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Today's Stichomancy for Jet Li

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Cruise of the Jasper B. by Don Marquis:

Barnstable, it is painful to me to have to remind you of it, but your attitude forces me to an equal directness. The fact that Logan Black is now a captive is due to his efforts to recover certain evidence which may be used against him. This evidence I discovered and defended, and this evidence I now hold in my possession."

Wilton Barnstable was about to retort, perhaps heatedly, but Cleggett, generous even while determined to have his own way, hastened to add: "Do not think, Mr. Barnstable, that I minimize your work, or your assistance--but, after all, what am I demanding that is unreasonable? If Logan Black dies by my hand,

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Tao Teh King by Lao-tze:

acts of crafty dexterity that men possess, the more do strange contrivances appear; the more display there is of legislation, the more thieves and robbers there are.

3. Therefore a sage has said, 'I will do nothing (of purpose), and the people will be transformed of themselves; I will be fond of keeping still, and the people will of themselves become correct. I will take no trouble about it, and the people will of themselves become rich; I will manifest no ambition, and the people will of themselves attain to the primitive simplicity.'

58. 1. The government that seems the most unwise, Oft goodness to the people best supplies;

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Barnaby Rudge by Charles Dickens:

great bunches of rusty keys, fragments of iron, half-finished locks, and such like things, which garnished the walls and hung in clusters from the ceiling.

After a long and patient contemplation of the golden key, and many such backward glances, Gabriel stepped into the road, and stole a look at the upper windows. One of them chanced to be thrown open at the moment, and a roguish face met his; a face lighted up by the loveliest pair of sparkling eyes that ever locksmith looked upon; the face of a pretty, laughing, girl; dimpled and fresh, and healthful--the very impersonation of good-humour and blooming beauty.


Barnaby Rudge
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 Elixir of Life by Honore de Balzac:

the chamber of death, his whole soul brimming over with hideous selfishness. He found all his household busy there. "His lordship" was to lie in state to-morrow; all Ferrara would flock to behold the wonderful spectacle; and the servants were busy decking the room and the couch on which the dead man lay. At a sign from Don Juan all his people stopped, dumfounded and trembling.

"Leave me alone here," he said, and his voice was changed, "and do not return until I leave the room."

When the footsteps of the old servitor, who was the last to go, echoed but faintly along the paved gallery, Don Juan hastily