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Today's Stichomancy for Robert Downey Jr.

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Light of Western Stars by Zane Grey:

Whatever the difference between her and Stewart, or whatever the imagined difference set up by false standards of class and culture, the truth was that here on this wild mountain-side she was only a woman and he was simply a man. It was a man that she needed, and if her choice could have been considered in this extremity it would have fallen upon him who had just faced her in quiet, bitter speech. Here was food for thought.

"I reckon we'd better start now," he said, and drew the horse close to a large rock. "Come."

Madeline's will greatly exceeded her strength. For the first time she acknowledged to herself that she had been hurt. Still,


The Light of Western Stars
The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Chance by Joseph Conrad:

would not have been too proud. But I had to spare poor papa's feelings. Roderick was perfect, but I felt as though I were on the rack and not allowed even to cry out. Papa's prejudice against Roderick was my greatest grief. It was distracting. It frightened me. Oh! I have been miserable! That night when my poor father died suddenly I am certain they had some sort of discussion, about me. But I did not want to hold out any longer against my own heart! I could not."

She stopped short, then impulsively:

"Truth will out, Mr. Marlow."

"Yes," I said.


Chance
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from A Footnote to History by Robert Louis Stevenson:

from government funds, in the face of His Majesty's express and reiterated protest. In another column of the statement, one hundred and seventy-five dollars and seventy-five cents are debited for the chief justice's travelling expenses. I am of the opinion that if His Majesty desired (or dared) to take an outing, he would be asked to bear the charge from his allowance. But although I think the chief justice had done more nobly to pay for himself, I am far from denying that his excursions were well meant; he should indeed be praised for having made them; and I leave the charge out of consideration in the following statement.

ON THE ONE HAND

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 Madame Firmiani by Honore de Balzac:

"Uncle--"

"I saw your Madame Firmiani yesterday," went on the old fellow, kissing the tips of his fingers, which he gathered into a bunch. "She is charming. You have the consent and approbation of your uncle, if that will do you any good. As to the sanction of the Church I suppose that's useless, and the sacraments cost so much in these days. Come, speak out, have you ruined yourself for her?"

"Yes, uncle."

"Ha! the jade! I'd have wagered it. In my time the women of the court were cleverer at ruining a man than the courtesans of to-day; but this one--I recognized her!--it is a bit of the last century."