"I sense, Dad," thinks Tova, "that you have more than books on your mind as you take me into this store. I dreamed of the enchanted store across the ocean every time you read a new book from it. When you invited me to fly to the UK with you, I thought we would share a wondrous father-daughter moment at this special store and browse it's magical shelves together. My empathy tells me that is not the case. It tells me that you have not brought me to meet your unusual friends either.
“It's so strange. When I see your and Mom's friends, I sometimes can imagine them not dressed how they are, but as wearing clothing like they are in some magical fairy tale. I don't understand why I do that. I guess it's just my weirdness surfacing.
"The statues on the front of this store are so strange. I am surprised, Dad, you entered a store which has such bizarre decorations displayed. I thought you would be worried about what your colleagues in the financial industry would think. I feel I should know these creatures displayed at the entrance — that they are more trustworthy than human beings."
Inside the bookstore, first-grader Stefan sits in a quite nook downstairs, fidgeting with his fairy doll. He combs the doll's hair in the rhythmic fashion that seems to calm his ever wandering, fragmented mind into a single line of contemplative thought. His thoughts are focused on the section of "The Saeshell Book of Time" his mom read last evening. He quietly whispers to the fairy doll in melodious tones, "Soon you will be here. Soon you will visit me, princess; I can tell. What will I say? Will you know that I am the prince? I am just a little boy. How can you know? Do I dare let you know now? I want you to know, but the book says you can't know yet. The book says I must wait. The book is mean. I want my princess to know me now. But if I don't obey the book, I will break time. That would be too scary." His eyes open wide as he begins to frantically move the fairy doll's wings, making them appear to be flying. "She is here. She is here. What will I do? What will I say?"
He clutches his fairy doll tightly and runs up the stairs to the loft, darting into his private reading cube. He ducks under the table, shivering violently enough to make the table rattle slightly. "The princess and her father are here! What shall I do? I must see her!"