Sagas Among the Arcana: If you just tried harder . . .

This week’s 3 card reading  (using the White Numen: Sacred Animal Tarot by AlbaBG):

8 of pentacles – high standards

8 of swords – self-confinement

7 of wands – control






“You know if you would just work harder . . .”

The boy has heard it many times in his short seventeen years of life. Teachers, parents, parents’ friends, friends, girlfriends, and now law enforcement.

The policewoman at the desk is giving him a lecture about something — he doesn’t care. All he did was steal a pack of Cheetos. He was hungry and he wasn’t fond of his mom’s Sunday stew. He tells the policewoman such as she’s about to hand him a pamphlet for some troubled youth program, and she throws him a scathing frown. Her eyebrows quirk up.

“Yes, now, it’s a pack of Cheetos, but two weeks ago it was . . .” and she continues to list off all his transgressions from the past month. If he doesn’t stop her soon she’ll get into the previous years as well. He isn’t able to, though, because she’s obstinate. By the end of it all, she gives him a warning.

“Soon it won’t be juvie anymore.”


He stole a chicken. And now his hands are being tied behind his back. His girlfriend raises her eyebrows at him eerily akin to the policewoman from a year ago.

They were out on a date, and the police found him to arrest him for the chicken he kidnapped yesterday.

Before she can say something, like seriously babe? he takes action himself. 

“We’re through.” He wants to spit in her face to gross out the police and throw her off her game, but he still kind of likes her and doesn’t want to ruin her day anymore. She’s about to fight back, perhaps to disagree with his statement because unlike him she’s loyal to a fault, but he’s already in the car and being driven to jail if the policewoman from last year is to be trusted. He is an adult now, after all.

He’s not too upset about the breakup (and definitely not about the stolen chicken). This girlfriend had said it too. 

“You know, babe, if you just tried harder . . .”


Really, all of their standards are just much too high for him. 

That’s the problem he tells himself as he socks this douche in the face. The guy’s teeth are crooked now; he probably tastes blood. Man shouldn’t have taken his beer like that.

His current girlfriend looks at him horrified, “Dude, what the hell?

She’s thoroughly pissed now. He can sense it. He knows that she just wanted a night to rewind after all the exams she just had. She’s kind of the studious type so he doesn’t know what she’s doing wasting her time on him. Maybe she thinks dumbasses are sexy. He should just save her the trouble and dump her like his girlfriend from four years ago.

He doesn’t have the chance to, though. The other guy comes back to punch him. It’s a nasty hit, and he doesn’t feel like he’ll be able to chew again. 

He plans on paying the favor back because for once in his life he needs to be on top of some situation. Also, he needs to defend his honor in front of the girl he’s planning to dump in just a few minutes. 

But he doesn’t have the chance to do either as he slips on glass, and suddenly his head feels warm and sticky. He hears his girlfriend’s panicked voice, unused to being in such situations, and sees the smirk on that bastard’s face.

In the end, he decides he’s tired and lets his eyes flutter, anticipating an awakening in his favorite holding cell.


Suparna Hande is a junior majoring in Creative Writing & Literature and Asian Studies. Her current series, Frivolous Fairy Tales for Modern People, features short fiction written in the well-known fairytale form, but in a modern context. Her pervious series, Sagas Among the Arcana, included poetry and fiction based on weekly tarot readings. In her free time, she enjoys playing the violin and dancing.

Leave a Reply

Be the First to Comment!