Raider of the Lost Bookshelf by Shamel Mujtaba


He could not believe his ears. He could not believe that this was actually happening. No, it should not be, it was a sheer impossibility. But then again, it was. “If you don’t cook dinner today, I’m calling my mother here!” his wife had shouted to him after hearing him complain about her cooking. The words hit him like torrential downpour, but not of delicate water, no, of violent bullets.

Because he didn’t know how to cook.

All of a sudden he found himself rummaging in every bookshelf, crack and crevice in his house. His bookworm of a wife must have a cookbook stashed somewhere, right? If it was, It was hidden devilishly well. “where is it-where is it-Where is it” repeated rapidly in his head, and he began to lick his lips maliciously whenever he thought it was near. But it never was. He needed a new plan.

“Call the FBI, call the avengers!” were his best ones so far.

He needed a newer plan.

He now found himself digging for clues for the forsaken cookbook in his wife’s diary.

This just got personal.

“Its not here!” he told himself, ”just some garbage  on the possible location of a three-hundred year old time-capsule, well  I don’t need possibles!” Then there it was.

“I decided to put my one-and-only cookbook on the old bookshelf in the basement, to scare him away.”

This was followed by a colon and a close-bracket.

“Oh I don’t think so, Missy!” ,He whispered to himself.

He found himself gliding downstairs past his confused wife and opening the basement door with his head in excitement. And lo! There it was. Lying majestically on the top shelf of the rickety bookshelf, the dusty torn cookbook lied, waiting to be discovered by the adventurous traveler in seek of fortune. But how to reach it?

In his desperate state, he neglected the need of a flashlight and climbed the decaying bookshelf, despite it making more than enough sounds and groans of despair.

“Yes!”, he exclaimed when he finally reached the summit of Everest, and shook the battered book in triumph, resulting in its remaining cover falling.

Then the bookshelf fell on him. Just like Indiana jones and raiders of the lost ark.

He ran upstairs in a dusty injured heap. He was running out of time. Best of all, he could hear “The Final Countdown!” playing in his head over and over again.

After hitting several walls face-first, popping his nose open like a soda-can, he finally reached his safehouse-the kitchen. “At last, salvation!” he shouted to himself. Then he opened the French cookbook.

“Oh no…”

About froebelianwriters

I am an English Language teacher teaching O'Levels Edexcel and CIE A Levels at Froebel's International School, Islamabad. I am also working as a Subject Specialist Literacy consultant for the same school. Writing and reading has always been a passion and I try my utmost to instill these habits and hobbies in my students as well. I can be reached/contacted at or 03365287335 Happy reading!

Comments are closed.