Working the Oracle

Submitted into Contest #152 in response to: Set your story in an oracle or a fortune teller’s parlor.... view prompt

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Fantasy Crime Horror

This story contains sensitive content

The following work has brief segments of violence, gore and uses mature language

This story I’m about to blab is short, sweet, and fucking strange. Who am I you ask? Nobody, yeah that's right if the creeps know I told you, my name would be mud anyway. 

In the short time I spent working for Zelda’s Fortune Teller Emporium, I learned firsthand what happens to you if you try pulling a fast one on God. Just try working over any of his oracles and things get ugly fast. 

When Cedric pushed me towards the front door I was shaking in my boots. Good thing the rookie cop didn’t notice. I can still feel his finger poking my spine as he said, “ I’m the one with the Midas touch man, and I ain’t talking to a pig at the door Maverick. You do it. They probably want to know if we saw anything. God damn, I’m the pusher man, hah! Dude, just tell ‘em you is blind and didn’t see a thing”.

When I answered the welcoming red front door with the name, “Zelda’s Fortune Teller Emporium’ written across the top I saw the rookie officers' eyes lighten up as she scanned the place from the ‘Black Lives Matter’ poster in the front window to the sticker stating Zelda’s was a member of the LGBTQ business owners association and it relaxed me a bit. 

She was concerned yet kindly asked, “Did you see or hear the hit and run that took place in front of this establishment just about an hour ago?”

I looked straight into her eyes and replied a giant lie, “Oh no I didn’t see a thing. Actually I didn’t hear anything either because, I crank the music up when I’m cleaning up.” 

She thanked me and then left as I ran to the bathroom to puke. The truth of the matter is as I did see that poor old woman fly in the air after nearly being torn in half by those squealing tires on that Black Escalade. I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw a bitch jump out of the vehicle and grab the belongings of the victim. But what played on my conscience the most was when I ran out to see if I could help, I found I knew this dying old woman and so did Cedric. We both grew up around here.

Damn, as children, Mrs. Gomez would give us candy and hugs when no one else would. She didn’t deserve to die like that and I knew it. If anyone should have sprouted wings it was her. She should be remembered as a maker of miracles for Cedric anyway. 

Cedric purchased his beloved Emporium from Mrs. Gomez for only twenty grand cash. Of course, it was at the expense of Mrs. Gomez; Ximena Gomez, a mental 92-year-old. Unbelievably, Cedric talked her into selling her small cottage for pennies on the dollar. Cedric was thrilled as the structure sat near the 6th Ave viaduct and Federal Blvd. Zelda’s Fortune Teller Emporium was born when Cedric figured he could run a legal business on the front side while pushing heroin from the back. 

People in the neighborhood liked Ximena so much that they immediately started placing flowers on the curb where she died. 

“Jesus H Christ, the old broad just had to meet her maker in front of my Emporium. What? Hit by a reckless driver who took off just leaving the poor old girl in a bloody lump in the middle of the road. God damn it, I don’t need that kind of publicity!” Cedric screamed! Then throwing a conniption he began screaming in his Zelda's voice,  “People are saying they found pieces of the rotting corpse and fragments of what was left of her walker but nothing else. No purse? No money? The old bat carried around my 20 grand and flashed it every chance she had but now not a dime, well shit”. 

I bet God heard it, I know I did.

Zelda wasn’t an oracle, not even close. An evil master of lies would be more like it.-

I remember when Cedric Fly was just a corner drug dealer in n Denver’s infamous Westside. It had been on the skids for a long time and Cedric wanted to take advantage of the situation; so he got this great idea to con poor people down in the dumps. They would be willing to believe anything if you say it slick enough. My old pal Cedric had a silver tongue alright and he needed it for his new fentanyl deals. 

I can hear him now, “This shit will replace all the standard opioids before you know it.” 

Before I knew it half the hood was addicted.

A couple of weeks later is when the strange shitshow hit the fan. it was hot July when Cedric transformed into Zelda by donning her red curly wig and best silk dress and sat unknowingly across from a new customer, Laticia Alvarez Lopez. 

Oh shit, I thought, This was the bitch I saw jump out of the vehicle to grab Ximena’s bag, but it was too late to tell Zelda. 

Zelda began with the typical spiel, “Just relax, breathe deep, Zelda knows all.” 

Probably not the thing to say to someone looking for witnesses. 

Now, get real, If Zelda was capable of reading someone’s secrets she should have known that sitting across from her was a petty thief and drug runner from Jaurez Mexico.

-Turns out that bitch knew the rest of the story as she had the dead old woman's bag in one hand and a loaded Glock in her waistband. She had been sent back to Colorado by the Santiago Cartell. Their motto was to leave no stone unturned and Zelda along with the dead Ximena just happened to be a couple of stones unturned. 

It was pulp fiction between the liar and the thief. I snuck away to claim a protected view from the john. I could see Zelda put her hand under the table searching for the Wild West revolver we strung under it. I’m sure she sensed danger as she aimed at the bitches crotch.

I thought Laticia would start talking smack before she shot Zelda but instead, she said, “I know that you watched me from your window that night. I know because Jesus told me you did.”

Both Zelda and I were amazed when she opened Ximenas's bag, dumped out the money, and reached for the silver crucifix that was neatly stored in an antique case that fell on top of the bills. She pulled the small ornate crucifix out and layed it before Zelda. “Tell me how this works! Tell me how this is alive.” she pleaded.

Believe me or not, I saw it with my own eyes,- a silver Jesus layed on the table nailed to his silver cross with eyes open looking at the duo of cons and then at me hiding in the bathroom pleading for my intervention that would not occur. There was blood dripping from under its small crown of thorns and its wounds were swollen. I turned my head agonizing for the small thing. 

Then Laticia spoke as if she truly believes that Zelda has mystical powers. She started using Zelda as some sort of a priestess by confessing she stole the small crucifix from the old woman that she killed. I hate her for making me relive that night describing in detail the way Ximena died and how her eyes grew larger when she couldn't breathe just like the crucifix. But now the strange thing has eyes that glow a red the same color as the old woman’s blood.  

She spoke in a warning yet threatening major, “It kills! Before it spoke to me, I let my brother's four-year-old son play with it, and he choked to death while I ran into 7-11 for a dirty pack of smokes. Now my brother has threatened to kill me and I seek revenge!”

Then she horrifyingly continued, “Jesus had grown to be the same size as my nephew. Laying over the dead child it had eyes that followed me and a gurgling mouth that told me where to find you.” 

But, I could tell Zelda still saw the charmed Jesus no different; only a couple of inches long with no glowing eyes or gurgling. Zelda must have been incapable of seeing. 

She said, “Look I read fortunes and I’m far from a psychoanalyst so I have no idea what you’re looking at.” then salivating so hard he had to lick his lips I heard Zelda speak as Cedric and say, “But bitch, I like the fact you brought back my stash and that makes me like you.” 

Just then I looked at the crucifix as did Laticia to see it had grown from an inch to nearly a foot in length. Its mouth and teeth became clear as it spoke, “I thirst.” Licking its dried lips it turned to me and said,” I forgive you for the misfortune that is about to occur.” I felt redemption as I closed my eyes as tears poured and heard the fire of both the Glock from her belt and the Magnum from under the table. Miraculously both had missed which started a wrestling match on the floor ending over unstable floor boards which looked as if they ate up both.

Luckily Cedric climbed out unscathed telling me to run as he took care of the bitch. But first, he grabbed his cash and then threw the crucifix into the cellar. I noticed how it was only about 2 inches big and had no life to it at all. 

-Knowing that Laticia lived incognito because of the Cartell, Cedric agreed to run with me and tell the police how this crazy woman killed an old woman and then blamed it on a silver crucifix. 

When the police arrive at Zelda's they only find a dead bitch with a large wall-type crucifix coming out of her chest. -Laticia had been stabbed and they quickly arrested Cedric. They payed no attention to me at all. 

When Cedric looked back from the police car he saw his beloved emporium on fire. His eyes were large and afraid as if he was seeing a life-size christlike figure- with glowing red eyes. Perhaps it is standing beside the flames holding a small innocent boy and the broken body of kindly Ximena Gomez. I don’t know, I saw nothing.

June 30, 2022 16:35

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1 comment

Gary Wells
17:48 Jul 07, 2022

Cool story! Just want to suggest that you may want to have an editor review it to clean it up.


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