|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Brother of Daphne by Dornford Yates:
"Then it's a compact," I said quietly. "Sealed with a drink."
"I never drank to you this time, Norval."
"Yes, you did," said I. "Only with thine eyes, doll beautiful."
"You forget yourself."
"I remember you. You were wearing a black and gold dress. Sweet
She turned away and pointed to a church we were leaving on our
"That," she said, "is a church."
"You amaze me. I thought it was a swimming-bath."
She bit the lip that wanted to smile.
The Brother of Daphne
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Lily of the Valley by Honore de Balzac:
lamentably, "They want to kill me!--My dear," he would say to his
wife, increasing the injustice of his words by the aggravating tones
of his sharp voice, "if it concerned your children you would know very
well what was the matter with them."
He dressed and re-dressed himself incessantly, watching every change
of temperature, and doing nothing without consulting the barometer.
Notwithstanding his wife's attentions, he found no food to suit him,
his stomach being, he said, impaired, and digestion so painful as to
keep him awake all night. In spite of this he ate, drank, digested,
and slept, in a manner to satisfy any doctor. His capricious will
exhausted the patience of the servants, accustomed to the beaten track
The Lily of the Valley
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Kwaidan by Lafcadio Hearn:
None spoke; but the retainers stared in horror at their master. He seemed
to be quite unconcerned. He merely held out his sword to the nearest
attendant, who, with a wooden dipper, poured water over the blade from haft
to point, and then carefully wiped the steel several times with sheets of
soft paper... And thus ended the ceremonial part of the incident.
For months thereafter, the retainers and the domestics lived in ceaseless
fear of ghostly visitation. None of them doubted that the promised
vengeance would come; and their constant terror caused them to hear and to
see much that did not exist. They became afraid of the sound of the wind in
the bamboos,-- afraid even of the stirring of shadows in the garden. At
last, after taking counsel together, they decided to petition their master
|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 A Second Home by Honore de Balzac:
proof of the benevolence you exercise so liberally and so nobly--"
"To please myself," replied the Count. "I pay for a sensation, as I
would to-morrow pay a pile of gold to recover the most childish
illusion that would but make my heart glow.--I help my fellow-
creatures for my own sake, just as I gamble; and I look for gratitude
from none. I should see you die without blinking; and I beg of you to
feel the same with regard to me. I tell you, young man, the events of
life have swept over my heart like the lavas of Vesuvius over
Herculaneum. The town is there--dead."
"Those who have brought a soul as warm and as living as yours was to
such a pitch of indifference are indeed guilty!"