Trip of a Lifetime

I actually think I might have written a story by this name before, but this week it’s a response to the challenge of writing a story with the words “Typhoon, Vacation, Mask, Teller”. This is the strange little story I came up with. Its weird, dark and unhappy, with a spot on fortune teller!


Lynn gripped the arms of her seat with desperation as the plane dropped another few feet. She knew it was serious when the airline attendants buckled in, and the pilot hadn’t even tried to soften the blow with a “minor turbulence, nothing to be concerned about” announcement.

The luggage flying out of the overhead bins was followed by the dropping of the oxygen masks, and she wasn’t sure which one was causing more panic among her fellow passengers. As pried her fingers from the arm rest to secure her own mask, she thought back to how she had gotten here, on the last plane out before the typhoon hit, wondering how it had all gone so wrong.

It started, strangely enough, at a fair, with her playing good Auntie with her youngest sister’s two kids. They were 9 and 11, just tall enough to go on the rides, and young enough to find spending the day at the fair with their aunt, awesome.  It was Brandy’s idea to go to the fortune teller, and upon hearing that Lynn would “win something she hadn’t expected to” in the next month, it was Brandy who insisted she enter the contest that won her the vacation she was on now.

To Brandy, it seemed like proof that the woman they saw was a true psychic, while Lynn suspected it had more to do with Brandy making her enter every sweepstakes, radio contest, and raffle within an hour’s drive. Between that and the half dozen lottery tickets she had purchased in the month following the prediction, she was bound to win something, but the awe was adorable, so Lynn played along.

Her first reaction to getting the phone call saying she had won the grocery stores “get-away” contest had been to hang up the phone, and the second, but the third call the lady begged her not to hang up, so she listened to the spiel.

It helped she remembered this particular contest, making her niece do the skill testing question in the name of math skills, and when they didn’t need any of her personal information on the line, agreeing to do it through the air line, Lynn ended up accepting.

Getting the time off was surprisingly easy, her boss ate the fair/sweepstakes story, and all but demanded she go.  

So she went, and for the first three days of the trip it was amazing, a little hot and humid for her tastes, but well, it was a vacation she never would have been able to afford, the air fare alone was outside her meager budget. 

Then the weather changed, and it took two more days, and then a google search to figure out exactly what a typhoon was.  She still had 3 days left on her all-inclusive, but she packed her bags and headed for the airport.  She expected to have to pay for the flight, but the agency was surprisingly accommodating, and after being bumped three times she was finally seated on what she found out shortly before take-off would be the last flight out. 

She thought that she had been lucky, but as the plane plummeted through the air, she thought back to the second part of the reading she had all those months ago, “something wonderful will turn into a tragedy”, and she thought that the woman might have been psychic after all.

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