The same people came into the library every week, more or less. Cosima knew all of the regulars, but not a single one of them knew about her. She wasn't as bothered by it as she had at the start, and had long ago stopped waving her arms around and shouting at the top of her lungs to try and get people to notice her; all it did was tire her out, and she got nothing in return. She even had her own little routine set up. She watched over the kids in the children's section in the morning until their parents swept them away, then sat next to old lady Marge while she read the newspaper and waited for her husband George, then around dinner time went out to the park.
Once she'd stopped someone's dog from running into the street when they tugged their leash out of their owner's hands. It hadn't been difficult (animals had always been more sensitive to her), and when she'd gotten close enough to the little thing it had started barking it's head off while Cosima stood in front of it, rolling her eyes with her arms crossed over her chest. Sometimes at night she put away the books still left out on carts to be returned until moving physical items around was too much effort.
The library was quieter than usual. Cosima settled next to Marge and glanced at the news articles. Nothing caught her interest, not that that was unusual. If something terrible like a shooting happened, Cosima would know about it before any news network did. A sudden influx of souls tended to throw everything into chaos for a couple days. Marge skipped past politics and science and medicine to read the funnies. Cosima sighed.
"You know, sometimes I wish you'd read the entire paper," she said, more to herself than Marge. "You're a slow reader. Then at least I could know what's going on without needed to spend energy moving things." George came to collect her not long after, with a smile and a bag from the shop down the road. Marge neatly folded the paper just as Cosima was in the middle of reading a comic strip, and tucked it into her purse. Cosima watched them leave, and after a moment, rose to follow.
As happy as she was when people weren't dropping things, or almost walking into oncoming traffic, days when nothing happened were boring. She could only get away with so much in broad daylight without causing a scene. Cosima stood off to the side of the stairs and watched George and Marge until they rounded the corner out of sight, and waited for a break in pedestrian traffic before walking down the block and across the street to the park.
A dog barked when she got too close, startling its owner, who looked through Cosima several times before figuring it was a squirrel and looking back at their phone. Cosima pulled a face at the dog, and moved away until she was far enough that it stopped yelping at her.
"Nice day we're having," she said to no one in particular. "Shame I can't feel it. Bet that sunlight is nice and warm." She hugged herself until the ache in her chest subsided, then sat on the ground under her tree to watch out for anyone needing help. She'd spent a fair bit of time studying under it before; before the hospital, before she'd been confined to her room and surrounded by machines with a doctor no more than a shout away. Even after so long, something about it still felt warm, even though it she sat in its shade, shielded from sunlight she could no longer feel.
Monday shouldn't have been any different from every Monday Cosima had spent in the library over the past three years. Nothing about it felt different when the librarians (Betty and Joan) arrived in the morning, or when a small group of children and their parents came in soon after. Marge still stopped in, chatted with Joan, then settled on her bench. Cosima still sat next to her, and still lamented over not being able to read the whole thing. George still picked her up. She was about to leave, thinking a change of scenery might brighten her day, when someone she didn't know or even vaguely recognize stepped through the doors. A student, by the looks of her, laden down with a bag that seemed heavy, and the same tired expression that most college kids tended to have.
And she was pretty. Cosima stared, then shuddered when a man walked through her, and left the doors to trail after the mysterious blonde. She made a beeline for the science books, and excitement filled Cosima to the brim. No one ever went to the science section. Cosima passed through a book cart that got in her way, still following. Despite never having been there before, the woman seemed to know exactly what she was looking for, and after a few minutes pulled several books off the shelves and took her burden to one of the quiet tables in the back corner, far from the noise of the front desk and the children's section. Cosima stood behind her shoulder, careful not to touch her, and looked at the books; microbiology, immune system, antibiotics...
"You going to be a doctor?" Cosima asked, although she'd long since stopped expecting any kind of response. "Cool. I was going to be a doctor. Sort of." The blonde pulled a notebook from her bag and cracked one of the books open, skimming the table of contents before flipping through to the page she needed. Cosima shoved her hands into her pockets. God, she'd missed science, and the fact that the woman was absolutely gorgeous was certainly a plus.
She could have spent the entire day (or forever, literally) watching her read, and as excited as she was to learn about the new theories and research that had cropped up since she'd been in school, she was patient as ever while Science Girl took notes. Her handwriting was adorable, Cosima noted absently, tilting her head to the side in consideration as the blonde jotted something down in a neat scrawl.
It was too soon when Science Girl packed up her things, and carefully placed her books back in their proper places on the shelf. Cosima sighed, lingering at the end of the aisle and watching her disappear out of the building. Park for her it was, then, unless she wanted to spend the remaining hours until closing trying to muster up enough energy to open a book and read for herself (which was harder than it sounded; books were heavy, especially science books). Science Girl was already gone when she finally left, into winter air that she couldn't really feel, or smell, lost in the rush of moving bodies. Cosima waited for a clear patch in the traffic at the base of the library stairs, and joined a group at the corner crossing the street.
She was back in the library after lock up, aimlessly wandering about the darkened building. It was so much more peaceful at night, somehow, even though it was quiet during the day. Cosima switched on one of the desk lamps, ignoring how it flickered, and with some effort, moved one of the bean bags from the kids area over to it, then snorted at how ridiculous it would have looked if anyone else had been in there with her. Lights turning themselves on, objects jerking across the floor.
"You need to find something to amuse yourself at night, Cosima," she told herself for the thousandth time since she'd started haunting the place. Settled on the bean bag, though her body didn't dip or mould it in anyway, she closed her eyes. Even if she didn't sleep, she could still spend the night relaxing until the librarians came back in the morning.