A CRY FROM THE DEEP

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Authors: Unknown
amused. Brian had always been a troublemaker. “He’s exaggerating.”
    “Yeah?” Brian looked incredulous. “What about that time when we stayed at the place on the point? You were pretty freaked out when we went through that graveyard at night—”
    “We were fourteen at the time.”
    “Fourteen? I don’t—”
    “Sixteen, tops. We were kids.”
    “So, I tell fortune?” Her hands on her hips, the tarot card reader beckoned again.
    Marjorie steered him to the chair by the psychic. “It won’t hurt. We’ve all done it.”
    “I haven’t,” he said, sitting down.
    “Then there’s always the first time.”
    Daniel reluctantly took out his money clip and put two twenties and a ten on the table. The psychic unwrapped the thin black cloth covering the tarot cards and shuffled them a few times. “Please, cut the deck. Then put in three piles.”
    Daniel had always been suspicious of fortune-tellers. As a man of science, he had no patience for anything that couldn’t easily be explained by some mathematical formula or rational thought. He couldn’t understand how anybody could be taken in by these phonies, but he played along, if only to appease Marjorie. She was invaluable as a fund-raiser, and he didn’t want to appear obstinate or cheap.
    After he combined the three piles as instructed, the psychic spread the cards in a cross formation. Among them were the Six of Swords, the Fool, and the Lovers card. Her head was bent over the spread as she studied them, one at a time. 
    Daniel wondered why it was taking her so long. Was there something to be concerned about or was this all a part of her act? His frustration mounted when a few more guests crowded around. Whatever she had to say, he wished it could be done in private. He didn’t want his fortune, fake or not, relayed throughout the party.
    “You will be taking a long journey.”
    “Could be. I’ve been thinking of one.” So far, so good. Nothing unusual there. Pretty predictable, in fact. Who doesn’t go on long trips?
    “I see lots of water.”
    He turned to Brian and smiled. “Sean must have told her I was a nautical archaeologist.”
    Brian chuckled. “Right.”
    The psychic showed no emotion, seemingly unruffled by Daniel’s skepticism. “It will be a spiritual journey. One that will change the course of your life. There is also a great love waiting for you. Someone searching for you. She has been for a long time.”
    “He’s engaged,” said Marjorie. “I think she’s found him.”
    The fortune-teller narrowed her eyes and then closed them. “It is not her.”
    Marjorie wrinkled her brow. “Better not tell Sean that.”
    “Tell me what?” asked Sean, as she joined the growing crowd.
    Daniel rose from the chair. “That was interesting. Profound.”
    “Meester, I’m not finished.”
    “It’s okay. I am.” He grabbed Sean’s arm and pulled her away.
    The psychic motioned him back. “There is more,” she said loudly.
    “You don’t want to know the rest?” called Marjorie after him.
    Eyeing the onlookers, Daniel said to Marjorie, “They’re anxious to learn their destiny.” He winked at her. “You don’t want to keep them waiting. It’s not good for the cause.”
    “At least you tried, buddy,” said Brian with a grin.
    As Sean and Daniel walked off, she looked back at the fortune-teller. “What wasn’t I supposed to know?”
    “Nothing. It was a silly reading.”
    “Daniel, please tell me. Those people have some kind of gift.”
    “Yeah, the gift of sucking in gullible people.” He put his arm around her shoulders. “Are you finished in the kissing booth?”
    “Yes, my lips are bruised.” She licked her lips in emphasis.
    “Ah, but you did good,” he said, barely looking at her. They reached the manor’s grand patio with a view of the grounds and the ocean. There were people everywhere—some playing croquet, others throwing horseshoes, and a large number at the bar in one of the white tents. He’d had

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