Spring 2000 • Vol. XXII No. 2 Fiction |

Limousine

When Dale's mother was pregnant with him, she went to see a fortune teller, a ninety-year-old Irish woman who lived in a farmhouse a half hour outside of town. "It was like I was stepping into another world," Dale's mother said whenever she told the story, which was often. She did so nearly every year on his birthday, and stood up in the banquet room at the Saint Martinsville Holiday Inn to tell it at the reception for Dale's wedding, a bit unsteady, as much from her shyness at speaking in front of fifty people as from the red wine she'd had with her prime rib. "She had no running water, if you can believe this in 1951," Dale's mother said. "And her house was floor-to-ceiling junk. Newspapers piled up and bags of old rags all over the living room. There must've been fifteen squirrel hides laid out on the sofa and a wall with more crucifixes nailed to it than I could count, maybe twenty, little ones like from a rosary, and big wooden ones. "She took me back to her kitchen and

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