an Oxford Press first edition of the Bible, disgusted at the way some customers treated the books. This one, for example, had a long-fingered handprint burned into the cover.

6 comments:

DJ Kirkby said...

They ended the meeting a whole ten minutes early? That's a bit excessive isn't it?

aims said...

It used to be my dream too - to own a bookstore. I wanted to make it a bookstore cafe - serving cakes and homemade sweetness so one could buy a book and sit and have a cuppa and do a little reading - dropping chocolate crumbs on their new book. Never on one not purchased first!!

I'll keep it a dream though after this thank you.

Sunny said...

I used to work at a bookshop. Your description is so true-to-life. Thank you for the memories :)

Leatherdykeuk said...

Thank you all. I never did work in a bookshop. I'm glad, really, I'd hate to see the returns pulped.

stephanie said...

I feel there are possible adventures left for Kevin, and it's a pity the Happy Readers will never know of them.

Leatherdykeuk said...

he has a destiny as a minor character.