|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Deputy of Arcis by Honore de Balzac:
"Heavens! what has age to do with it?" said Mademoiselle Herbelot.
"Provided one gets a husband," added Vinet, whose cold maliciousness
made him feared.
"Yes," replied the old maid, feeling the cut, "I should prefer a man
of fifty, indulgent, kind, and considerate, to a young man without a
heart, whose wit would bite every one, even his wife."
"This is all very well for conversation," retorted Vinet, "but in
order to love the man of fifty and reject the other, it is necessary
to have the opportunity to choose."
"Oh!" said Madame Mollot, in order to stop this passage at arms
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge by Ambrose Bierce:
enforcing an erect carriage of the body. It did not appear
to be the duty of these two men to know what was occurring at
the center of the bridge; they merely blockaded the two ends
of the foot planking that traversed it.
Beyond one of the sentinels nobody was in sight; the railroad
ran straight away into a forest for a hundred yards, then,
curving, was lost to view. Doubtless there was an outpost
farther along. The other bank of the stream was open ground
-- a gentle slope topped with a stockade of vertical tree
trunks, loopholed for rifles, with a single embrasure
through which protruded the muzzle of a brass cannon
An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge