The original title of this story was “Tarot is Just a Card Game”, but then I decided to re-name it many years later because the title felt a little flat.
I got into tarot when I was in high school and frankly, I’m lucky I never got in trouble for it. You don’t grow up in a red state and attend a public school without getting a big ol’ heaping helping of Jesus shoved down your throat. But I did have people accuse me of being a witch and/or a Satan worshiper. So this story was born out of the fear of more dire consequences.
PS: These stories are being posted in their original form, grammar errors and all. So yes, I’m aware of them and they make me cringe just as much as they do you. But hopefully that’s also part of their charm.
“Hey, what’s that?” Jeniffer asked Ahsley one day at school when she saw the new box of cards with pictures in her purse.
“Oh, those are my tarot cards,” she answered matter-of-factly.
“What are tarot cards?” Kym asked.
“They’re a card game that tells you you’re future,” she responded.
“Oh cool! How do they work?” Jeniffer asked.
“Well, I think of a question to ask,” Ahsley explained, pausing and puckering her face real hard as she usually does when she’s thinking, “shuffle the cards like this,” she said, shuffling, “and deal them out like this,” she demonstrated, laying the cards out in the Celtic cross spread she learned from a website.
“Well, what did you ask?” Jeniffer asked.
“I forgot,” Ahsley said absentmindedly.
“Well what do they say? Maybe you can figure out your question by knowing the answer first, like on Jeopardy,” Kym suggested.
“Hey, that’s a good idea!” Ahsley exclaimed. “Well, first off we have the three of swords.”
“Well what does it mean?” Kym asked.
“Well, you’re supposed to look at the picture and figure out what it means. Hmm, what does a giant heart with three swords stabbed through it mean?”
“Maybe it means someone’s gonna stab you in the heart like in Scream,” Jeniffer cried excitedly.
“No, I don’t think so,” Ahsley said, “the guy in Scream only had one weapon, and that was a knife. These are swords, and there’s three of them.”
“Well what about this card over here?” Kym asked, pointing to the Tower card.
“I don’t know, it looks kinda scary,” Jeniffer said. “Is your house gonna burn down or something?” she asked fearfully.
“I don’t think so. The thing that’s burning down in the card is a castle. My house is a house.”
“Hey, look at that card! Those people are naked!” Jeniffer shrieked, pointing at the Lovers card and announcing the state of their apparel to the entire lunchroom. Pretty soon, everyone who heard her was crowding around the table to see the naked pictures. And as always when crowds of people gather during school hours, a teacher happened to come by to break it up and see what was going on.
And also, as always when a teacher sees naked pictures of people, she grabbed the girls and the cards and rushed them all to the principal’s office.
Once inside Ms. Zmith, the one that found the girls with the cards, Mrs. Christian, and the principal, Mr. Storie all contemplated on what to do as punishment.
“I found these girls looking at naked cartoon people during lunch, and causing a ruckus!” Ms. Zmith testified.
“What’s a ruckus?” Kym asked.
“Those aren’t just naked pictures Mr. Storie, those are tarot cards!” Mrs. Chirstian bellowed, extending a pointed finger accusingly at the pile of cards on his desk.
“Well duh, I could’ve told you that,” Ahsley said.
“Not only is this pornography, but Satan worship going on is this school! These cards must be burned, and these girls expelled immediately from school forever!” Mrs. Christian preached.
“Now now now, Mrs. Christian, no need for hysterics,” Mr. Storie assured her calmly. “Leave me alone with the girls, I assure you I’ll deal with them accordingly.”
The second the teachers left the room and the door clicked shut behind them, Mr. Storie’s whole personality changed. His mustache twitched with excitement, his bald forehead glistened under the fluorescent lights, and his hands wiggled with anticipation.
“You said those were tarot cards, right?” He asked eagerly.
“Yeah, why?” Ahsley asked.
“The kind that tell your future?” He continued anxiously.
“Yeah, why?” Ahsley repeated.
“Can you tell me my future please? I want to know reely reely bad,” he pleaded with her.
“All right, all right,” she said, and dealt the cards. “I see you getting a big promotion and a lot more money. Then I see you buying a big house, an expensive new sports car, and getting many beautiful women to sleep with you.”
“All right then, you may go. And speak of this to no one,” Mr. Storie told them, and escorted them out of the office.
“Wow Ahsley, how did you know all of that?” Kym and Jeniffer wanted to know.
“I didn’t, I just told him what he wanted to hear so we wouldn’t get in trouble,” she explained.
***6 months later***
“Did you two hear? We’re getting a new principal,” Jeniffer announced one day at lunch.
“Really? What happened to Mr. Storie?” Ahsley asked.
“He got into a car accident that day we almost got in trouble for those cards. It was really bad, he was in, like, one of those full body casts in the hospital for about 5 months,” Kym explained.
“Yeah, and then the school fired him for not coming to work,” Jeniffer added. “And now he’s gonna lose his house and his car cuz he doesn’t have any money.”
“Wow, what a bummer. I guess it just goes to show you that tarot cards are just a game.”
The girls enjoyed a good laugh and quickly forgot about the incident over some chicken nuggets from the cafeteria.