From the Sky - Part VII

"This I will tell you, Raimonda. You will live a good life. You will be happy. But you will never marry."

Madame Béatrice turned to Sal and Zia and said: "You will both know love, but one will marry and one will grieve."

"What about me?" cried Paulie.

“You are too young for me to read very well. There are so many paths you might take in your life. It is too early to tell. But I do know this: You will face your enemy and you will conquer your fear. Now leave, all of you. At once!”

They started to leave, but young Paulie turned back and said: "The drawing on the shade. What does it mean?"

Madame Béatrice paused, tilting her head back and looking down her nose at him, her faced locked in a frozen half-grin.

"It means," she said softly, "That my heart is gentle. That you have nothing to fear from me. Now run along!"

She shooed them out of the house and they began to walk swiftly over the crumbling, cracked sidewalks toward home. They walked in silence for a long ways, each sister quietly mulling what they'd heard, Rae clutching the leather book to her breast.

"I still think it's a bunch of junk," said Paulie as they rounded a corner and the bakery came into view. But his voice was tentative, thin and lacking in conviction. His sisters paid what he said no mind at all.

A kindhearted woman dwells here...


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