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Today's Stichomancy for Nick Lachey

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Tapestried Chamber by Walter Scott:

from dangerous adventures many tokens of decided success. Still, the ancient chief conceived, as it would seem, that his son was scarce yet entitled by age and experience to be entrusted with the two-handed sword, by the use of which he had himself been so dreadfully distinguished.

At length an English champion, one of the name of Foster (if I rightly recollect), had the audacity to send a challenge to the best swordsman in Liddesdale; and young Armstrong, burning for chivalrous distinction, accepted the challenge.

The heart of the disabled old man swelled with joy when he heard that the challenge was passed and accepted, and the meeting fixed

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Secret Places of the Heart by H. G. Wells:

just as considerable powers as I can give them--they'll be feeble powers at the best--but still some sort of SAY in the whole fuel supply of the world. A say--that may grow at last to a control. A right to collect reports and receive accounts for example, to begin with. And then the right to make recommendations. . . . You see? . . . No, the international part is not the most difficult part of it. But my beastly owners and their beastly lawyers won't relinquish a scrap of what they call their freedom of action. And my labour men, because I'm a fairly big coal owner myself, sit and watch and suspect me, too stupid to grasp what I am driving at and too

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Pierre Grassou by Honore de Balzac:

the "Dropsical Woman" toward the window, instead of presenting it full front. The condemned man was substituted for the dying woman--same pallor, same glance, same appeal to God. Instead of the Dutch doctor, he had painted the cold, official figure of the sheriff's clerk attired in black; but he had added an old woman to the young one of Gerard Douw. The cruelly simple and good-humored face of the executioner completed and dominated the group. This plagiarism, very cleverly disguised, was not discovered. The catalogue contained the following:--

510. Grassou de Fougeres (Pierre), rue de Navarin, 2. Death-toilet of a Chouan, condemned to execution in 1809.

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 Dark Lady of the Sonnets by George Bernard Shaw:

competition, one blue ribbon that always carries the highest critical rank with it. To win, you must write the best book of your generation on Shakespear. It is felt on all sides that to do this a certain fastidious refinement, a delicacy of taste, a correctness of manner and tone, and high academic distinction in addition to the indispensable scholarship and literary reputation, are needed; and men who pretend to these qualifications are constantly looked to with a gentle expectation that presently they will achieve the great feat. Now if there is a man on earth who is the utter contrary of everything that this description implies; whose very existence is an insult to the ideal it realizes; whose eye disparages, whose resonant voice