The fortune teller
Carrie and Lisa were friends for the last ten years. They had met shortly after graduating from high school. Carrie was single and her dream of finding the perfect man seemed beyond her reach. Although she met men at work, none of them seemed right. With her thirtieth birthday only two weeks away, she was becoming desperate! Lisa had met her match, but now wondered when she would have children. For her, that would make life perfect.
Every Saturday, they met at the train station near the end of Main Street. They walked down the street and often stopped at one of the many shops to buy food, clothes, or the occasional trinket. This Saturday seemed no different.
As they walked down the street, they observed a sign over a storefront that said, “Fortune Teller—Learn your future.”
Carrie and Lisa were puzzled because they had passed this storefront dozens of times and never seen this establishment before. The sign appeared to have been in place for many years.
Carrie became excited, “Let’s go in! Maybe she can tell my future!”
Lisa shook her head. “All you can think about is your dream man! She won’t help you. They’re all phonies!”
“Oh please, let’s go in!”
Lisa smiled. “Okay, but we won’t spend too much money.”
They walked in the door and saw a curtain in front of them. The sign above the curtain said, “Please Enter.”
Carrie and Lisa looked at each other as if to say, “An adventure?”
They walked into the room and it was very dark and a little spooky. In the middle of the room was a round table with a crystal ball in the center. It glowed dimly. There were three chairs around the table. There was nothing else in the room. Carrie and Lisa sat at the table.
Carrie said softly, “I wonder if anybody’s here.”
Lisa spoke in a voice even softer, “I don’t know. This place spooks me!”
An old woman came out from behind the curtain. She had a cup in her hand and placed the cup on the table in front of Lisa. “Drink this.”
Lisa looked at the cup, the old lady and then Carrie. Pointing at Carrie, Lisa said, “She wants her fortune told, not me.”
Lisa started to push the cup toward Carrie, but the old woman said, “No! That is for you. Drink it.” Lisa did not want to drink whatever was in the cup, but she was even more afraid not to drink it. So she drank it. She found the taste slightly bitter. When she put the cup down, the old woman grabbed the cup and stared into it for a few minutes.
The old woman spoke softly with an accent that neither woman recognized. “You will have a son in seven months. He will accomplish great things and you will be proud of him. In a few days, you will receive a lot of money which will be enough to pay your bills for several months. There is much happiness in your future.”
The old woman looked at Lisa and then stood up and started to walk out of the room.
Carrie asked, “What about me? Can you tell me my future?”
The old woman turned to Carrie and said, “Come back next week and all of your questions will be answered. Now go away!” The old woman walked out of the room.
Lisa looked at Carrie. They were both puzzled. “I didn’t even pay her. This is strange. I’ll pay her next week.”
Carrie and Lisa walked down the street, but they said little to each other, wondering about the strange and haunting experience that they had just had.
The next week, they met at the train station for their Saturday excursion down Main Street. They were both excited because Carrie hoped to get answers from the fortune teller about her future. Lisa was excited to share her news. The doctor said that she was two months pregnant and her husband had won the company raffle. Both women could hardly wait to see the fortune teller.
As they walked down the street, they looked for the fortune teller shop, but could not find it. They walked the entire length of the street on both sides and could not find it.
Carrie was becoming frantic. She had waited all week to have her fortune told and now they could not find the shop. “I know it was right here. What is that restaurant doing here? This is where the fortune teller was, just last week.”
Lisa was still calm. “Let’s go into the restaurant and ask them.”
They went into the restaurant and asked the owner about the fortune teller.
“Ladies, I’ve been here for twenty years and I have never seen a fortune teller anywhere around here.”
Carrie and Lisa went into every store on the street and they got the same answer. As they were about to return to the train station, they saw a police officer.
Carrie walked up to the officer. “Last week, we went to a fortune teller, right over there.” She pointed at the restaurant. “Now, she’s gone! We can’t find her! Where did she go?”
The officer was very polite. “Ladies, I’ve been on this beat for five years and I have never seen a fortune teller. Do you want to file a complaint?”
Carrie felt a little foolish but continued, “No! I just want to know my future!”
The officer smiled. “Go to city hall and check for her license. Then you can get her address.”
Carrie smiled and said, “Thank you officer. Thank you very much.”
There was a look on the officer’s face, as if he had something important to say. He tipped his hat and walked away.
“Carrie, I think this is a wild goose chase.”
The officer spun around and went back to the women. “Carrie Wells?”
Carrie, puzzled, said, “Yes?” For the first time, she looked at the nametag on the officer. “Sean Malloy!”
The excitement on the officer’s face said everything. “I sat behind you in Mrs. Smith’s English class. Every day, I planned to ask you out, but I never had the courage. When the year was over, I never saw you again.”
Carrie shook her head. “Every day, I hoped you’d ask me and you never did. I was so disappointed.”
The officer took Carrie’s hand, observing the lack of a ring, and said, “I never married and now I have the courage to ask you. Would you like to go out on a date with me?”
“More than anything else in the world!”
“I’ll meet you in an hour at the restaurant across the street. Do you want me to make some inquiries about the fortune teller?”
Carrie laughed. “No, I can make my own fortune.”
Twenty five years later, Lisa’s son David and Carrie’s daughter Jessica were walking down Main Street, as they did every Saturday morning.
“David, look! It’s a fortune teller. Let’s go inside.”
“You don’t believe in fortune tellers, do you? They’re charlatans who will just steal your money.”
“Yes, I do believe in fortune tellers. Come on. Let’s go in.”
“Okay. Funny though, I’ve never seen this shop before. I wonder why. Okay, let’s go in and see what our future will be.”