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Today's Stichomancy for Avril Lavigne

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Fall of the House of Usher by Edgar Allan Poe:

long improvised dirges will ring for ever in my ears. Among other things, I hold painfully in mind a certain singular perversion and amplification of the wild air of the last waltz of Von Weber. From the paintings over which his elaborate fancy brooded, and which grew, touch by touch, into vagueness at which I shuddered the more thrillingly, because I shuddered knowing not why;--from these paintings (vivid as their images now are before me) I would in vain endeavour to educe more than a small portion which should lie within the compass of merely written words. By the utter simplicity, by the nakedness of his designs, he arrested and overawed attention. If ever mortal painted an idea,


The Fall of the House of Usher
The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Bunner Sisters by Edith Wharton:

seated themselves at their evening meal Ann Eliza at last found a chance to say: "So she on'y had a speck of dust in her."

Evelina understood at once that the reference was not to Miss Mellins. "Yes--at least he thinks so," she answered, helping herself as a matter of course to the first cup of tea.

"On'y to think!" murmured Ann Eliza.

"But he isn't SURE," Evelina continued, absently pushing the teapot toward her sister. "It may be something wrong with the--I forget what he called it. Anyhow, he said he'd call round and see, day after to-morrow, after supper."

"Who said?" gasped Ann Eliza.

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Return of the Native by Thomas Hardy:

The superciliousness that lurked in her manner told Venn that thus far he had utterly failed. He inwardly sighed and felt it necessary to unmask his second argument.

"Well, leaving that out of the question, 'tis in your power, I assure you, Miss Vye, to do a great deal of good to another woman."

She shook her head.

"Your comeliness is law with Mr. Wildeve. It is law with all men who see 'ee. They say, 'This well- favoured lady coming--what's her name? How handsome!' Handsomer than Thomasin Yeobright," the reddleman persisted,


Return of the Native
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:

Angelique raised her face, gazing at the altar as if to inhale the heavy scent of the incense that came wafted in clouds over the two women. And then, in the doubtful light that the tapers shed down the nave, with that of a central lamp and of some lights round the pillars, the young man beheld a face which shook his determination. A white watered-silk bonnet closely framed features of perfect regularity, the oval being completed by the satin ribbon tie that fastened it under her dimpled chin. Over her forehead, very sweet though low, hair of a pale gold color parted in two bands and fell over her cheeks, like the shadow of leaves on a flower. The arches of her eyebrows were drawn with the accuracy we admire in the best