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Today's Stichomancy for Dr. Phil

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Twice Told Tales by Nathaniel Hawthorne:

"Avaunt, Satan!" cried Peter. "The man shall have his gold!"

Uplifting his axe, he hit the horned gentleman such a blow on the head as not only demolished him, but the treasure-seeker also, and caused the whole scene to vanish like magic. Moreover, his axe broke quite through the plaster and laths, and discovered a cavity.

"Mercy on us, Mr. Peter, are you quarrelling with the Old Scratch?" said Tabitha, who was seeking some fuel to put under the pot.

Without answering the old woman, Peter broke down a further space of the wall, and laid open a small closet or cupboard, on one


Twice Told Tales
The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Chance by Joseph Conrad:

mustn't." She was still more frightened by the discovery that he was shaking all over. Bewildered, shrinking into the far off corner, avoiding his eyes, she yet saw the quivering of his mouth and made a wild attempt at a smile, which broke the rigidity of her lips and set her teeth chattering suddenly.

"I am not coming with you," he was saying. "I'll tell the man . . . I can't. Better not. What is it? Are you cold? Come! What is it? Only to go to a confounded stuffy room, a hole of an office. Not a quarter of an hour. I'll come for you--in ten days. Don't think of it too much. Think of no man, woman or child of all that silly crowd cumbering the ground. Don't think of me either. Think


Chance
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Secret Adversary by Agatha Christie:

"Tommy," said Tuppence softly.

"Yes. Evidently when the right moment came to get rid of him--he was too sharp for them. All the same, I'm not too easy in my mind about him."

"Why?"

"Because Julius Hersheimmer is Mr. Brown," said Sir James dryly. "And it takes more than one man and a revolver to hold up Mr. Brown...."

Tuppence paled a little.

"What can we do?"

"Nothing until we've been to the house in Soho. If Beresford has


Secret Adversary
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 In a German Pension by Katherine Mansfield:

He fixed his cold blue eyes upon me with an expression which suggested a thousand premeditated invasions.

"So that is the great secret of your English tea? All you do is to warm the teapot."

I wanted to say that was only the preliminary canter, but could not translate it, and so was silent.

The servant brought in veal, with sauerkraut and potatoes.

"I eat sauerkraut with great pleasure," said the Traveller from North Germany, "but now I have eaten so much of it that I cannot retain it. I am immediately forced to--"

"A beautiful day," I cried, turning to Fraulein Stiegelauer. "Did you get