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Wooo, I finally got it written and up! Hope you enjoy this reading!

For [personal profile] the_leaky_pen:
Madame Destiny is wearing a canary-yellow sundress with a fine pattern of white infinity symbols. She's wearing a matching yellow turban adorned in front with a rhinestone-encrusted silver infinity symbol and several small white feathers. At her throat is a plain silver rope chain with a plain silver ankh depending from it, and she's wearing matching silver ankh earrings. She has a few silver rings of various shapes and sizes, and a single silver bangle with geometrical Greek-style patterns enameled on it.

"You want one of my Perisphere-and-Trylon readings, eh?" she says, picking up her deck and bridging it expertly. "We'll have a look at what the Universe has to tell you."

She flips the first card, which she lays in the center of the table. The card shows a grey humanoid figure with no clothing and no features, standing on a cliff, looking out into a starry night sky. In one hand, it holds several masks in a fan-shaped array. The masks depict different human faces, such as an Asian man wearing a military hat, a black woman with perfectly coiffed hair in a 40s style, and a brown-skinned person wearing a bandana. The card is reversed to you. "This card," says Madame, "shows us the artist's interpretation of the Outsider, who is one of the Mystikai. Everyone sees the Outsider as the sort of person he or she is most uncomforable around, and so the Outsider appears differently to everyone. The Outsider is always the underdog, the person who is never part of the dominant group wherever sie is. I always thought it must be a lonely sort of existence.'" She shrugs. "As you might expect, this card stands for the Hermit, and it is the theme of the reading -- the Perisphere. Reversed, I think this means that you have been in isolation, you have been standing apart, and right now you are finding yourself walking into the crowd, talking to people, getting to know them, building relationships. You are no longer standing apart and outside."

Madame flips the second card onto the table so that is is to the right of the first. The card depicts a tall, saturnine white man with dark hair and deep, compelling eyes, dressed in a black cassock, a short purple cape, and a square black hat with a purple tuft atop it. He has one hand raised in apparent blessing. To his right, in the background, there is darkness and the flash of guns and bombs, while on his left, there is a rolling green countryside scarred with craters. The card is reversed to you. "Monsignore was a para working for the Papal State in Italy," she says. "He was a standard bulletproof: super strong, fast, invulnerable, but late in the war, he apparently developed the ability to radiate a 'purifying light', though there's some talk that it was a gimmick to blind opponents. He guarded Vatican City, helping maintain the Papal State's neutrality during the war, and he was known for his fervor in turning away refugees he was afraid would compromise the Vatican's neutral stance. When Italy joined the Allies in 1943, his role, as he saw it, did not change: to protect the Pope and the city. In this deck, he represents the Hierophant: the voice and arm of dogma and patriarchal law and order. Reversed here at the base of the Trylon, I think it means that in the recent past, you have been wrestling with the social order, rejecting it, being pummelled by it. So close to the Hermit reversed, oh, my dear," she says, smiling sympathetically, "I'd say you've had a rough time of it."

She places a third card above the Hierophant. The card depicts a woman with a generous hourglass figure dressed in a black fencer's outfit, complete with a mask that completely obscures her face. Her formfitting bodysuit is black, with a bright red embroidered heart in the center of her chest, and white, very thorny, roses embroided around it and sprawling organically over the rest of her suit. She holds her rather hefty sword in a fencer's salute. The card is upright to you. "This is L'escrimeuse, who was part of the French Resistance during the War," Madame says. "L'escrimeuse was best known for her ability to play any role and talk her way out of any situation -- both completely non-para abilities, I might add. She was undercover for much of the war, playing the parts of male SS officers and high-ranking soldiers, evading the best security the Nazis could put in place and making daring escapes. For one thing, she's credited with the dismantling of several secret research laboratories where the Germans were attempting to create super-soldiers, rather than depending on found paras, and saving the experimental subjects, including a number of British and French paras." She lays a finger on the card. "In this deck, she stands for the Queen of Swords, and in this position -- the supports of the Trylon -- she represents the energies that will get you past your current difficulties: words, action, and decision."

She deals a fourth card above the Queen of Swords. The card shows a group of five men swinging fuming quarterstaffs at each other in some sort of wild melee. All the men are wearing Army uniforms of the common British Tommy of World War II, only colored forest green and modified to be tighter-fitting about the legs and less confining around the arms. Their helmets are close-fitting, with red feathers painted along the sides. "These are the Merry Men," Madame says, "a para group created by the British Army as a sort of counterpoint to the German Army's Walküren. The only problem was that the men weren't really so merry -- they started out not knowing each other, and soon found out that some of them were convicted criminals. The conflicts grew and multiplied, and their commander was unable to cope with them or actually command them. But it wasn't until one of them was killed and several were wounded in a skirmish that the top brass were willing to disband the troop as a failed experiment." She sighs. "In this deck, they represent the five of wands, which is all about conflict. Conflict, setbacks, and obstacles. As the Trylon spire, they represent, I'm sorry to say, your near future."

The fifth card is placed above the five of wands. A man in a white lab coat and brown trousers sits in a chair whose arms are covered with switches, lights, and buttons, and which is surrounded by more control consoles. He is wearing a helmet on his head that conceals his eyes, and there are a number of coiled wires spreading away from the helmet into the consoles. He has a hammer in his right hand and a sickle in his left, and he holds them crossed over his chest. The card is reversed to you. "This is the Russian mad scientist who called himself, in his challenges to the Nazis, Doktor Untergang. We have no idea what his name actually was, but he stepped forward to challenge the Germans and threatened them with annihilation by his mobile death machine if they didn't surrender. Sadly, he built his death machine too well, and it achieved sentience, evaded his control, and unleashed itself on the Germans... and anyone else who got in the way, including some of the Soviet troops." Madame smiles sadly. "What little evidence of his existence scholars have found seems to indicate that he was sent to Gulag not long after the catastrophe. In this deck, he represents the two of swords, which represents blind decision. Reversed... well, it's a blind decision that hasn't been made yet, which makes sense, given that this is the outcome of your present situation. Let's look at it all together."

Madame touches the Hermit reversed. "The theme of the reading is your emergence from solitude, your stepping into society. And given your recent past--" she touches the Hierophant reversed "--that has been a struggle against a kind of dogmatic presence, some sort of social order that is trying to get you to stop fighting and toe the line." She touches the Queen of Swords. "Your path through these obstacles and beyond is decisive action and words--" and she touches the five of wands "--but there is still a struggle in your future. The outcome will be decided in a way that seems mostly outside your control, a blind decision that is perhaps not made yet, or perhaps a decision you will make that will not make much of a difference, no matter which choice you make. I'm sorry that I can't give you a bit more cheer, but the Queen of Swords is such a powerful card, I think that your energies in her area of specialty will win the day for you." She folds her hands and smiles. "And I hope that helps, dear."









Date: 2012-08-08 12:51 am (UTC)
the_leaky_pen: (Default)
From: [personal profile] the_leaky_pen
Oof. That's rough. I think I have to think about this.

Thanks for doing this! I'll have to catch up on the recent additions to Wonder City Stories when I have some time. <3

Date: 2012-08-08 01:15 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] interleaper.livejournal.com
I'm curious, if you don't mind saying, what deck do you actually use when preparing these readings?

Date: 2012-08-08 02:09 am (UTC)
heavenscalyx: (Default)
From: [personal profile] heavenscalyx
I've been drawing from my old Robin Wood deck.

Date: 2012-08-08 10:08 am (UTC)
kore: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kore
Damn, those are striking. And hand-designed, wow....they look almost like old-style fairy tale illustrations. Neat.

I think the only one I ever had was the good old Rider-Waite. And then I think I cut most of it up for use in collages in my twenties. //facepalm And my mother tossed the collages because she thought they were Occult, I think (this from a woman who read Shirley MacLaine's memoirs, WTF). I think I actually have a mini set of them still around that I used to use as a keychain, or something.

I kinda want these. http://www.tarotpassages.com/goldenkat.htm Wahh.

Date: 2012-08-08 05:07 pm (UTC)
heavenscalyx: (Default)
From: [personal profile] heavenscalyx
The Robin Wood deck is very pretty and very traditional -- she riffed heavily on Rider-Waite. But I've always liked her art, and I liked the book she sold with the decks, so I actually have two decks: one in English and one in Spanish. I have a couple other decks (like a hard copy of the Crowdsource Tarot), but I used most of them a long time ago and don't generally bust them out any more. (The Aquarian Tarot was my first deck ever, bought for me by [personal profile] pheyne ca 1986, and I used it well into the 1990s, when I ran through several decks before settling on the Robin Wood. I played with it recently, but reverted right back to Robin Wood.)

I've never managed to get into any of the really non-Rider-Waite decks, though I am fond of the Daughters of the Moon deck (not least for it having two different Lovers cards, one lesbian/kinda androgynous and one straight).

The Kat Black cards are VERY pretty.

Date: 2012-08-08 09:33 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] interleaper.livejournal.com
Those are lovely!

I've got over a dozen decks I've glommed onto over the years, mostly that I've found in used bookstores and couldn't go home without. I'm not so good at reading them; I mainly just admire the artwork. When I do attempt a reading, the deck I usually use is the Cosmic Tarot by Norbert Lösche. The style of the illustrations, sharp ink line with subtle watercolor washes, remind me of silent movies somehow; the pip cards are all illustrated but with completely different scenes from the Rider-Waite. The idea seems to have been to put figures and scenery to the meanings of the abstract cards in the Crowley-Harris deck.

Date: 2012-08-08 10:00 am (UTC)
kore: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kore
Mine felt kind of exhilarating in a zappy way, like when I recently messed with this old power strip T wanted to throw away and got a teentsy shock. Zing! It's like your flesh thrills, it's so weird.

I also really like seeing the little glimpses of backstory we get in the card figures. I wish I could draw.

(I personally seem to get Death and the Star in readings a lot, heh. And Wands. I was personally pleased to get Temperance.)

Date: 2014-01-02 02:37 am (UTC)
the_leaky_pen: (Default)
From: [personal profile] the_leaky_pen
I love seeing the glimpses of backstory too! I just recently found this link in some old bookmarks; gonna have to get back into reading Wonder City again soon; I miss it!

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