|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Master of Ballantrae by Robert Louis Stevenson:
"Madam," said I, "we are speaking of two men: one of them insulted
you, and you ask me which. I will help you to the answer. With
one of these men you have spent all your hours: has the other
reproached you? To one you have been always kind; to the other, as
God sees me and judges between us two, I think not always: has his
love ever failed you? To-night one of these two men told the
other, in my hearing - the hearing of a hired stranger, - that you
were in love with him. Before I say one word, you shall answer
your own question: Which was it? Nay, madam, you shall answer me
another: If it has come to this dreadful end, whose fault is it?"
She stared at me like one dazzled. "Good God!" she said once, in a
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Street of Seven Stars by Mary Roberts Rinehart:
awakening early, stepped out on to the balcony and closed the
door carefully behind her. A new world lay beneath her, a marvel
of glittering branches, of white plain far below; the snowy mane
of the Raxalpe was become a garment. And from behind the villa
came the cheerful sound of sleigh-bells, of horses' feet on crisp
snow, of runners sliding easily along frozen roads. Even the
barking of the dog in the next yard had ceased rumbling and
become sharp staccato.
The balcony extended round the corner of the house. Marie,
eagerly discovering her new world, peered about, and seeing no
one near ventured so far. The road was in view, and a small girl
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Daisy Miller by Henry James:
Mrs. Walker was flushed; she wore an excited air.
"It is really too dreadful," she said. "That girl must not do
this sort of thing. She must not walk here with you two men.
Fifty people have noticed her."
Winterbourne raised his eyebrows. "I think it's a pity to make
too much fuss about it."
"It's a pity to let the girl ruin herself!"
"She is very innocent," said Winterbourne.
"She's very crazy!" cried Mrs. Walker. "Did you ever see
anything so imbecile as her mother? After you had all left
me just now, I could not sit still for thinking of it.
|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 The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood by Howard Pyle:
but stout Clifton had gone down and Hubert of Suffolk had taken
the third place, for, while both those two good yeomen had lodged
two in the white, Clifton had lost one shot upon the fourth ring,
and Hubert came in with one in the third.
All the archers around Gilbert's booth shouted for joy till their throats
were hoarse, tossing their caps aloft, and shaking hands with one another.
In the midst of all the noise and hubbub five men came walking across
the lawn toward the King's pavilion. The first was Richard Partington,
and was known to most folk there, but the others were strange to everybody.
Beside young Partington walked a yeoman clad in blue, and behind
came three others, two in Lincoln green and one in scarlet.
The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood