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For [personal profile] thefairymelusine

Today, Madame Destiny is sporting a wrap that appears to be made of brown and white speckled feathers and a close-fitting cap of same, over an ankle-length black dress with sweeping wrap-like folds across her body, leaving a generous amount of admirable bosom exposed. That bosom is adorned with a large Bohemian-garnet-and-seed-pearl pendant on a doubled gold lorgnette chain. Her earrings match the pendant, as do the bangle bracelets on each wrist.

"You want one of my Perisphere-and-Trylon readings?" she says, picking up her deck and shuffling it expertly. "Well, let's 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 depicts a woman with a generous hourglass figure dressed in a black fencer's outfit, complete with a mask that utterly 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 sword (too substantial to be a foil) in a fencer's salute. The card is reversed to you. "This is L'escrimeuse, who was part of the French Resistance during the War," Madame says. "L'escrimeuse was known for her fast executive decisions, which sometimes got her into trouble. One time, she got news that Der Angriff was going to lead an assault of paras into Paris itself, and she stowed away in his plane before getting information from all her sources. The plane was destroyed as planned by British and American paras, and she was fortunately able to parachute to safety. But if she'd stayed in touch with her sources, she would have been warned off." She taps the card. "She stands for the Queen of Swords in this deck. Reversed as the theme of the reading, it indicates that poor communications and related decisions are happening around you."

Madame flips the second card onto the table so that is is to the right of the first. The card shows the eight heavily-armored forms, each in different metallic colors (gold, silver, copper, bronze, brass, iron, steel, and lead) as they blast off into a night sky, rockets blazing behind them. The card is reversed to you. "These are the eight original Guardians, taking off on their first mission to destroy the Sky Fortress Re del Cielo. They were not particularly well-prepared for the mission: they were a privately-funded group that volunteered for the Armed Forces, and so they didn't get the same kind of rigorous training that the Gold Stars and Bulletproof Brigades received. They did accomplish their mission, but they took some terrible losses." Madame taps her chin thoughtfully. "This card is the eight of wands in this deck. Reversed here at the base of the Trylon, I think it means that in the recent past, you have been full of energy and have impulsively taken off with whatever your plans have been, and it has perhaps not turned out so well."

She places a third card above the eight of wands. The card shows a vigorously-built man in a WWI Army-style uniform styled in bold US flag colors, a white star on each shoulder and in the center of his chest. He is in the act of stepping off the edge of a precipice. He's not a handsome man: one eye squints, his nose is large and bulbous, and his mouth is too wide, too thin-lipped, and weirdly asymmetrical. His hairline is receding in an irregular way, and his hair, probably once dark, has gone to grizzle. He has noticeable five o'clock shadow and dark circles under his eyes. In a low voice, with a glance over at another table where an extremely old man sits over a newspaper, she says, "This is the Damned Yankee, one of the first bulletproofs in World War I. The son of a Vermont farmer, he decided to travel to Washington DC and somehow met with President Wilson. And from that meeting came the first incarnation of the Gold Star Brigade. In this deck, he represents the Fool, and in this position -- the supports of the Trylon -- he represents the energies that will get you past your current difficulties: a leap of faith, starting anew."

She deals a fourth card above the Fool. It depicts a middle-aged woman leaning in a doorway, one arm high against the black doorjamb, casually holding something that looks like a cigarette holder at first but it almost certainly a wand. Her other hand holds the end of a long string of cobalt-blue flapper beads out toward the white doorjamb. She's wearing a silvery-grey knee-length dress with a drop waist under a fur-edged black car coat, high-heeled black pumps with buckles on them, and a white cloche hat with a jaunty brim. Her hair is iron gray, but stylishly bobbed with sharp curls along her cheeks. "That is Merlin," Madame says with a smile. "Or the reincarnation of him, that is. Oh, there was so much furor from the reborn Knights of the Round, with them claiming that she must be Nimue or Morgana trying to deceive them. Merlin roundly ignored them, and once told me that she wasn't upset about the things they said -- they were no longer her job, and hadn't been for centuries. And she certainly had more important things to do. In this deck she, of course, represents the High Priestess, and as the Trylon spire, she represents your near future: seeing the path that can lead you to the Fool's cliff, to that leap of faith that will take you on your new road."

The fifth card is placed above the High Priestess. It shows a blonde woman in a blue domino mask, a red button-down blouse, a blue skirt that reaches just below the knee, and a white cape. Her gloved fists are on her hips, her feet are hovering a few inches off the ground, toes pointed and angled like a model's feet, and she's smiling. "I'm sure you recognize Jane Liberty," Madame says. "In this deck, she stands for the World. Her power was, theoretically, boundless: she could take or copy other people's para powers and use them as her own. The drawback to this was that she became a symbol of punishment and even oppression, since she often removed para's powers either for the state or on her own recognizance. Reversed here at the Trylon's tip, she represents the outcome of your current situation: your world turned upside-down."

"So let's look at it all together." Madame touches the Queen of Swords reversed. "The theme of the reading is this poor communication and decision-making around you. And given your recent past--" she touches the eight of wands reversed "--that has caused you to deplete much of your energy, flying off with little or no direction." She touches the Fool. "Your path through these obstacles and beyond is faith and trying for a new start--" and she touches the High Priestess "-- and you certainly have the ability . The outcome is going to be very hard -- chaos, uncertainty, your feet hardly seeming to touch solid ground, being in free-fall. I wish I could tell you that it won't be so difficult -- but it will. This is a life-altering move you will be making. But keep your Fool's faith -- I've never known it to fail when you hang on and, even if you can't always believe in yourself, find people who can believe in you." She folds her hands and smiles. "And I hope that helps, dear."
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