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Today's Stichomancy for Nicky Hilton

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Sesame and Lilies by John Ruskin:

something behind the veil of it, which was not vanity. It became to me not a painted cloud, but a terrible and impenetrable one: not a mirage, which vanished as I drew near, but a pillar of darkness, to which I was forbidden to draw near. For I saw that both my own failure, and such success in petty things as in its poor triumph seemed to me worse than failure, came from the want of sufficiently earnest effort to understand the whole law and meaning of existence, and to bring it to noble and due end; as, on the other hand, I saw more and more clearly that all enduring success in the arts, or in any other occupation, had come from the ruling of lower purposes, not by a conviction of their nothingness, but by a solemn faith in

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Ruling Passion by Henry van Dyke:

the room, arranged two or three packages on the shelves, shut the damper of the stove, glancing at Marcel's back out of the corners of her eyes. Then she came back to her chair, pushed her cup aside, rested both elbows on the table and her chin in her hands, and looked Marcel square in the face with her clear brown eyes.

"My friend," she said, "are you an honest man, un brave garcon?"

For an instant he could say nothing. He was so puzzled. "Why yes, Nataline," he answered, "yes, surely--I hope."

"Then let me speak to you without fear," she continued. "You do not suppose that I am ignorant of what I have done this night. I am not a baby. You are a man. I am a girl. We are shut up alone in this

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from She Stoops to Conquer by Oliver Goldsmith:

TONY. I'm sure I always loved cousin Con.'s hazle eyes, and her pretty long fingers, that she twists this way and that over the haspicholls, like a parcel of bobbins.

MRS. HARDCASTLE. Ah! he would charm the bird from the tree. I was never so happy before. My boy takes after his father, poor Mr. Lumpkin, exactly. The jewels, my dear Con., shall be yours incontinently. You shall have them. Isn't he a sweet boy, my dear? You shall be married to-morrow, and we'll put off the rest of his education, like Dr. Drowsy's sermons, to a fitter opportunity.


DIGGORY. Where's the 'squire? I have got a letter for your worship.

She Stoops to Conquer
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 Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte:

lying there myself in the mornings. The idea calmed me somewhat: I lay down. Silence composes the nerves; and as an unbroken hush now reigned again through the whole house, I began to feel the return of slumber. But it was not fated that I should sleep that night. A dream had scarcely approached my ear, when it fled affrighted, scared by a marrow-freezing incident enough.

This was a demoniac laugh--low, suppressed, and deep--uttered, as it seemed, at the very keyhole of my chamber door. The head of my bed was near the door, and I thought at first the goblin-laugher stood at my bedside--or rather, crouched by my pillow: but I rose, looked round, and could see nothing; while, as I still gazed, the unnatural

Jane Eyre