IT’S ALL IN THE CARDS

Illustration for 8 great (cards)          Some time ago she read of a woman who could read the newspaper through her fingertips. Amazing, if true, she thought she wondered if she could duplicate the feat. Starting with the newspaper seemed much too daunting. Even a book seemed too much of a hurdle. She would start with a deck of cards.
After shuffling the deck three times — just to get the feel of things — she laid the deck face down on the table and slid off the first two cards. Which was the higher? She pressed the fingertips of her right hand, first on one; then on the other; then back to the first one again. It had to be the card on the left. She was sure of it.
She was correct.
Left card, ten. Right card, two.
Buoyed by her success, she went through the entire deck. Sometimes she was right. Just as often she was wrong.
Day after day she persisted. By the end of a month, she could guess correctly about 80% of the time. She could not identify the suit nor the face value — only which was the higher.
She kept this a secret until one day she decided to reveal her accomplishment to her husband. She was concentrating on the cards so much — she really did want to impress him — that she did not notice the expression on his face — something akin to horror — until she triumphantly finished.
Are you going to read my mind next?
Had he said it aloud?
Or did she hear him think it?
Or did she imagine that was what he would have said had he said anything at all?
“You couldn’t tell, could you?” she asked with a shrug and small laugh. “The way I marked the cards, I mean.”
Relief flooded his face. “No, you fooled me. You really gave me the creeps.”
And that was the last time she “read” the cards, even when she was alone.

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3 Comments

Filed under Musings, Paula Reuben, Short fiction

3 responses to “IT’S ALL IN THE CARDS

  1. emarko3017@gmail.com

    Paula–Your creativity always amazes me!

    Like

  2. jorgekafkazar

    I knew a child who could pick any card from the deck by spreading it out, face down, then hovering his hand over the array until one card “felt like it was humming.” His mother was very upset by this, but their maid assured her that “Lots of little kids can do that, but they forget how after a while.” Which is exactly what happened.

    Like

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