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Today's Stichomancy for William Gibson

The first excerpt represents the past or something you must release, and is drawn from The Red Inn by Honore de Balzac:

the evening he seemed unable to disguise altogether some secret apprehension or, possibly, some anxious care. The innkeeper's opinion has always been that this German merchant was fleeing his country. Later I heard that his manufactory had been burned by one of those unfortunate chances so frequent in times of war. In spite of its anxious expression the man's face showed great kindliness. His features were handsome; and the whiteness of his stout throat was well set off by a black cravat, a fact which Wilhelm showed jestingly to Prosper."

Here Monsieur Taillefer drank another glass of water.]

Prosper courteously proposed that the merchant should share their

The second excerpt represents the present or the deciding factor of the moment, and is drawn from The Woodlanders by Thomas Hardy:

disquieted Winterborne waiting in the lane below, Dr. Jones went home and wrote to Mr. Melbury at the London address he had obtained from his wife. The gist of his communication was that Mrs. Fitzpiers should be assured as soon as possible that steps were being taken to sever the bond which was becoming a torture to her; that she would soon be free, and was even then virtually so. "If you can say it AT ONCE it may be the means of averting much harm," he said. "Write to herself; not to me."

On Saturday he drove over to Hintock, and assured her with mysterious pacifications that in a day or two she might expect to receive some assuring news. So it turned out. When Sunday


The Woodlanders
The third excerpt represents the future or something you must embrace, and is drawn from The Lock and Key Library by Julian Hawthorne, Ed.:

shape,--a woman's shape. It was distinct as a shape of life,-- ghastly as a shape of death. The face was that of youth, with a strange, mournful beauty; the throat and shoulders were bare, the rest of the form in a loose robe of cloudy white. It began sleeking its long, yellow hair, which fell over its shoulders; its eyes were not turned toward me, but to the door; it seemed listening, watching, waiting. The shadow of the shade in the background grew darker; and again I thought I beheld the eyes gleaming out from the summit of the shadow,--eyes fixed upon that shape.

As if from the door, though it did not open, there grew out another