The Showmans Fortune
by Imogen Bond
(Bury st Edmunds)
A killing wind
All of us sat in the old gypsy caravan, huddling together around the wood fire. The old caravan was called the 'Gypsy Moon' and it belonged to my great aunt Ethie. She was very old, around 78 now, but she kept the business going, and planned to hand it on to me when she was gone.
Anyway, we all sat around the fire and suddenly my Aunt Peggie, who was a fortune teller, went into a trance.
'A bad wind is coming!' she said in a most flamboiant way that was almost terrifying. 'A bad wind!'. Now here eyes were rolling so you could only see the whites. 'Terrible wind! Destroying wind! KILLING WIND!!!!!!'
She stopped as suddenly as she started and we sat in silence again.
'Jessie dear!' called mother from the stove. 'Come and peel these potatoes!'
I ran to her with enthusiasm, ready to do anything for my dearest mother. Then I heard a distant howl. It was getting nearer. And nearer until...
It all went black. And my baby brother Kenny passed away clinging to me and saying 'Jessie, me scared' over and over. And when I called out, there was no answer. I was alone. Alone in the dark.
But I made it through. I found my way to an orphanage and brought sister Frannie too. And now we live together in a old fashioned gypsy caravan, huddled around the wood fire, and Frannie, who became a fortune teller, still goes into sudden trances sometimes. But we all sit together, me, Frannie and my new daughter Jackie.
'Jackie dear! Come and peel these potatoes!'