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Today's Stichomancy for Kate Beckinsale

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Underground City by Jules Verne:

Fine roadways led in all directions from the capital. To the north, the coast of the noble Firth of Forth was indented by a deep bay, in which could be seen the seaport town of Leith, between which and this Modern Athens of the north ran a street, straight as that leading to the Piraeus.

Beyond the wide Firth could be seen the soft outlines of the county of Fife, while beneath the spectator stretched the yellow sands of Portobello and Newhaven.

Nell could not speak. Her lips murmured a word or two indistinctly; she trembled, became giddy, her strength failed her; overcome by the purity of the air and the sublimity of the scene,

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

country you get an old man for an ambassador in marriage affairs. He did not know how to pro- ceed. However, one day in the midst of sheep in a field (he was now Swaffer's under-shepherd with Foster) he took off his hat to the father and de- clared himself humbly. 'I daresay she's fool enough to marry you,' was all Foster said. 'And then,' he used to relate, 'he puts his hat on his head, looks black at me as if he wanted to cut my throat, whistles the dog, and off he goes, leaving me to do the work.' The Fosters, of course, didn't like to


Amy Foster
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy:

returning his smile.

Boris quietly left the room and went in search of Natasha. The plump boy ran after them angrily, as if vexed that their program had been disturbed.

CHAPTER XII

The only young people remaining in the drawing room, not counting the young lady visitor and the countess' eldest daughter (who was four years older than her sister and behaved already like a grown-up person), were Nicholas and Sonya, the niece. Sonya was a slender little brunette with a tender look in her eyes which were veiled by long lashes, thick black plaits coiling twice round her head, and a


War and Peace
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 Tristram Shandy by Laurence Sterne:

We should begin to think, Mrs. Shandy, of putting this boy into breeches.--

We should so,--said my mother.--We defer it, my dear, quoth my father, shamefully.--

I think we do, Mr. Shandy,--said my mother.

--Not but the child looks extremely well, said my father, in his vests and tunicks.--

He does look very well in them,--replied my mother.--

--And for that reason it would be almost a sin, added my father, to take him out of 'em.--

--It would so,--said my mother:--But indeed he is growing a very tall lad,- -rejoined my father.