||[Feb. 28th, 2008|02:10 am]
Who: Jonathan Crane (and open!)
What: Finds someplace New.
It didn't happen. This sort of thing simply did not happen and, even if it did, it would not happen to him. Jonathan refused to believe it. Centophobia, he told himself. The fear of newness. Or was it neophobia? Deep wrinkles set into his brow. His palms were sweaty and if anyone decided to come through the door behind him, just then, they surely would have bowled him over.
He could picture exactly where the book, the one with all the answers, was sitting: atop the table tucked furthest into the back corner of the the building. The table no one noticed, his table. The book - a dictionary, really, of phobias, which he had studied for at least an hour, every day this week, so far - was open to the G chapter, today. Somewhere between gerontophobia (old people) and geumaphobia (taste), he noticed a few less than friendly eyes turn on him. Griggs and his gang, not satisfied with what they already accomplished on the playground during school, sought him out successfully. Which was almost funny, Jonathan noted, because the four of them must have suffered from severe bibliophobia. Being in the library must have scared them silly. For a split second, that was a good feeling. A very good one. He even grinned.
But if he let that distract him, they would surround him and that would, in turn, lead to a very Bad feeling. He gave a superficial glance to the page he was reading, only long enough to seem like he hadn't noticed what was coming his way. Heart pounding, he looked up once more and met Bo Griggs's eyes. Jonathan was far too skinny, far too unhealthy and accident-prone to be considered athletic, but on instinct, he ran. And was persued. Fortunately, he knew the stacks better than any kid in town and ditched them in Fiction.
That didn't slow him down, however. If he stopped now, those boys would sniff him out and give him what they thought he had coming. And he couldn't go home to his mother like that. Not again, not after Tuesday. If breaking the rules meant keeping her from being sad again, then through the Staff Only door he would go. So, he did.
He couldn't recall finding any names for the fear of doors or doors that led to unfamiliar hallways (or hallways, by themselves), but if there was a name for the fear of colour (chromophobia), then there ought to be one for everything. The new hall looked nothing like the library and actually rather like something out of his father's hospital (there was a name for that one, he knew it. If he'd only remembered to bring the book). Only more...hospitable. (He giggled to himself. How could two words sound so much alike and mean something so different?) Here, the walls and scattered doors didn't extend forever like some episode of The Twilight Zone; there was definitely an end in sight.
Jonathan turned back towards the door he had come through. Should he risk it? When he tried the handle (different from the one he turned on its opposite side), the door swung open to reveal a small, dark, empty closet space. But when he stepped in, he could hear voices. From the library, he was sure of it. Thundering footsteps, followed by the angry curses of what could easily be a small pack of children.
"Where'd that sunufffa bitch go?"
"Shit on it, I'm going in. He's pro'lly right..."
That was enough. Jonathan gave the door his hardest shove, made an about-face, and sprinted down the hall, willing to take his chances with whatever waited for him around the corner. There had to be another way out.