The Gypsy By Shamel Mujtaba


I knocked on the door of the fortune-tellers hut. I had waited a long time to come here – many good and great things have been told about this fortune teller, he was never wrong, and always brought good fortune to the lucky individual who discovered him. Barely able to contain my overwhelming excitement I hammered at the rickety door. The building absolutely fulfilled my expectations – it seemed mysterious, yet had a warm air of comfort around it.

No answer.

I frowned and hammered the door again.

And again, no answer.

The cycle repeated at least three times before I got one.

“Ok!” an annoyed voice called out, “I’m coming…” finishing the sentence with a curse word I am not comfortable with writing.

I heard some shuffling, a bang, more shuffling and some moaning before the mysterious door opened to reveal the gypsy. He was six feet tall, had unwashed hair that threw itself in all directions, sleepy eyes that were open and closed at the same time, wore a long dirty mickey-mouse bathrobe and a pair of fluffy bunny slippers – had he just got out of bed? It was four in the afternoon!

“Huh, Wadya want?”

“I come seeking help from the great fortune teller who resides here.”

“He got a name?

“Umm, I was not told but …”

“Cant help ya bye” the drunkard began to close the door on me, but given my predicament I was desperate, so I stopped it with my foot, “please.” I said as I handed him a roll of money. He glared at it curiously and then at me. His hand shot out and snatched the roll out of mine – the slammed the door shut. “And my fortune!” No answer. Not again. The door opened suddenly and he stood there with a bottle of – something. “Ya comin comin, hiccup” ,he said, beckoning me in with a limp wrist, Who says hiccup as they hiccup? He waddled inside, and I reluctantly followed.

We walked through what should have been his living room, there was an old TV that you would see at your grandmother’s covered in socks parallel to a couch that took it upon itself to replace the bed, the wardrobe and the dining table – it was covered in pillows, bed sheets, unwashed clothes and open pizza boxes with half eaten pizzas.

The floor was no different to be honest. We passed into a small corridor with windy – and rather foreboding – greasy curtains. I sincerely hoped I was not about to get mugged by a drunk.

The room we entered was as messy as the first, with an added bonus of cobwebs and dust. In its center was a lopsided round table with a stool on one end and a rickety rocking chair on the other – in its center was a lonely crystal ball.

The drunk crashed down on the rocking chair – remaining still on the absolute edge of falling over on the crescent of the rocking chair. For him it was just a chair. I stood blankly on the opposite side –waiting for something remotely mystical to take place.

“Well?” the drunkard spat, and with a limp wave of his hand he beckoned me to sit.

Not knowing what else to do, I complied.

He began waving and limply throwing his right hand over the crystal ball in a way that the community of gypsies would find despicable.

“what I see, what I see, you’re here to *Yawn* see yer future, you are suffering, but you get a raise and fall in love and get rich then the reckoning comes – yadda, yadda – all of that standard stuff.”

He then moved his arm to the right – stretching it to reach a worn out hat that was just as tired as he was. The threw the hat over his head and eyes and mumbled, “You can leave now.” Then he fell asleep. In literally one second!

I just sat on the decaying stool in shock – did I just waste a month of my life to reach a silly drunkard who gave me a prediction as accurate as a three year old would (if not less)?

Thinking that it was pointless to argue, I got up and began my way out of the room in disappointment. Suddenly I heard a voice behind me, “And Adam!”

I turned around, confused as I had never told the gypsy my name, the sleepy drunk looked me right in the eye and said, “Good luck.” Before lowering his hat and resuming his nap.

About froebelianwriters

I am an English Language teacher teaching O'Levels Edexcel and CIE A Levels at Froebel's International School, Islamabad. I am also working as a Subject Specialist Literacy consultant for the same school. Writing and reading has always been a passion and I try my utmost to instill these habits and hobbies in my students as well. I can be reached/contacted at or 03365287335 Happy reading!

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