I am standing on the top of the mountain. In front of me is the white guinea pig I had been following. Poor thing, I can almost hear its heart beating about 30 times a second and I am convinced that it will die pretty soon. I don’t think that guinea pigs are built for running up mountains being chased by complete strangers.
I am waiting for its instructions. There has to be a reason that it led me up here. It slowly raises its head and looks me in the eyes. I see it opening its mouth and goose bumps crawl over my skin.
It coughs. Then it drops down, still breathing, but apparently unconscious.
“This is not good,” I mutter to myself.
I look around – there’s absolutely nothing on this mountain top. What the hell am I doing here? Chasing after white guinea pigs! It’s fucking freezing!
I turn to leave. The universe can kiss my ass. Giving me dreams about white animals of all kinds and then sending me a guinea pig to follow. Do you know how fast these fuckers are? I’m glad I kept up at all. And then it just drops unconscious? If my destiny is to be mocked on top of a mountain, I’ll take my brother to climb Mount Everest. Or something with a lift. Mission accomplished.
“Uhm, yeah, sorry about that. I told Erwin that he should train more before going on a recruiting mission, but he wouldn’t listen. ‘I’m in excellent form!’ he’d say. Arrogant little guy…”
Turning around, I find a white fox standing behind me, with a clipboard in his hand. I can see my name on it. He’s wearing glasses, perched closely to the edge of his nose.
“Well, it can’t be helped now. So, you must be Mary… Sue? Mary Sue? Good, good. Here’s the thing, Mary Sue. I’ve got a mission for you. Actually not only me, but my siblinghood. You see, we’re in charge… is everything okay?”
He must have noticed my staring at him with my jaw at sea level. It’s one thing to dream about white animals who will come to get you and you’re not sure if that’s a good thing. And when one of them actually appears and you run after it in the hopes that it will prevent you from taking that stupid exam you have been dreading all semester. But it’s quite another thing when you’re standing face to face with a talking fox who keeps checking his clipboard.
“I think I need to sit down.”
“Okay, honey, you’re already sitting. You just fainted and were out for about five minutes. Did you hurt your head when you fell?”
I can feel his paws on my head, softly checking it for any injuries.
“I think I’m fine. Really. I’m okay. I guess, I just have to live with the fact that I’m entirely insane. Must have been a psychotic break or something. I probably should call my mum and tell her that I’m talking to a fox and that I should really get psychiatric help.”
I babble. I very rarely babble. I really must have hit my head pretty hard.
“Don’t worry about that right now. Listen, let me tell you about what’s happening and then you can always decide if you need to go to the hospital. Alright?
“As I was saying, before you lost consciousness, I’m part of a siblinghood. We’re responsible for letting people know about their destinies. Kind of like fortune tellers, only not fake. For some people, this communication comes early on. We tell them that they’re destined to be doctors or fair or Starbucks customers. You see, destiny comes in very different shapes.
“Anyway, you are one of the people who gave us quite a headache. You’re smart, but no genius. You’re okay at everything, but excel at nothing. You…”
I interrupt him, “I know, okay, I know! These questions have been plaguing me for a while. You found my destiny? Great! Because I’ve been looking for it for quite a while. But it was nowhere to be seen. What is it? Is there some position open, which requires okay general knowledge and great pop culture trivia? Something where I just have to read the whole day? Am I actually talented enough to live of writing?”
I get more and more excited. Maybe this trip is worth its while! How often do you get told what your destiny is?
I see the fox shift uncomfortably. Or maybe he just needs to pee. I don’t know. I can’t really read fox facial expressions and body language yet.
“Well, you know, this might… I didn’t make the decision, keep that in mind… I mean. Hang on.”
He gets a small trumpet from behind a boulder and clears his throat.
“MARY SUE! You have come a long way and you have finally arrived. Today will be a day you will always remember because I will reveal your destiny.”
He blows the trumpet, then continues. “Your destiny is …” He blows the trumpet again. “… to be completely ordinary!” One last blow in his trumpet. Then he checks off my name on the clipboard.
“Now, sweetie, Erwin’s brother Edwin will lead you down from the mountain. Have a good life! Ta-ta!”
I’m completely stunned. I don’t think that I can move. I can only watch the fox disappear, while a white guinea pig appears and introduces itself as Edwin.
Dazed I start my way down the mountain, my thoughts going round and round in my head. I was pretty sure before that I would never win the Nobel prize. But this? And he didn’t even tell me what ordinary meant! Is not liking anchovies ordinary? Is it ordinary that I brush my teeth before breakfast? Is it ordinary that I spend all my money on books?
The further down I get from the mountain, the stronger my resolution grows. I don’t let anybody make my decisions, not even a talking white fox. My life won’t be dictated by somebody’s views of ordinary or not ordinary. I will live my own life. And it will be glorious. Full with achievements and …
Shit. Did I just step on Edwin?