Sitting inside Van Pelt

The clicking of the computer keys, sometimes soft, always constant.

A cough here, a cough there. Stifled.

The distant murmur of the librarians talking, books being stamped and checked out.

The “ding” of the elevators. “Ding” –get in. “Ding” –get out.

The sound of pages being turned. Whoosh.

Ding, ding.

Click, click, click, click.

Trees blow noiselessly on the other side of the window.

A phone vibrates on a desk. Bzzz.

Click, click, ding, whoosh, click.

Footsteps muffled by the carpet floor. Now audible, as they walk across a hard part of the floor. Tap, tap, tap.

Now silent.

Chairs creak as people lean back. Creak. Cree-ee-aak. Cree…ak.

A book is closed emphatically. BANG. Rustling of paper, of pens, of putting the book away, taking a notebook out.

Whoosh. Ding. Click, click, bzzz, creak. Creee… ding, ding… eaaak, click. Click, click, click. Click, clickclick click click click.

Cough, cough.

A pen is clicked, once, twice.

A burst of noise, as a group of students walks in, the lively conversation temporarily drowning out everything else.
They leave.

A sigh.

A guffaw.

“What needs to happen is we need to go over this section with Sam and—wait, what are you doing for Fall Break?”

Doors are opened, doors are closed, zippers are unzipped and then zipped back up.

An echo of footsteps making their way to the exit.


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