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I’m not entirely sure whether I expected to find the conduit to the new world or the parallel universe that I was looking for. All the places I’d searched were pretty tame and totally expected – a deserted old cottage in a wood, a cave in a disused quarry, an old warehouse that smelt of fish even though it was nowhere near the sea. They all failed to produce anything. Not even that sense of prickling at the back of the neck when you think you might be getting close to something promising.

How long did I search? Days? Weeks? Months? Certainly not years. All that pointless wasted time. Promising everything and achieving nothing. And when the opportunity did come, it came of course from a totally unexpected source, and much nearer to home. In fact, it came inside my home. How weird was that. The conduit I had wasted time looking for was right there, near me, all the time.

In a book.

Admittedly, it was a book I had not seen on the shelf before. It was old, the lettering was missing off the spine and as I pulled it from between its close neighbours it emitted a cloud of dust. Where had it come from? Or had it always been there?

I was almost frightened to open it. I knew you see. I knew. This was what I had been looking for. All I had to do was open this ancient tome, and I would be instantaneously elsewhere. Who knows where?

I had to do it of course. There was no turning back. Would I be able to return to my own world, my own universe, once I had taken this step? Your guess is as good as mine.

I sat down in my favourite chair. The book was in my hands. I opened it.

308 words in 10 minutes at 09:52 PM on Sep 30, 2017

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