Insight

Seph cut the link and relaxed back into her chair.

“And good luck dodging that bullet.” She let the words whisper out like a long sigh as she ran one hand through her black hair.

“Another bad one?” Emm enquired from the door.

Seph pushed back her shoulders trying to ease the stiffness.

“Yeah,” she replied, not taking her eyes from the three screens placed on the desk. “I long for the days when I could tell people they’d find true love, or their lost cat would return home.” She poked at icons on the projected control panel laid out on the surface. Browser tabs closed and chat feeds started to vanish. “Why does it have to be so much shit these days? It’s starting to piss me off.”

Hands reached over the back of the chair and began rubbing at the knotted tension. Heat blossomed in muscles.

“We’ll have to start getting you ads in retirement complexes; the rich ones down Florida.” The smile was evident even though Emm’s face was hidden.

“Yeah, and all they’ll want to talk about is when they’re gonna to die.” Seph caught herself. “I’m sorry hon, it’s been one of those days; death and destruction in every vision.” She reached up and touched the other woman’s hand. Emm stopped massaging and squeezed back. For a moment they took comfort in holding each other.

“You know I don’t mind hearing about it. When have I ever got bored with your visions?” She stepped around the chair and lifted herself onto the desk. “Come on, tell me what my captive internet seer has been seeing today?”

Seph looked up into her partner’s blue eyes and felt the last echoes of stress vanish. She rested one hand on Emm’s knee, pushing back the fabric of the green summer dress so there was skin to skin contact.

“Well, today we had a little Chinese lady call in from Qingdao wanting to know if the green sea would return this year because her husband can’t afford another summer without being able to fish. I decided not to tell her about the skeletal man steering his boat across burning waters and instead picked out the symbols of change from the vision.” She averted her eyes, not wanting to let on to the pain the sight had brought forth. “I don’t think she was convinced.”

Emm touched her hand again. “You did the best you could, hon. Don’t be so hard on yourself.”

Seph ignored her partner’s reassurance. “After that I had some guy on the west coast asking if the war with Japan would start up again. All I could pick up was the feeling of cold and the sensation of drowning. That was great feedback.”

“You’re not paid to only tell people the good news,” Emm tried again, fingers squeezing once more.

“But there’s never any good news.” Seph’s eyes were wide and filling with tears. “It’s all gone. I see the future and it’s filled with death. The world is going to Hell and I can’t tell people it’ll be okay.”

Emm pushed herself off the desk and bent to kiss Seph. “Let’s go get some takeout and tequila. If the world’s going to end I think we’ll be better off facing it smashed out of our heads than sober.”

Seph was pulled up from her chair; reluctance ebbing away. “I’m not going to be the best company tonight.”

“You’ll be perfect.” Emm kissed her again. “If you’re lucky later I’ll even dance for you.”

A smile finally inched across Seph’s face. “Alright, you’ve convinced me.”

***

Ober burst into his brother’s room. “Dude, you’re never going to believe this.”

“I’m busy. Believe what?”

“That psychic chick on the net. The one you said was getting high ratings for giving out predictions of doom. Well I went to check out her site?” He paused for effect.

“And?”

“She‘s dead, man. Wiped out in an RTA the other day. Her pages have turned into some kind of memorial thing.”

“That’s harsh.”

“Yeah and you’ve gotta wonder if she saw it coming.”

“That’s sick, dude. You shouldn’t say that sort of thing.”

“Funny though,” Ober responded.

“Yeah, sure, now get lost, I’ve got an assignment to finish.”

—————

9 July 2010
Paul, an octopus in Germany, has been grabbing headlines with his predictions of his country’s wins (and losses) in the FIFA World Cup.

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