“She seemed to be inside something, inside herself, as if all that beauty had been made in her as this big hall full of chandeliers and marble fireplaces—beautiful but empty.
Like she’d been dropped down in the middle of it and had spent too many years wandering around in it, her footsteps just echoing inside herself, wondering if anyone else was there, wondering how she’d got there, telling herself that if she had to be alone in there, at least she had interesting things to look at.
Only she didn’t want to be alone in there, and since she was never going to find her way out, someone would have to find his way in.
I knew all of that, and it took about ten seconds to figure it out. And it took another ten to figure out that I wanted to be the one to push open those heavy doors and wander those empty halls calling her name until I found her. But how do you do that when you aren’t really in a great hall but only a bookstore, and you don’t even know her name…?”