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LJ Idol week 14: precognition

It was another Friday night. Amanda came home from work, ate dinner, and began the careful process of getting ready to go out on the prowl with her friends. As she carefully applied mascara she hoped for better luck this time. Tonight, she would finally lose her spot as the eternal ‘wingman’. Tonight, she would finally meet a man she could talk to, dance with, and maybe even take home.

The place was numbingly loud, as usual. Amanda pushed her way to the bar for a drink, and then found her friends standing next to a column in the center of the room. It gave them a perfect vantage point to see everyone on the dance floor, and to be seen. Sarah had already hooked a man, apparently. They were standing inches apart and she was twisting her hair and giggling at whatever story he was telling. One down, three to go.

Lindsay nodded hello, from behind her martini glass. “I think we’ll have no problems matching everyone up tonight, this place is crawling with available guys.”

“That is if you decide to speak to a man tonight,” Kelly said, giving Amanda a slap on the arm that was just a bit too hard to be playful. “What about the blond standing in the red light behind you? He saw you at the bar, and watched you all the way over here. Turn around slowly, start with some eye contact.”

Amanda turned obediently and located the man Kelly had described. He was lovely; tall, good-looking but not too, and he was fit enough to be playing some team sport on the weekends. Amanda smiled to herself, and he smiled back at her. Then their eyes met.

She saw him watching sports on the television at all hours, expecting her to bring him more beer when he asked for it, and stay quiet. She saw herself ignored and never as important as whatever men were chasing/kicking/catching the ball. 

Amanda’s smile left her eyes. The blond man lifted his glass in salute and raised an eyebrow asking if he should come over. She shook her head and turned back to her friends.

“Honestly Amanda, what is wrong with him? Sure he may have some huge character flaw but you can’t tell that from here. He’s into you. You have to give someone a chance sometime.” Amanda shook her head again and stared down into her glass. Kelly shrugged, swallowed the rest of her drink and pushed off into the crowd. Amanda knew where she was going, and didn’t even bother turning around to watch Kelly approach the blond man. Kelly had turned comforting the men Amanda wouldn’t talk to into an art, and while she may have been lonely, she certainly wasn’t ever alone.

Lindsay was studying Amanda’s face. “So what was it this time?”

“He was more into his sports than me.”

“He might be more into his sports than you eventually, if you stuck around. Tonight he is looking for something other than sports and he wanted you.”

Amanda wondered again if she should have told Lindsay about her glimpses. But Lindsay had worn her down a few weeks ago after another long night at a club, wanting to know the reason why Amanda never even talked to a guy. Lindsay wondered if she’d rather pick up a woman, if she was a nun, if she was really just that picky, or that stupid. So Amanda had explained.


Lindsay thought it was incredibly cool. “You can see the future? What are the lottery numbers for next week?”

“It doesn’t work like that. I only see a glimpse. And it’s only with men. When I see a guy I glimpse a piece of our future.”

“Do you see the dirty stuff? Are you turning down all of the guys with back hair, because that is totally understandable.”

“No. It doesn’t – I don’t see good things. I see us ending.”

“Ending what?

“I see the end of the relationship.”

“The relationship? You’re looking at a guy across a bar, you think he might be cute, and you suddenly see the end of the relationship? Who says you’re going to have a relationship, who says you’re even going to go on a date? And how do you know it’s the end, maybe it’s just a fight, maybe…”

Amanda cut her off. “I always see things go wrong.”

“Have any of your glimpses ever come true?”


“Yoo-hoo Amanda? Are you still with us here on planet earth?” Lindsay snapped her fingers in Amanda’s face.

“Sorry, just thinking for a bit.”

“That’s your problem, too much thinking. I’m going to leave you to hold down our spot for a bit, and take a try at the dance floor. You need to stop worrying about how things are going to ‘maybe’ end and talk to someone.” Lindsay stepped away, and joined the flow of the crowd moving to the DJs beat.

Amanda looked around the room, making eye contact with several men.

She saw the thin guy in the glasses get along better with her roommate than he did with her.

She saw the man with the great smile tap his foot, exasperated that she was on the phone with her mom again.

She saw the one in the rugby shirt hit her. Hard.

She saw the guy in the baseball cap taking her out to a strip club on a date.

She saw the Johnny Deppish guy bring home Thai food with peanut sauce, after she had told him she was allergic to peanuts.

Amanda looked back down at her empty glass and decided to head home early. She hadn’t answered Lindsay’s final question the night she admitted her secret. She couldn’t say it out loud - that she had no idea if any of her glimpses would ever come true, because she had never tried to find out. Had never been on a date, or practically had a conversation with a man. She didn’t want to experience any of the things she saw going wrong with men over and over. Amanda could never get past the endings in her head to get to the beginning.

***This is my entry for week 14 of LJ idol, my topic was "precognition".  We're still in partner mode and this week I got to work with
[info]__rosieposie  and her entry on "The Place that Cannot Be" is here.***


Eeeee thanks! It means a little that you like it too.

Ah, where a gift definitely becomes a nuisance.

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I love the last lines:

She didn’t want to experience any of the things she saw going wrong with men over and over. Amanda could never get past the endings in her head to get to the beginning.

The initial love tends to make us forget that, one way or another, the endings will come.

I really liked your perspective in this piece. Great job!

Thanks so much.

Endings do always come, but they're also defining, and necessary. And you have to do something to get to them.

Thanks so much.

I really liked this. And identified with it, despite not having actual precognitive powers. Yet.

If you get precognitive powers I think we should all be afraid.

Starting anything is always hard, and would be hugely worse if you knew (or thought you knew) what was going to happen. It makes me glad that I don't have any psychic powers at all.

Thanks so much, I always enjoy your writing so the compliment from you means a lot.

I love it but I hope that sometimes she realizes that you have to have a little rain to have the rainbow.

Exactly. Even if what she is seeing is the end (which personally I don't think they always are) it could be many good years away. Rewards are worth the risks, but you have to jump sometime.


Ooh, I love the really subtle tie-in to your partner's entry! Well done!

Thanks. When I read rosie's entry I knew exactly which piece of it to borrow for mine, I'm glad you caught it.

What a tragic way to live :(

I know, right? Even if an end is inevitable, being too afraid to begin is horrifying.

This feels so very true, and sad. I can't imagine what it would be like if that "little voice" we all have was always this loud! :)

Thanks. Sad is exactly what I was going for, I want to shake Amanda out of it.

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Yet another of the myriad challenges of precognition/dating.

I like how you've left it questionable if she's actually really seeing the future or if she's just talking herself out of dating anyone for fear of how it might end. Deftly done!

The more bits of it I see the happier I am that I am not psychic at all.

Thanks so much, I went through several revisions trying to calibrate her "glimpses" to leave some ambiguity in the mix.

Ooooh I love the twist of this once I got to the end. The last line is just perfect.

Thanks so much. Interestingly this entry kind of built from the last line, or at least that idea.

Given all the options, I'd have probably tried to date the guy "with the great smile" (exasperated that she was on the phone with her mom again). That seems harmless enough!

Interesting take on the subject, well done.

Heh, I liked him too. I was trying to get her "glimpses" to be problems that weren't necessarily the end of the world, so if she would just try with someone she would discover that the issues weren't dire, but could be worked through. Thanks so much.

How sad. What a horrible thing to have to live with. :(

Yes, exactly. What she sees has her stuck so completely she's barely living, which would be my fear of ever knowing anything (or just thinking I know anything) of the future.

I really liked his. It was an interesting take on the topic. I liked the last line a lot too.

Thanks so much. The idea in the last line was where this piece started, I'm glad you liked it.