It's on the cards.

Submitted into Contest #89 in response to: Write about someone who is always looking toward the future.... view prompt

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Fiction Inspirational

Jenny put the deck of tarot cards on the table. It was the same deck her grandmother had handed in to her on her 16th birthday. The old woman insisted that Jenny had “the gift”, but Jenny could hardly believe her then.  Jenny knew that predicting the future is both tricky and dangerous, but from time to time she could not help giving it a chance. Unable to decipher the random cards that sprang out of the deck at her beck and call, she considered her grandmother’s intuition wishful thinking and threw the deck in the last drawer of her closet, forgetting all about it.

Until now. Four years later, and a day before her 20th birthday, Jenny’s curiosity to unveil what the future holds for her was so intense that she ran directly to her closet. The old ornamental metal box stood there looking at her as she pulled the last drawer. She took it out carefully as if she was in the middle of a sacred ritual. Then, she sat at the table and with slow soft motions opened the metal box, taking out the old colourful deck Jenny was so familiar with.

She scanned with her eyes the pictures, a whole universe of signs and figures “on the course to enlightenment”, her grandmother used to say. She couldn’t help but feel awe at the endless possibilities the future could unfold. What if life is just a stage and people mere puppets on its powerful strings? Or are people the super heroes of a short finite play? Jenny felt puzzled and her head ached.

As if in a trance, she spread the deck on the table. 78 cards were hiding from her, awaiting to be selected and turned. Jenny picked the first card and put it face up on the table. That card was about the past. Judgement, reversed. “the card of doubt and lack of self awareness” Jenny thought. And indeed, that was how she felt: full of doubt, unaware of her true potential, eager to conquer the world but not knowing how exactly this could be achieved. Doubts holding her back from what she should be, from what she should become. Was it a coincidence? Jenny was eager to turn the next card. The Present.

The Tower, upright. “Sudden upheaval, unexpected change.” It wasn’t that Jenny was afraid of change. On the contrary, she liked change and always welcomed it in her life. Her mood started to get better, she felt more optimistic and hopeful. However, she couldn’t help but think that everything in life has a price, so the question was: at what price would her life change? Her curiosity was excited and, at the same time, her heart ached. She was eager to live the future, with its good times and the bad times.

Lost in thoughts, she managed to hear her cell ringing. It was her mother. “Brace yourself, dear” the soft voice on the other side of the line said. “Grandma’s in hospital, she may not make it through the day.” Jenny could feel her heart beating fast and tears fell down her eyes. “I will catch the next bus home,” Jenny managed to whisper through her tears. “Listen, darling,” said her mother with a trembling voice. “There is no need to rush, there is no need to go through all this, I have everything arranged. Just take your time and come home.”

Jenny started packing a small rucksack with some necessities. She was three hours away from home so the trip would be short. The view of the racing trees from the window would distract her from her unpleasant thoughts, all she had to do is manage to hold back her tears. Then she got ready for the trip. She wore an outfit in black and her black jacket. She took her rucksack and handbag and got ready for the taxi that would take her to the bus station. But before that she picked one more card from the deck that lay spread on the table. The Future.

The star, upright. Jenny loved this card of hope, faith and rejuvenation. “How wonderful,” she thought, but she could hardly smile. “How can it be? How can life be good when there are unfortunate incidents? How can people smile through their tears?” Jenny thought she would never smile again after that day. Sad, she closed the door behind her and headed for the taxi. It was the first time she would experience loss and she was heartbroken. “Where to, miss?” the taxi driver’s indifferent voice woke her up and made her think. Life goes on, no matter what. We pull ourselves together and we move on. Chapters close and new ones begin. We have to be there, strong and determined. “To the bus station,” Jenny replied with a calm voice this time.

A month later her cell rang again. This time it was her grandmother’s lawyer. “Miss Swift, we need to arrange an appointment as soon as possible”, said the old voice on the phone. Jenny was surprised. She didn’t even know her grandmother had a lawyer, and couldn’t imagine how she could have anything to do with him. But it was something she couldn’t ignore, so she arranged to meet him as soon as possible, and that was the next day.  

That day Jenny found out that everything that belonged to her grandmother was hers. Jenny could do whatever she wanted with the fortune she had inherited. She was rich enough to make all her dreams come true. But as soon as she left the old lawyer’s office a thought kept pestering her. The small, ornamental, metal box with the deck of tarot cards in it. Was it fate? Was she truly gifted as her granny thought? One thing was for sure: its place was back in the last drawer of her closet. “What will be will be”, she thought and left in a hurry. She had so many things to do and a new life awaited her. There was no time to lose. She was the happiest person in the whole wide world, and that was the most precious gift of all. She felt blessed.

April 11, 2021 13:07

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2 comments

Rose Quartz
22:11 Apr 18, 2021

This is a very creative and original story, I enjoyed it very much. I liked the use of the cards and the fortunes and it just made everything THAT much better. Nice work my friend! Keep writing!

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Vanessa Queens
05:53 Apr 19, 2021

Thank you so much for your kind comments, Shana.

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