Remember when you were a kid and inanimate objects had feelings and thoughts? Stuffed animals, toys, and even things like crayons and books?
I remember when I was young, looking at my bookshelf and wondering what stories the books told each other when I wasn’t around. Stuck together like that, how else would books pass the time?
At first, their stories would be obvious—they’d tell the stories on their own pages, of course.
But after that? What happened when a book got bored with its own story and the stories of the two books on either side?
To my mind, it stood to reason that they would start passing each other’s stories up and down the shelf.
But what then? Like a game of telephone, what happened when stories were filtered through stories? Would Robin Hood stumble into Narnia?
Would the Tin Woodsman, Scarecrow, and the Cowardly Lion join Bilbo Baggins on his quest? Could Superman and Jim Hawkins fall through *A Wrinkle in Time* to match wits with Professor Moriarty?
It’s a fond childhood memory, imagining the endless permutations on my bookshelf.
Or I think it is. It’s entirely possible the memory isn’t even mine. These days, I seem to remember other things. Memories I’m not as fond of. Memories where I’m torturing someone or being tortured.
Murdering or being murdered. Stalking or stalked, raping or raped.
After all these years, I’m no longer sure which memories are my own and which ones I’ve heard so many times that they’ve soaked into me.
But I can tell you this:
When you die, be careful whom you’re buried near.