Hollywood excelled at creating an atmosphere. If it wrote Egypt, 1933 on a scene with overburdened and growling camels, a souq against rectangular flat-roofed buildings the color of the Sahara, and swarthy vendors in long white robes crying, "Yalla, yalla"
with a palatalized 'l'
you couldn't help believing it was Egypt, 1933.
And if the magician sage
out of a blockbuster fantasy flick looked like the man Anne and Peter faced in the room behind the bookstore, he'd fit right in.
Peter tried not to seem boorish, sweeping his eyes from the beard—nearly a span long, pearly white, and well trimmed—to the linen shirt under the long retro coat. The nose was slightly aquiline; the black shoes, as glossy as those of any Arab businessman. However, all similes took a break when Peter looked into those eyes. They were like embers: black, and yet radiating warm-colored energy, which scanned Peter deeper than any NMR. Their gaze made him feel it read straight into his brain.
The magician sensed Peter's astonishment, smiled
probably enjoying what he's reading in my mind,
and stepped forward, reaching out. Turned out he had a name, too. "Seymour King. That's why it says Books & Knowledge on the front."
Peter considered that for a nanosecond.
Knowledge, KnowING, KING.
Seymour King ... Stephen King.
Once, he'd come across a short book by Stephen King: On Writing, or something like that. He never bothered to memorize the original title, because he liked the one he came up with: How I Transformed from Stephen King to King Stephen. Not that King would use it himself; it was too immodest.
Don't get distracted.
"Peter Barton. King's derived from 'one who knows.'"
"Attaboy! Seymour is the easy part. Our dearest Ann seems to have made no mistake about you."
"I have a few—"
"Questions? Of course you do. Only fools don't. Please, let's sit down. Will our dearest Ann be so kind to make tea for everyone?" Seymour smiled gently, probably trying to break the ice.
Or his is a generally gentle nature?
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