Warrior's Destiny

By: Vivian Venus

It’s not like Heather Clemens had planned for her life to end up this way.

“Palms, cards or crystal?” Heather asked as her friend Rachel pulled out a bottle of wine from a paper grocery bag and set it on the table.

“Mm. Let’s do cards, for old times’ sake.”

Except for her height, Heather had always been a pretty average girl throughout her younger years, never going too far out of her way to learn how to do makeup or dress cute, happy that she was able to at least attract people with some of the things she did. She loved to read, she loved to run, and she loved fortune telling. It was the last one that she had been most proud of during school.

Even though she wasn’t the kind of girl who would ever become popular, Heather found people coming to her to ask her to read their fortunes. She had always been so “freaky accurate”, as her friends used to tell her. Whether it was if they were going to ace a big test, or get with a certain boy, Heather’s fortunes usually told the truth.

She had no idea how she did it. She couldn’t even remember when she first got a deck of tarot cards. But she knew she had always loved it, and she was good at it.

But sometimes things that you enjoy doing the most end up getting the love sucked right out of them. Life just worked that way, at least that’s how she felt.

She never went to college. When her mother and father died in a tragic accident, Heather was forced to work several part time jobs to keep herself afloat. It was at the suggestion of one of her old friends that she decided to open her fortune telling business.

It had been a wonderful idea at first, and Heather found herself feeling positive about things for the first time in a while. But once her expenses started growing, and she started getting older, and all her friends started to get married… Then day after day of answering the same old questions, telling the same fortunes to the same spacy customers started to wear on her. Heather’s life had ground to a halt. She wasn’t going anywhere. The future had nothing in store for her.

“So this is it, huh?” Heather said with a sad smile as she brought out the worn out tarot cards and placed them on the table in the middle of the living room-turned-fortune telling salon. “Turn off the sign please, Rachel?”

“You sure? I don’t want you to lose any business or anything.”

“It’s okay. No one is coming in today anyway. Besides, I want our last little hangout together to go uninterrupted.”

“Aw, Heather! It’s not like I’m leaving the country or something, I’m only getting engaged.” Rachel pulled the string on the glowing ‘OPEN’ sign and clicked it off. “Anyway, I need to run some errands so I can’t stick around too long.”

“Okay, sure. Pour me some wine?”

Rachel grabbed two glasses out from the cabinet and set them on the table, then uncorked the bottle of wine and filled them up, giving Heather a wink. Heather laughed and fanned out the cards, and Rachel sat down across from her and selected three to use in the spread while she sipped from her wine glass. She set them down in front of her, face down.

“So what do you want me to read? And don’t say, ‘the marriage’.”

Rachel gasped with fake offense. “Heather! Don’t tell me that!”

“I already told you, it wouldn’t be a good idea to read your marriage. Nothing good could come out of that.” She touched the ocean blue gemstone of the ring on her right index finger, feeling its smooth, cool surface. A nervous habit of hers, ever since she had inherited the ring from her grandma.

“Okay, fine. Why don’t we do a reading to see if we really are never going to see each other again,” Rachel teased.

“That’s even worse!” Heather laughed. “Okay, okay. You asked for it, I’ll read your marriage.”

Ever since high school Rachel always had Heather do readings about her love life. In fact, she had been the one to help her and her fiancée get together. If only she could help herself get a man…

“Yay,” Rachel said, scooting in her chair.

Heather took a small drink from her glass and let out an exaggerated sigh. “Don’t blame me if the reading is bad, though.”

She flipped over the first card. On it was a print of a robed bearded man sitting in a throne.

During readings, Heather always followed her first intuition, the first notion that popped into her head. Right now she got the feeling of sadness, confusion. “The Emperor. You both have lost something. Something important to you. You’re fighting to understand how it was lost, and you both rely on each other’s strength to get through it.”

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