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Today's Stichomancy for Ian McKellan

The first excerpt represents the past or something you must release, and is drawn from Under the Red Robe by Stanley Weyman:

you peddling, truckling, huckstering knaves! A fig for you and your shaveling Cardinal!'

The red-faced wine merchant drew his sword in a one-two.

'Why, you drunken fool,' he said wrathfully, 'put that stick down, or I will spit you like a lark!'

'Lark in your teeth!' I cried, staggering as if the wine were in my head. 'And cuckoo, too! Another word, and I--'

He made a couple of savage passes at me, but in a twinkling his sword flew across the room.

'VOILA!' I shouted, lurching forward, as if I had luck and not skill to thank for my victory. 'Now, the next! Come on, come

The second excerpt represents the present or the deciding factor of the moment, and is drawn from The Forged Coupon by Leo Tolstoy:

but in that he reprobated the methods of violence, no matter how righteous the cause at stake, and upheld by word and deed the gospel of Love and submission, he cannot be judged guilty of Anar- chism in its full significance. He could not, how- ever, suppress the sympathy which he felt with those whose resistance to oppression brought them into deadly conflict with autocracy. He found in the Caucasian chieftain, Hadji Murat, a sub- ject full of human interest and dramatic possibili- ties; and though some eight years passed before


The Forged Coupon
The third excerpt represents the future or something you must embrace, and is drawn from War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy:

several different roads available for the French, and one would have thought that during their stay of four days they might have learned where the enemy was, might have arranged some more advantageous plan and undertaken something new. But after a four days' halt the mob, with no maneuvers or plans, again began running along the beaten track, neither to the right nor to the left but along the old- the worst- road, through Krasnoe and Orsha.

Expecting the enemy from behind and not in front, the French separated in their flight and spread out over a distance of twenty-four hours. In front of them all fled the Emperor, then the kings, then the dukes. The Russian army, expecting Napoleon to take


War and Peace