It was a typical night. The day had been peaceful, and the sunset transformed into a mysterious and captivating scene. Daylight gave way to a gentle twilight, and stars began to dot the dark sky. The moon, bright and radiant, softly illuminated the landscape, casting a silvery glow over everything it touched, while the night breeze caressed the leaves of the trees and gently swayed the flowers.
Kareena had always felt that the nighttime atmosphere brought a sense of serenity, and the fresh air carried a certain magic with it, as if secrets and mysteries were about to be revealed.
It was an ordinary night to everyone's eyes, but she felt that something significant was about to happen, and she couldn't slow her racing heart until she knew what was coming.
And the answer came when two mysterious and pompous young people entered her circus tent.
Her fortune-telling tent in the circus was a somewhat mysterious and charming place in her opinion, standing out amidst the other colorful and vibrant structures around. However, despite its outward appearance adorned with exotic fabrics and intricate patterns that captured the attention of curious onlookers, Kareena had to admit that her tent was not the most sought-after in the circus. Unfortunately, belief in fortune-telling was dwindling, especially among the younger crowd, so the young couple standing before her surprised her.
"Are you the fortune-teller?" the girl asked. Kareena nodded, and the young girl eagerly rushed to the chair in front of the table where Kareena sat. "I thought you'd be older."
Kareena felt like crying. Ten out of ten clients said that to her, and despite being in her twenties, she looked even younger, which further hurt her reputation as a fortune-teller. "I'll take it as a compliment," she replied to the girl, who seemed younger than her. Kareena looked at the tent's entrance, and the other young man was still standing as if he were undecided about whether it was worth his time to stay or leave. "Are you together?" she asked to speed up his decision.
"Yes," the girl hurried to answer, gesturing with her hands. "Come on, Lys."
Reluctantly, the young man came over, almost dragging his feet, taking the second seat at the table. Clearly, going there had been the girl's idea.
He looked deeply into Kareena's eyes with a coldness that sent shivers down her spine, then averted his gaze with indifference. His look conveyed such contempt for being in that place that, if Kareena weren't in need of money and short on customers, she would have sent him away.
"Help me on this difficult night," she thought to the stars.
She sighed briefly and made an effort to put her customary enigmatic smile on her face. "Welcome to the fortune-teller's realm," she began the introduction as usual. "This is a place where the past, the present, and the future intertwine, and where those seeking answers are invited to unravel the mysteries of destiny.
"It's a place where the magic and power of the cards become palpable, awakening hope, curiosity, and fascination in all who dare to cross its boundaries. My name is Kareena, and what are your names?"
"My name is Mariana," the young girl spoke. There was a pause for the other to introduce himself, but as he remained silent, Mariana took the lead again. "And this is my boyfriend, Lysander."
Kareena almost sighed, thinking it would be just another couple wanting to know if they would be together forever. But then the stars whispered in her ear, "They are not a couple; they are siblings."
Kareena didn't understand the reason for their lie, but she also didn't make a habit of trying to understand people's actions, which often made no sense. She simply picked up the cards from the deck and seized the opportunity to prove her worth to them. "We've just begun the session, and the cards already have something to tell me."
Mariana looked at her curiously and asked what it was. Kareena smiled and charged the fee for the session.
The girl was about to pay when the surly young man stopped her. "Let's go, Mariana. Can't you see she's just a charlatan?"
Furious, the fortune-teller dramatically threw a random card on the table. "I am not a charlatan, and certainly not a liar like you."
The young man gave an ironic smile. "Are you calling us liars?"
"Yes," she replied firmly. "The cards have already revealed to me that you are not a couple, but siblings."
She noticed the surprise in the girl's eyes and realized that, even though she had summoned her brother, Mariana didn't believe so much in the cards. She paid for the session, and this time her brother didn't stop her, but he looked at the fortune-teller with even greater suspicion.
Kareena spread all the cards on the table and asked each of them to draw three cards, which they did. "Remember, the cards do not reveal predestination. Everything revealed here will be the events most likely to occur today in the lines of destiny, but can be altered by your actions," she explained.
They agreed, and she first picked up the cards chosen by the girl. The three objects were only for show and meant nothing to her, as Kareena barely knew the names of each card, but they were the only way the girl could use her true gift without being discovered.
So, Kareena simply asked, and as usual, the stars revealed three things about Mariana to her.
"The first card," she said, placing the paper on the table, "tells me that you will continue to take risks in the coming months."
The girl didn't even blink, and her brother shot her an accusing look. Mariana was about to start defending herself, but Kareena cut her off. "You don't need to explain to me. The second card tells me that you shouldn't trust people close to you, especially new friendships."
Kareena had told two true things about the girl's future, and normally, she lied about the third card so that no one would fully believe in her fortune-telling abilities. This didn't help her reputation much, but the crime of being a charlatan was three years in prison, while being a clairvoyant without a clan could cost her her head separated from her body. After all, who would believe that the stars spoke to a poor and miserable young woman with no family?
The subtle scent of incense danced in the air, creating a sense of tranquility and mystery in the environment, and with that, she felt she should deliver the last truth to Mariana. "There will be mourning in your heart, and the entire empire will mourn with you."
The girl widened her eyes. "Mourning? Who will die?" She took her pouch of gold coins and threw it on the table. "I'll pay whatever is necessary!"
Kareena's eyes gleamed at so much money. With that amount, she could live comfortably for several months without worrying about having customers or not. "It's not a matter of money," she had to admit, saddened. "The cards don't usually reveal names," Kareena explained.
Lysander seemed bored again. "Don't be ridiculous, Mariana. She's just saying generic things to impress you."
"If you still doubt
my card reading, I kindly ask you to leave my tent."
He looked her in the eyes again, and she noticed that the color of his eyes was a vivid red, like a ruby or the flame of a fierce ember. Kareena thought it was a very different and beautiful color wasted on someone so dull.
"Don't be so unpleasant, Lys," the younger sister intervened. "Please continue, and forgive our behavior."
Still angry and thinking about her own expenses that prevented her from kicking them out, Kareena picked the three cards that Lysander had chosen.
"Stars, what will be his fate?" But they did not answer. Instead, they asked her to touch his hands. She didn't want to touch him and found the stars' request strange, but as always, she obeyed.
"I need to touch you for a more complete vision," she said and placed her hands on his before he had time to think and refuse.
A scene, almost like an old memory, appeared in her mind. That boy was no longer in ordinary clothes as he was now, but in the official attire of an emperor and standing in front of a throne. "He is the first prince, the eldest son of the emperor and the brother of the heir prince," the stars explained. In the vision, there was a sword in Lysander's hands dripping with blood, and several faceless people bowed to him. "In the near future, he will seize the throne from his brother. This is his unchanging destiny in all future lines."
"Remove your soaked hands from mine," Lysander pulled his hands away from the fortune-teller with brutality as soon as she touched him. But the brief touch had been enough for her to glimpse his future.
Kareena was speechless and frightened. She knew something would happen today, but she didn't expect to be facing a prince and a future emperor. She asked the stars what to do with that information, but they remained silent.
"What happened? Are you okay?" Mariana asked, and Kareena realized that she had been staring at the boy for a long time without blinking.
"Yes... I am," she said with a trembling voice. "Could you wait outside for a moment?"
The girl looked at the fortune-teller with suspicion and then at her brother, who only nodded without interest. The word "Why?" was written on his face, but she got up and left the tent without asking anything.
Alone with that strange boy, Kareena felt insecure and diminished.
Lysander picked up some cards from the table and threw them carelessly on the floor. "What do you want? You must have realized by now that I don't believe in this card nonsense."
"I don't believe in the cards either," she replied.
He smiled humorlessly. "That must be the first honest thing you've said today," he said, getting up. "Give my sister's money back, and we won't report you."
Kareena looked at him expressionlessly. "For such a rich prince, you're very stingy."
He gave her an intimidating look, and without saying anything, he started pacing around the space. In the corner of the tent, there was a small altar with lit candles and various symbolic objects that the prince stopped to examine. Among the amulets and other items related to spirituality and fortune-telling, he picked up a crystal and angrily threw it on the ground.
Startled, Kareena got up and went to him as Lysander frantically threw several other objects on the ground.
"Stop!" she grabbed his arm, preventing him from damaging more decorations. "You'll have to pay for all this!"
The anger he had directed at the objects turned to her. With fear, Kareena took a step back to distance herself as he took a step closer. Kareena stopped when she felt the cold wood of the shelf against her back. One step away from her, he paused. "If I want, I can kill you right here, and it won't mean anything to me."
Kareena shivered, regretting being alone with him. "Who told you about me and my sister?" he asked.
"The stars told me," she replied honestly.
He picked up a dagger that had been out of sight until that moment. "I want the truth."
She tried to move away from him in vain. "I already told the truth," he raised the blade to her neck, and with fear, she ventured, "And the stars told me that, in one future line, you will seize your brother's throne."
He lowered the dagger suddenly, and Kareena fell weakly to the ground.
"What are you talking about? How do you know I'm a prince?"
"I already said the stars of destiny told me," she replied.
His look was one of disbelief. "I'll find out who told you about me. And I don't want my brother's throne." His voice contained as much indignation as if what she had said were an absurd accusation.
"You don't need to lie to me, because I'm not judging you. On the contrary, I can help you claim the empire you desire."
He seemed like someone who didn't easily believe in someone's words, but he seemed to ponder for a moment. "If what you say is true, how can you help me, and what do you want in return?"
Kareena suddenly felt like smiling. She got up, completely composed, and spoke confidently. "Come back here tomorrow, and I'll tell you how we should proceed. For now, I need to attend to my other clients."
Kareena is a young woman endowed with a unique gift: the ability to see the future. Living in a traveling circus, she uses her skills as a fortune teller to make a living, enchanting and entertaining the audience with her predictions. However, her special ability is not taken seriously by those around her, who view her as a mere charlatan.
Everything changes when a mysterious couple enters her tent one night at the circus. Casting her gaze upon the young boy, Kareena is flooded with vivid visions of a grand future. She sees that the man is destined to become the emperor of the kingdom in the near future.
Driven by her ambitions, Kareena decides that her own destiny is irrevocably intertwined with the young boy's. She yearns to become the future empress by his side and embark on a life of power and influence. Determined to manipulate the events, she weaves a web of schemes to steer the boy's fate and make him fall in love with her.
But soon, she discovers that it's not easy to control destiny and that her actions can have unpredictable consequences. She becomes entangled in a series of dangerous and complex situations, facing moral dilemmas and questioning the limits of her own ambition.