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Today's Stichomancy for Ambrose Bierce

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Misalliance by George Bernard Shaw:

and sits down on it with his back against her knees]._

TARLETON. Old! Thats all you know about it, my lad. How do, Patsy! _[Hypatia kisses him]._ How is my Chickabiddy? _[He kisses Mrs Tarleton's hand and poses expansively in the middle of the picture]._ Look at me! Look at these wrinkles, these gray hairs, this repulsive mask that you call old age! What is it? _[Vehemently]_ I ask you, what is it?

BENTLEY. Jolly nice and venerable, old man. Dont be discouraged.

TARLETON. Nice? Not a bit of it. Venerable? Venerable be blowed! Read your Darwin, my boy. Read your Weismann. _[He goes to the sideboard for a drink of lemonade]._

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Jude the Obscure by Thomas Hardy:

an old maiden resident--and ask her if she would house the piano till Mr. Phillotson should send for it. The smith and the bailiff started to see about the practicability of the suggested shelter, and the boy and the schoolmaster were left standing alone.

"Sorry I am going, Jude?" asked the latter kindly.

Tears rose into the boy's eyes, for he was not among the regular day scholars, who came unromantically close to the schoolmaster's life, but one who had attended the night school only during the present teacher's term of office. The regular scholars, if the truth must be told, stood at the present moment afar off, like certain historic disciples, indisposed to any enthusiastic volunteering of aid.

Jude the Obscure
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Brother of Daphne by Dornford Yates:

the glass screen. The enamel, too, is of the very best quality. Nickelplated fittings, stream line body, detachable whee- er- that is, the waste also is constructed on a most ingenious principle: we call it the 'Want-Not' pattern."

"Ah," she said quietly. " And what's the price of this -er- paragon?"

I glanced at the ticket, knitting my brows.

"Well, it's listed at 'AWK/-', but to you, madam, the price is- "

I looked at her, smiling.

"Yes?" she said, with her grey eyes on mine. Her eyebrows were raised a little, and the soft lips had taken on the curve that

The Brother of Daphne
The fourth excerpt represents the element of Earth. It speaks of physical influences and the impact of the unseen on the visible world, and is drawn from Misalliance by George Bernard Shaw:

and I. We got Papa and Mamma and Johnny out of the way splendidly; and then Bentley took himself off, and left us--you and me!--to take a walk through the heather and admire the scenery of Hindhead. You never dreamt that it was all a plan: that what made me so nice was the way I was playing up to my destiny as the sweet girl that was to make your boy happy. And then! and then! _[She rises to dance and clap her hands in her glee]._

LORD SUMMERHAYS. _[shuddering]_ Stop, stop. Can no woman understand a man's delicacy?

HYPATIA. _[revelling in the recollection]_ And then--ha, ha!--you proposed. You! A father! For your son's girl!