Story Extract: Finding Treasure Island
Kay was never quite certain how the marmalade cat had got in. It might have oozed through the triangular hole in the dusty window pane, but its solid, massive body looked too large and too dignified for such sinuous behaviour.
Now it crouched, its eyes gleaming topazes, below the end of the mountain range of books along the window ledge. It was kneading the faded carpet, with glinting claws, each delicately curved like the polished blade of a rapier, glimpsed then sheathed in the heavy, padded paws. She never saw it spring.
Now it was perambulating along the line of volumes, very stately and imperturbable, picking its way fastidiously up and down through the dust of years, which had fallen like snow on the bulky leather tomes.
Now it hesitated, searching for a landing place in the muddle of papers and boxes, its sparkling jewel eyes throwing her a brief, contemptuous glance before it leapt, powerful paws thrusting the last of the books back along the shelf. There was a tremor along the line of books, and with a sense of powerlessness, Kay watched as the mountain range crumbled into a tumultuous landslide.
The thunderous noise was still reverberating when the last stone had settled. The dust still hung suspended above the ancient volumes, their rugged leather covers bound with brass corners like chests from a pirate’s hoard, guarding the treasure within.
Cautiously, as if she were a thief, Kay reached out and touched one of the precious books. Her soft fingertips stroked the hard, grained leather, cracking and flaking with age. She looked at the title stamped on the front cover: Treasure Island. Reverently, she smoothed the gold, embossed letters, dulled with the patina of countless fingers. Then, sliding her small hands carefully underneath, she lifted the book and began her adventure.