A Young Adult Novel
Shannon drew the curtain and I found myself trapped in the room, with only Madame Elizabeth as my company for the next God knew how long. I glanced at the woman sitting behind a round table covered with a velvet cloth. A stack of harmless looking cards lay in front of her.
“Hello, young man,” she greeted with an elaborate flair of her hand. “Have a seat.”
I returned her greeting with a tight smile then, with great reluctance, sank into the chair opposite her. To begin with, I had no idea what the heck this tarot and psychic crap was all about, except the possibility of predicting one’s luck or discovering what might happen in the future. Remaining silent, I rested my clammy palms on my thighs.
“So, what are you looking to see? Love, adventure . . . perhaps happiness?” she queried, spreading the colorful cards across the table in a single sweep. The cards fanned across the surface like fallen dominoes. In perfect sync.
“I do—don’t know,” I stammered. A jerk shot through my tight shoulders before I could stop it.
Madame Elizabeth’s gaze met mine for a brief moment. Although her eyes were hidden underneath red-rimmed glasses, it was obvious she saw my discomfort, and it put me on the defensive. The woman was stunning in a disturbing way. It felt like she could see right through me, as if she knew my secrets, and that in itself was disconcerting.
I studied her while she perused the cards. Her hair was tied in a loose bun on top of her head and she wore a magician type tunic which reminded me of mystical characters. I had the urge to roll my eyes when she began playing the part, momentarily closing her eyes and breathing deep. Hands splayed on the cards, she caressed each one before she finally collected the stack. Shuffling the cards once, she then laid a few back down on the table with quick and precise movements. With utmost concentration, she studied them, choosing one.
She flipped the card for me to check. “What do you see?”
Considering I had no idea what to look for, I stared at the card. “I see a circle with four distinct colors on the edges.”
Nodding, she dropped the card and turned another one. This time, her thin, almost invisible brows furrowed. “With every curse comes a blessing,” she said.
The very moment she uttered those words, the hair at the back of my neck rose and I experienced a ‘what the hell’ moment.
Lorenz’s perfect day consists of writing and lounging on her garage couch, aka the office, with a glass of her favorite cabernet while listening to her ever-growing music collection. She enjoys dabbling in different genres, with an intense focus on angst and the redemption of flawed characters. Her fascination with romantic twists is a mainstay in all her stories.
Lorenz lives in California with her husband, children, and two demanding dogs. She divides her time between her full-time job as a hospital office manager and her busy writing schedule.