Characterization: “A horoscope, makeup, and a missing tooth.”
“Oh, come now Gerard, it’s all in good fun!”
Suzanne tugged at his arm, walking through the shabby entrance of the “Wandering Wonders Curious Circus.” Everything looked hastily put together in Gerard’s eyes. Dusty, mud stained tents lined the crowded, narrow walkway.
“This place is nothing more than a horrid display of freaks,” he huffed under his breath, adjusting his top hat to shield himself from the gaze of the “Lizard Man” and the “Conjoined Twins.” Sweat began to bead up in his mustache as his comfort level significantly dropped.
“Don’t say that, they can surely hear you,” Suzanne hit his shoulder lightly with her closed fan, giggling with delight as a passing dwarf man handed her a rose. Gerard gave him a wicked sneer as he walked off, disappearing into the crowd.
“I know how to act in public dear, but please, if anyone from my firm sees me in a place like this-“
“Then you can tell them that I dragged you here against your will!” Her lips curled into a wide grin as she spotted the faded striping of one tent in particular. A splintered wooden sign was held up by a pole at the entrance.
~The Almighty and Powerful Yvette~
~Tarot Readings, Horoscopes and Visions~
“Oh, how intriguing it would be to meet that Yvette! May we go and see her, Gerard?”
An unruly chill shot up his spine that froze his sweat. He had no clue or inkling as to what, but something was off, something was very off.
‘Everything feels off in this place…’
He sighed and dismissed the thought, and nodded. She jumped a bit in excitement and started towards the tent flap, with him following a little ways behind. The quiet swoosh of the fabric door escorted them inside. Thick clouds of burning incense and old candle smoke wafted around them. Gerard took out his handkerchief and coughed harshly, holding his nose and mouth. Suzanne waved her hand in front of her face.
A voice, low and methodical, seemed to echo out from the middle of the small space. A match was sparked, a large candlewick lit. A face shown by the light in the shadow, with thickly painted eyebrows and lips. One brow raised and the lips extended into an open smirk. Her teeth almost glowed yellow, with a front incisor missing, letting a fleshy tongue poke out. Gerard’s face twisted in disgust, Suzanne’s in curiosity. The woman, clad in shimmering cloth and twinkling jewels, some seemingly encrusted into her hands and forehead, did not break eye contact.
“Will you not sit…”
She spoke, as more of a statement than a question. There was a single chair across from her at the table. Suzanne took it immediately, enthralled.
“You must be Ms. Yvette, yes?”
“Then you can tell me my horoscope, my future and all that is to come?”
Suzanne waited a few stiff seconds. Nothing happened.
“Well then, why don’t you?!”
“Pay first. Then I shall read your horoscope…”
Suzanne looked over pleadingly at Gerard, who stood back and off to the side of her. With a slight roll of his eyes and a belabored sigh, he took from his pocket some coins and tossed them onto the table with a light clatter. Yvette looked them over, examined them carefully, bit into them. When satisfied, she dropped them into a small coin pouch attached to her waist.
“We can start now, right?” Suzanne shifted around in her chair.
“Yes. Give me you hands, child…”
She did as she was told, putting her fan down, and the women clasped hands.
‘This is utter nonsense…’
Gerard watched in uninterested dismay. Yvette closed her eyes.
“Ah, yes.. yes… you’re an Aries, no doubt…”
“What do you see? Tell me.”
She grew more and more nervous as the woman gave no response.
Yvette’s eyes opened, and she released Suzanne’s hands. Gerard watched, starting to become frightened, thought unsure why. The chill crept up his spine again, and Yvette’s eyes shot up at him staring him down with a cold, heartless look. But before long, her gaze turned back to the woman in front of her.
“You and your fiancé will marry happily. Be wary of those with too perfect an image and spend not your money on luxuries, and you will be happy…”
Suzanne smiled with joy, “Will I? Oh, thank you Ms. Yvette for this most glorious news!” She jumped up from her chair, and bid a farewell, as she exited with Gerard. He quickly left with her, relieved. He could still feel that gaze locked onto him, unyielding.
Soon after, they were on their way to leave when Suzanne remembered.
“My fan! Oh, I must have left it in the Ms. Yvette’s tent, Gerard, do go get it for me, won’t you?”
“Ah.. yes, of course, dear…”
He retraced their steps back to Yvette’s tent. Flicking the entrance open, he saw that it was now better lit up, a dim glow illuminating the stretched fabric walls and the smoke in the sir. He did not see that woman. He did, however, spot Suzanne’s fan, left on the table. He snatched it up and turned to leave.
Turning right around to see her.
“How dare you…”
Gerard’s eyes widened, stammering.
“You’re not afraid of your colleagues seeing you here. You’re afraid of them seeing you with her…”
She paused, stepping closer. Gerard backed away a step.
“She does not yet know you’re already betrothed to another, but you can not fool me…”
His shock turned into an angered growl, “How would you know anything, hag?”
“I was not seeing your ‘dear’s’ horoscope, I was seeing yours. You are a very horrid man,” she spit, “But you will dare not touch me, for you are a much as a coward as you are a bastard…”
“Why not just tell Suzanne then, you had the opportunity?!”
Her cold look cracked a smirk, missing tooth and all.
“People come to see me for what I do. My job however, is to give them good news. I would never get by otherwise. Now go…”
Yvette’s features turned to stone again as she flicked her wrist, sending Gerard out with an invisible push, into the mud.