|Snow (standard:humor, 1316 words)|
|Author: kendall thomas||Added: Nov 10 2002||Views/Reads: 2466/1393||Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)|
|Tale of irony.|
~SNOW~ By Twisted Wabbit Freddy was a born loser, and that was probably the reason he decided to go into the fortune teller's shop. For he certainly wasn't very superstitious. Just curious. Hopeful perhaps. He had passed the place many times on his daily walks and hardly noticed it. It didn't stand out at you like such a place should have. There should have been bold, glaring letters painted on the darkened, plate glass window; signs of the zodiac, mystic runes and symbols to lure one in; bold, upper cased words like DESTINY ! FATE ! YOUR FUTURE FORECASTED ! with large exclamation points. There should have been a pyramid with the evil eye of some malign god peering out at the passerby -- something to get one's attention, something to draw one in, but there was none of that. Nothing glaring or sensational. Nothing carnivalistic about the facade of the mundane, little shop . It was a plain, rather nondescript sort of place. Stated simply on the door, next to the window were the words “Madame Zengra -- Fortunes told” in flaking, gild lettering. Much like what you would expect to find on the door to a doctor's office or an attorney's who had come upon hard times. The neighborhood about was shabby; the best years had passed it by. Such genteel lettering seemed out of sorts with these vulgar surroundings. The understated advertisement of the proprietor's talents couldn't compete with the raw, bold commercial claims of neighboring businesses: the gaudy, flashing, neon signs over bars and strip joints and gated pawn shops; the rundown grocery store with its dozens of sales signs; the drug store with its discount claims; the five and dime with it extravagant promise of reduced prices; the flop houses with their seedy “by the day or week”. Even the abandoned, hollow buildings were still trying to compete with faded lettering echoing merchandise long since vanished. At any rate, whatever it was that made Freddy decide to go inside the fortune teller's shop that day it changed the rest of his life. Madam Zengra didn't look anything like the stereotypical soothsayer. No gypsy getup. No head wrap; no large, gold hoop ear rings; or finger rings; or gold necklaces; or garish gown -- or anything. Nor did the place resemble his notion of a fortune teller's shop. There was no round table with crystal ball; no beaded doorways; or smoky incense wafting from human skulls; or any other outré adornments at all about the place. The woman who greeted him was small and rotund with a round, pleasant face dressed in an ordinary fashion. The living room she conducted him to was conventionally furnished, well kept and cozy. Freddy felt that he must have entered the wrong door, somehow -- even though that would have been impossible since there had been only one. She invited him to sit in an overstuffed armchair, where a white cat lounged unmindfully on the top of the backrest, while she fiddled about in a small open kitchen fixing him a cup of coffee. And when he sipped it, he noticed that she had got it just right--with cream and sugar--even though he hadn't mentioned how he liked it. She had made herself plain tea--nothing exotic, Lipton's, with the tab hanging from the string into the chipped saucer. She sat down across from him on a green, slightly peeling, vinyl sofa and smiled sweetly at him. “Snow,” she said quietly, breaking the silence of the room, filled only with the ticking of an antique clock above the fireplace mantle. Then she took a sip of her tea, holding the cup handle daintily between her thumb and forefinger leaving her little finger arched upward like a question mark. “Excuse me,” Freddy said after a moment, not really certain she had spoken or whether he had read her thoughts, so soft was her voice. Click here to read the rest of this story (83 more lines)
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