repentant mary magdalene

[Ficlet] Sea-Longing

Urban fantasy/human(ish) AU Eng/f!Port. Saying much more for this is a spoiler, but it’s pretty much safe-for-work fluff.
Gloria is f!Portugal.


Gloria had had her fortune read once, when she was nineteen, home from university for the summer and burnt by the hot sun and her relatives’ expectations for her future. Tarot.

It’d been Toni’s fault that the teller had read the cards looking for a prediction of Gloria’s love life; he’d been teasing her about their grandmother asking her before when she was going to bring a nice boy home. So Antonio had draped himself out over Gloria’s shoulders like an unwelcome blanket, her in a tank-top, him naked from the waist up, their skin sticking together with summer sweat, and asked the tarot-reader what the cards had to say about Gloria and love.

Tarot cards are not terribly direct things, building upon information already known to grasp at answers. To Gloria, they had just been pictures, but the fortune-teller had told their stories for Gloria and Antonio to hear. Major arcana cards, cups, many cups. Ace of cups. Ten of cups. Knight of cups. The Lovers. Gloria forgets the details, but the reader tells her that her future is full of love, with a heartfelt suitor, and tied to the element of water. Perhaps she’ll love a sailor.

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“Magdalena Penitente”  (“The Penitent Magdalene”) (circa 1665) by Spanish painter Mateo Cerezo (1637-1666). Many painters chose the subject of Mary Magdalene repenting, meditating on the brevity of life and the hope of redemption. This version seems so real to me, not idealized at all.