Page of Cups: An emotionally open young person given to flights of imaginative fantasy
Knight of Wands: Trying to rescue the world by imposing order on it
Five of Cups (reversed): The worst thing that could happen actually creates a better situation
Strength: Discipline yourself to follow your intuition
Medicine Wheel (reversed): Start from the beginning and make a new plan. Rock bottom, but a chance to renew
Avery coasted down the bike path and enjoyed the breeze in her face. She smiled and shrugged her red hair back to flow over her shoulders. The sunlight streamed through the leaves and lit the area with a green glow. It was her favorite place, this little grove. It reminded her of springtime as a child when she used to hunt for fairies.
Avery rounded the bend and spotted a man hunched over on a bench. He held his head in his hands and she could almost see the waves of anguish pulsing off of him. She went with her gut instinct and pulled up beside him.
“Hi. Are you okay?” Her voice tinkled out in her sing-song way and the man looked up.
His face scrunched, and he shielded his eyes from the sun. He had two days’ worth of stubble on his chin and tears trapped in the corners of his eyes. His chapped lips parted, and he wet them with his tongue before responding with a simple, “No.” He dropped his head back to his hands with the apparent wish that Avery would just leave him be.
But she couldn’t do that. She felt compelled to aid anyone in distress if she could. “What happened? Can I help?”
“Probably not.” He didn’t even look up this time.
Avery stepped off her bike and sat down on the bench next to the man. “Well, tell me what’s going on and we’ll see if I can’t give it a shot.”
A bark of laughter erupted from the man’s chest and a few tears escaped down his cheeks. “Why not? Nothing else I’ve done has been right. Telling a stranger in the park my problems couldn’t make it any worse.”
Even though she knew he was being sarcastic, she smiled. “That’s the spirit.”
He cast a sideways glance at her, but then plunged ahead. “I just like order. Appointments. People to be on time. Things in their proper place. My world is a well-oiled machine.” His back straightened as he rambled, but then he deflated. “Until it broke down. And I don’t know why.”
“Mmmhmm…” Avery tapped her chin. “The universe is telling you you need more spontaneity in your life.”
“What? No.” He waved his hands in front of him. “I don’t like that. I just said I like order. Surprises are the worst. I punched my brother last year for throwing me a surprise birthday party. I don’t like it.”
“Okay.” Avery thought some more. “Why don’t you be a little more specific. What’s happened recently to break down your machine?”
He ran his hand over his face and groaned. “It all started on Thursday when I couldn’t find a matching pair of socks.”
Avery fought the urge to smile. She never wore matching socks.
“And I couldn’t stop thinking about it all day. It threw off my entire morning. I had no creative flow at work and missed my chance to pitch a new idea to my boss because I couldn’t wrap my mind around my project.”
“Okay…” Avery pursed her lips. “Maybe you should have used it to give you a new perspective. Sometimes it’s nice to look at things from a new angle. Maybe your project needs you to be in a new frame of mind, to really give it an edge over your coworkers.”
He frowned but didn’t seem to have a comeback. “Well. I stayed up and perfected my pitch that night. Then on Friday my car broke down on the way to work. I arrived forty-five minutes late and my boss had already left for the morning, so I missed my second chance. I tried to get a message to him to meet for lunch on me and he agreed. But then he cancelled after I’d been waiting at the restaurant for twenty minutes. Twenty minutes I could have been using to work on my next project if I’d been at the office.”
“Oh, well, that’s okay then. Being the last one to pitch could give you a better leg up. He’s already heard everything else, and your great idea will just shine over all the rest.”
His jaw dropped, but he quickly snapped it shut again. “And then, to top it all off, my assistant put in her notice at the end of the day. So, now I have to do more work to find a new one. And she was great. She’s irreplaceable. She color coordinated my notes.”
Avery smiled and knew why she’d been drawn to this man at last. “I’ll be your assistant.”
She stuck her hand out. “I’m Avery Johnson. I’ve been a junior executive assistant for six years at my father’s law firm. And I think the universe brought me here today to be the change you need in your life. Because you clearly need a change in perspective.”
All the man could do was blink, his mouth hanging open again.
“Oh, and I can color-coordinate with the best of them.”