Posts Tagged ‘premonitions’

Sometimes I wonder if I made the right choice in how I first explained my psychic powers. When I realized I could read minds, telling the truth scared me to death, so I covered it up by telling people I had premonitions. Sure, that was a big lie, but it seemed close enough to the truth that I could get away with it.

Now I’m not so sure. Having ‘premonitions’ comes with its own set of problems. People expect me to see into the future… or at least some version of it. They also expect me to have some kind of ability to read more into a situation based on the ‘vibes’ I get from my premonitions. That can be pretty complicated, and it isn’t easy keeping everything straight.

If people knew I could read minds, they wouldn’t have so many unreasonable expectations. Of course, they would also want to stay as far away from me as possible. So maybe lying about it wasn’t such a bad idea. Still… it isn’t easy any way you look at it.

But, after what happened the other day, I think I’ve changed my mind. Let me explain…

I got a phone call from a woman who wanted my help with settling a family matter involving her deceased father’s estate. Between her and her siblings, there was an argument about who was supposed to inherit a specific family heirloom.

I wasn’t sure how I could help with that, but the woman insisted I ‘consult’ with them by saying my agency was called “Shelby Nichols Consulting,” so it was part of my advertising. She also stated that she hoped I could use my premonitions to determine which child their grandmother had intended to leave the heirloom with. How could I argue with that?

I arrived at the woman’s home and found all three siblings there. The oldest, Sarah, was the one who’d called me. Her sister, Jane, came next, and the younger brother, Michael, brought up the rear. I picked up pretty fast that Michael was tired of all the bickering between his two sisters. He’d had enough, and hoped that my involvement would end things once and for all.

Under that layer of thought, I picked up a thread of satisfaction that he’d have the final say in the matter, and he couldn’t wait to see the surprise on his sister’s faces. I wasn’t sure what he meant by that, but I looked forward to finding out.

After the introductions were made, Sarah asked me to sit down on the couch, and motioned toward a wooden jewelry box. “The heirloom is in there. It’s a necklace with a two-carat teardrop ruby that belonged to our grandmother. She claimed it was given to her mother from an Indian Maharajah when she lived in India as a child. As the oldest daughter, it should go to me, but Jane doesn’t agree.”

Jane’s lips flattened. “That’s because Grandma Lucy told me I could have it. You know how close we were, especially at the end. I thought she told Papa, but he never mentioned it in his will.”

“What did the will say?”

“That everything was to be divided up evenly between the three of us. But I’m willing to give up a portion of my inheritance to compensate the others, if that will help.”

“That sounds reasonable,” I said.

Sarah shook her head. “But it’s always been handed down to the firstborn daughter. That’s me. Jane can take the rocking chair, and Michael can take the grandfather clock. They’re comparable in value.”

Jane gasped. She was thinking that the rocking chair was hardly comparable to either of those items. Sure, it was handmade and carved with lovely vines, but that didn’t mean it was on the same level as the ruby. Of course, what did she expect from Sarah? As the oldest, she was always throwing her weight around.

“Why don’t we let Shelby have a look at the necklace?” Michael asked, his eyes bright with mischief. “Maybe touching it will give her a premonition about who it really belongs to?”

Sarah frowned, but turned to the box and flipped it open. Her hand flew to her mouth. “It’s gone!” Sarah turned to Jane. “You took it!”

“No I didn’t. You’ve had it all this time. You must have planned this. You’re hiding it somewhere so you can keep it from me.”

“I would never do that!!”

While they argued back and forth, I glanced at Michael, who took perverse satisfaction in seeing his sisters fighting. He was thinking how easy it had been to take the necklace earlier while his sisters had been arguing in the kitchen. They’d always been competitive, but they should be ashamed. His grandmother would have hated seeing them bicker and fight over a piece of jewelry.

He’d thought hiring me was going overboard, and he’d hoped his sisters would at least try to act civilly to each other for my sake. But look at them now. It was pathetic. Neither of them deserved it, but if he had to pick, he’d want Jane to have it before Sarah. Jane had always been the nicer of the two.

“Excuse me,” I said, breaking into the argument. “I know where it is.”

They all froze and turned to stare at me.

I sent them a smile and glanced at Michael with a raised brow. “Michael has it in his pocket.” I held out my hand. “Please hand it over.”

His jaw dropped open, but he did as I asked and set it in my palm. I examined the ruby and held it in my hand for a moment before closing my eyes and taking a couple of deep breaths. I waited for a good, long minute before opening my eyes, hoping to make them believe I was communing with the spirits.

“Your Grandmother is not pleased with how you’ve handled this. Because of that, it will not go to either of you, but rather, to Michael’s daughter.” I turned my gaze to him, hoping my hunch paid off. “How old is she now?”


“Good. Then that’s settled.” I glanced at Sarah and Jane. “If you want to honor your grandmother, the best way to do that is to treat each other with love and kindness.”

Before I could say another word, I heard a voice in my mind. Bravo Shelby… Bravo.

I snapped my mouth shut and blinked. After a quick swallow, I gave them what I hoped was a smile. “I’ll send you my bill.” With that, I swept out of the house and outside into the cool evening air. My breathing might have come a little faster than I liked, but at least my heart was slowing down.

Still, what the freak? Maybe saying I had premonitions was closer to the truth after all.

Last week, Billie Jo Payne told me that she was doing a podcast with the newspaper. It was something new they were trying out and she wanted me to be her first guest. Feeling honored that she thought I was guest-worthy, naturally I agreed. I thought we’d be discussing her latest case with the Attorney General’s office and how she helped blow it wide open (with my help of course). Boy, was I ever wrong. The interview happened just this morning. This is how it went:

Billie Jo Payne: Joining me today is acclaimed private investigator, Shelby Nichols. Besides working as a paid consultant for the police, she has her own agency, and has been instrumental in solving several high-profile cases. Her latest involved an unsolved murder, which Shelby solved in a matter of days. She was also instrumental in helping me with my own investigation into the Attorney General’s office. How does she do it? What is her secret that gives her the edge over others who have tried and failed? Now is our chance to find out.

Thank you, Shelby, for agreeing to join me for an interview today. With your track record, you have become something of a phenomenon. Most people would agree that you have an uncanny ability to solve cases. Almost like a sixth sense. Is this something you were born with, or did you grow into it as you’ve honed your skills?

Shelby: Oh, I think you’re giving me more credit than I deserve here. I mean, most cases are solved after a lot of hard work and effort. I just happen to have a knack for figuring things out.

Billie: Is that why you got started in the P.I. business?

Shelby: Actually, I’m more of a consultant, but yes, I suppose that’s correct. I started helping the police after I was involved in a bank robbery. Since I was the only witness who could identify the bank robber, he tried to kill me, but as you can see, he didn’t succeed. While I was involved with that case, I spent a lot of time at the police station, and began helping them with a few little things here and there. That’s where I found out I had a ‘knack’ for it.

Billie: By ‘knack’ do you mean premonitions? That’s what you call it, isn’t it?

Shelby: Uh…yes…that’s what I call it.

Billie: What was the first “real case” you solved?

Shelby: Well…I think it was the time I helped the police with some stolen art.

Billie: That’s right. That’s when I first heard of you. Didn’t they put a plaque up in the museum with your name on it or something?

Shelby: Yes. It was a surprise to be honored that way.

Billie: (chuckles) Well, if you say so, but… shouldn’t having premonitions make it kind of hard to surprise you? I mean…isn’t that what it means to have premonitions? I’m sure everyone would love to know how that works. Could you explain that to us?

Shelby: Um…I’ll try, but it’s pretty abstract.

Billie: That’s fine, just do your best. Anything you offer will be great.

Shelby: Hmm…okay, but once I get done, just remember you asked for it. Because…I had a premonition that you were going to put me on the spot like this, but I mostly blew it off because you’re a friend and all, but I should have followed my instincts and turned you down.

Billie: Huh! Well…I guess you were right about that, but if you ask me, that’s more like deductive reasoning. So what you’re saying is your premonitions are more like a gut reaction, or instincts. You don’t actually see into the future?

Shelby: No, not really. I probably should have called what I do something else, like intuition. Maybe that’s a better word for it.

Billie: Shelby! How can you say that? I think what you do is lots better than intuition. I mean, I’ve seen you in action. You know things that no one else could possibly figure out without some kind of extra-sensory perception.

Shelby: Oh…so now you’re calling it ESP?

Billie: That might make more sense.

Shelby: What?

Billie: Just think about it…there are times when you get into a lot of trouble. If you had a premonition that it would be trouble…why would you still do it? So maybe ESP is better.

Shelby: Geez, Billie Jo. I can see now that my premonition about coming here was right and I should have listened to it.

Billie: So you really don’t know when it’s a premonition? Don’t you get some kind of a little ‘zing’ or a vision? You told me once that sometimes you saw things in your mind that meant something about a case, if only you could figure out how it fit in the puzzle.

Shelby: I think I’m done with this interview. (un-clips the microphone)

Billie: Wait…don’t go…I’ve still got questions…

Shelby: Bye.

Billie: Well, thanks for joining us everyone. Next time we’ll be interviewing Detective Harris from the police department…wait, what are you doing? You can’t take my microphone…I’m not done…

Well – that’s what happened this morning, and I’m still not over it yet. You can imagine how terrified I was when Billie started asking about my “secret” and how I solved cases. I never thought she would put me on the spot like that… and what did I do? I left! Now everyone will think I’m a jerk…and I’ll hear it all! Remind me not to do that again. Unless it’s something like The Today Show. I don’t think I could turn Matt Lauer down…