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Visiting my school

On the 11th of June, I took a short stroll to my school to visit the library. My sister, Anaia, my mother and I walked along the familiar road like we had so many times in the past, but I don't remember ever having been so excited about a trip to the school, much less to the library! We waited outside the main entrance, and soon the librarian, Dr. Luckhurst, came to greet us. Anaia and my mother were not allowed to come in due to the strict measures in place to keep the school safe.

Dr Luckhurst and I made our way in, and in about half a minute, we were in the magnificent library I had missed so much over the lockdown. There was everything just as it had been when I had left it last, somewhere in February or March. The staircases ascending upstairs, the beanbags next to the magazine rack, and of course the maze of bookshelves looming high over me. I felt there was something missing though, and it was only later, when I had exited the library when I knew the missing piece of the Hall school jigsaw: where was the busy life of its boys?

I held the sixth book of Harry Potter in my hand - my sister had been reading the series - and Dr Luckhurst told me to place it in a small box labelled quarantine books - the only aspect of the library that felt markedly different. I put it in there, and as I did she explained that the school quarantined the books for 3 days until they were safe, and then returned them to the shelves where they belonged. She told me my mother had said I'd been reading Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson, and I replied yes, and that I had been enjoying the book a lot.

She turned round a corner and instantly I recognized the Roman Mysteries series by Caroline Lewis. I asked if I could borrow a couple of those books, and she allowed me to. I spotted A Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket on a lower-down shelf, and politely asked if I could borrow a couple for my sister. She told me I could go right on ahead.

It was then that she remembered about Treasure Island. "Say, have you read Moonfleet?", she asked me. I replied that I hadn't, so she recommended it to me. She said it was very similar to the style of Treasure Island, but was a lot darker and more complicated. I read the blurb, and saw she was right. She said maybe my mother could read it to me; I decided to borrow it, as it sounded intriguing.

She handed the books over to me, told me that her hands were clean, and then led the way out. I remember walking the last few steps of the building, thinking that somehow this visit to the library was more meaningful than all the countless other times I'd visited before; this one I would remember.

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