“You fall in love too easily,” he said.
I jerked my palm away involuntarily.
“Where? Where do you see that?” I asked.
The reader handed me his magnifying glass and I squinted in the dim light to see where he pointed.
“There,” he said, “Your heart line ends in a deep groove between your first and middle fingers. That’s a sure sign of one who loves being in love. Perhaps a bit too much.”
He gave me a knowing glance and took back the magnifier.
I leaned back in the chair and took another sip of my wine, glancing around for my friends. It had been Gwyn’s idea to stop by Hotel La Croix on a quiet Wednesday night. Reconnaissance she called it.
“We’ll go, have a cocktail and spy on the staff to see if they have any new marketing tricks up their sleeves,” she had said. Gwyn was great at that. Observing other people’s ideas, giving them a tweak or two which made them ten times better and calling them her own. That’s one of the reason’s I hired her. After all, there aren’t any original ideas, I told myself, recognizing how jaded I sounded, just new ways of doing the same old shit.
I had to give La Croix some credit. Having an in-house palm reader was definitely new bait for the slinky sexy crowd that dropped ungodly amounts of cash on signature cocktails.
A chuckle from said bait drew my attention back to my hand.
“What now?” I asked.
“Tell me,” he said in a quiet smiling voice, “Do you enjoying flirting?”
I felt the left corner of my mouth turn up at his question.
“Who doesn’t?” I answered.
In fact, I was hesitant to admit, especially with girls I supervised only a few feet away just how much of a flirt I could be. In college a guy once told me I treated men (can you call them men in college?) like fish in a trap basket. I gave them just enough water to stay hopeful, but nothing more.
Their fake palm reader was going to have to do better than this if he wanted a tip, I thought.
As if reading my mind, he leaned forward and said, “You moved around as lot a child.”
I sat very still and simply raised an eyebrow, not wanting to give anything away.
“Hum,” he said, tracing a line across the center of my palm, “Yes, you moved almost every year until you were fourteen.”
Now he had my attention.
“My dear,” he said, “This isn’t trickery or mystical voodoo. I just tell you what see. You are free to keep your guard up, but you will get a much better reading if you give me some feedback. What is it you’re wanting to know anyway?”
Now there was a question.
“I ask,” he continued, “Because many people don’t really want to know the truth, but even with all the walls you’ve put around yourself, I believe you’re the type who wants to know.”
“Bring it on,” I laughed, thinking, really, how bad can it be?
“You will find out something, it looks like around your 36th birthday, that shakes the core of who you believe yourself to be and this will drastically alter the course of your life.”
Long pause. I was inclined to shrug this off as a melodramatic display designed to make me think I’m getting my money’s worth, but there was something that rang true about his voice, his eyes.
“It’s not a bad thing,” he continues, “In fact, you look to be set on the money front and your volatile relationships settle down. I’m not sure if you find one, deep, lasting love or if you get very comfortable being alone. Either way you’ll be content. But get ready for some turmoil before all that happens.”
Turmoil was an understatement.
I look back on that night now and wonder, if I had just asked a few more questions, if I had listened more carefully, would I have been able to avoid some of the turmoil? But no, even now when I look at my hand, I see clearly the point where my fate line stops, shifts by about an eighth of an inch and continues on up my hand. So, do I believe in fate? Hell yes. But, I believe in a lot more than fate… now.