|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Court Life in China by Isaac Taylor Headland:
"Yes. You know, of course, that number five was engaged when a
child of six to the son of Li Hung-chang."
"No, I was not aware of the fact; and were they married?"
"No, they were never married. The young man died before they were
old enough to wed. When word of his death was brought to her,
child that she was, she went to our mother and told her she must
never engage her to any one else, as she meant to live and die
the widow of this boy."
"And did she go to Li Hung-chang's home?"
"No, the old Viceroy wanted to take her to his home, build a
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Fables by Robert Louis Stevenson:
"I would be both judge and hangman for you, my man, and never turn
a hair," returned the Captain. "But I get beyond that: it mayn't
be sound theology, but it's common sense, that what is good is
useful too - or there and thereabout, for I don't set up to be a
thinker. Now, where would a story go to if there were no virtuous
"If you go to that," replied Silver, "where would a story begin, if
there wasn't no villains?"
"Well, that's pretty much my thought," said Captain Smollett. "The
Author has to get a story; that's what he wants; and to get a
story, and to have a man like the doctor (say) given a proper
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Yates Pride by Mary E. Wilkins Freeman:
not, except a baby," retorted Abby, sharply.
Julia wilted a little; but her sister, Mrs. Glynn, was not
perturbed. She launched her thunderbolt of news at once, aware
that the critical moment had come, when the quarry of suspicion
had left the bushes.
"She has adopted a baby," said she, and paused like a woman who
had fired a gun, half scared herself and shrinking from the
Ethel seconded her mother. "Yes," said she, "Miss Eudora has
adopted a baby, and she has a baby-carriage, and she wheels it
out any time she takes a notion." Ethel's speech was of the
|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 Running a Thousand Miles for Freedom by William and Ellen Craft:
but, as we were not safe in the State of Pennsylvania,
and also as we wished to commence doing some-
thing for a livelihood, we did not remain.
When the time arrived for us to leave for Boston,
it was like parting with our relatives. We have
since met with many very kind and hospitable
friends, both in America and England; but we have
never been under a roof where we were made to
feel more at home, or where the inmates took a
deeper interest in our well-being, than Mr. Barkley
Ivens and his dear family. May God ever bless
Running a Thousand Miles for Freedom