(A new WIP. © Robin D. Ashe 2017)
Órfhlaith used the water closet. It was efficient and clean. The soap was in a bottle on the sink. She drank water from her clean hands, then immediately wished for food.
Food was a conjuring beyond her powers at the moment. As the big room grew warmer, she smelled sweet scents and meat from a white box in the corner. She opened it. Cold rushed out, dissipated, and then she saw bread, meat in a container, little white bowls with fruit and yogurt written on them, and a bottle with a paper label that read Excite Water. The liquid was pink. She turned the lid until it fell off and rolled across the floor, then sniffed the liquid. Wine.
There were forks, spoons, and knives wrapped in something clear on top of the white box. She broke the instruments in one before she realized how to open the package. The room was warm. She had food and drink and proper facilities, and she was in a building lined with shelves of books.
She used a flimsy knife to force her way into a yogurt bowl, then ate up all the white milky stuff and berries. She had a sip of wine. She felt much better. She took the blanket—a thing made from itchy yarn that didn’t smell like wool—wrapped it around her shoulders, and went walking the library with the light hidden in her fist. Every room seemed to be a small library. She found the room where the globe lived and glanced over titles with her head cocked to the side until she found a set of big books with black bindings and gold writing. She knew what encyclopedias were. They many, so very many, in the castle library.
She carried the first five back to the improvised bedchamber, arranged the pillows, ate another yogurt, and propped herself up on the couch with the itchy blanket over her knees and the bottle of wine in her hand, and she read the first book and most of the second before the nearly-empty bottle slipped out of her hand, her head fell back, and she started to snore.