Circus Nights

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He’s heard about it for forever and a day. The colors and lights bring a whirlwind of emotions. They dazzle even the most bad-mannered of men. Love is brought here to flourish and grow. Children laugh and play all through the night. The circus has arrived.

Josh knew the circus meant a day off of work. He had been working hard at the mill, and his hands seemed to be permanently black. All of his friends would be there. He knew that for sure. But all he could think about was the sweet taste of a candy apple. It was going to glorious.

It was a crisp Saturday night. The air smelled like grease, and candy. Josh could see the magnificent colors from the carnival in the distance. He had decided to drive to the carnival alone. Though his friends had wanted him to carpool, he needed some time to clear his head. He had no idea what he was doing with his life. It seemed as if every day was a constant battle of “What do I do?” His mind seemed to scream “What are you doing?” He honestly didn’t know. Josh was only 18. He was good looking with short blonde hair and blue eyes and he had the world in front of him. But it seemed like he could only see 10 feet in front of him. Nothing made sense. Josh felt like a part of him was missing. He hoped the carnival would make some of these feelings go away, even if only temporarily.

The world seemed to spin around him. He had rode so many rides, and ate so many things it was unbelievable. After he had seen all the “spectacles” there were to see, he spotted the booth for the psychic. Of course Josh didn’t believe in things like tarot cards, or magic. But it seemed like a fun thing to do, so he decided to give it a try.

Josh walked into the tent and was instantly in awe. The inside was filled with purple, blue and orange sashes. It was only lit by five candles, and seemed to give off a mysterious vibe. But it wasn’t the decorations that caught his attention. It was the marvelous creature sitting behind the table. She was young, with long black hair and tan skin. Her eyes seemed black and endless in the dimmed lighting. She was stunning. Josh realized he had stopped in the doorway, and she beckoned him inside. He immediately sat down and paid her the 75 cents for the palm reading. This strange enchantress seemed very interested in him, but he guessed it was part of the act.

“My name is Mystique. Have you ever had your palm read before?” she asked.

Josh shook his head no. If he had known she had been here, he would have definitely got one sooner.

“Unfortunate. I see many things on your hand,” she began, “and I see distress. A hard worker, you are. But your life is not what you would like it to be. But it seems a new opportunity will present itself soon.”

She looked confused for a minute. Mystique checked his palm once, and then twice.

Finally she said, “Love is very close for you. It could even happen on this very night.”

Josh perked up. Love. Maybe that’s what he’s been missing. He hadn’t thought about that. He worked hard, and by the time he got home he would fall asleep as soon as his head hit the pillow. Love is the ache in his heart. The longing he’s been feeling, even now.

Josh thanked Mystique and stood up. He was ready to find his love no matter how long it took. But before he could leave Mystique stopped him.

“Josh?” Mystique asked.

Josh froze. He hadn’t told her his name. He turned and looked at this wondrous woman, wondering how and why he felt like he already knew her.

She took a deep breath and asked him, “Do you believe in love at first sight?”