GENRE: YA Fantasy
Riches, love, and death. That’s all they cared to hear about. All anyone wanted from my tarot cards and me. No matter where our caravan traveled, the townspeople came in droves, traipsing through the wilderness to our shoddy camps, desperate to have their fortunes told. Like a swarm of angry bees, they’d buzz in and out our vardos, tossing fistfuls of pennies in our hats, hoping to learn the secrets of life, as they called them.
I called them falsehoods. Dirty, little lies. But, perhaps, I was too blunt.
“Tell me, Madam Taliya, why am I not rich?” they would ask me. Or: “How can I make her fall in love with me?” Or: “When and where will I die?”
Riches, love, and death. Always in that order.
But I wasn’t above making a dime, and I certainly wasn’t going to tell them the truth— that the cards were just a guideline, a prediction of events should their course not change. That wasn’t what the customers wanted to hear. Wasn’t what they were paying for. No one wanted to be told they were poor ‘cause they were a worthless drunk. Or that they would never find love ‘cause they had an insufferable personality— one they likely inherited from their equally insufferable mother. That implied a portion of the bad luck was their own doing, their own fault, and worse yet still, that they could change it.
Change. Such a filthy, rotten word. I learned never to mention it ‘cause change sounded hard.