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Fiction Excerpt: “The Wizard’s Daily Horoscope”

By Maria V. Snyder

Illustrated by Matt Hughes
from Black Gate 11, copyright © 2007 by New Epoch Press. All rights Reserved.

Monday

VIRGO: Today’s the perfect day to make a change in your life. Stop waiting around for a proposal. Do something drastic that will send a wake up call to your beloved, causing him to realize how precious you are. Tip: Buy a long white gown that moves alluringly in the wind. Beware: Sharp tongues and well-meaning advice.

SAGITTARIUS: Your keen senses will be alerted when danger taints the wind. You will be called to take up spear and sword to rescue a friend. Seize the opportunity, don’t hesitate to leave immediately or gossip will be your undoing. Tip: Unpack and clean your leather armor. Beware: Overindulgence in wine and spirits.

GEMINI: Just when life has finally settled down in a comfortable routine, you will find a treasure. While this may seem like a wonderful gift, it will only lead to trouble. You’re at a crossroads in your life, proceed with care. Tip: Feast well tonight. You’ll need your strength. Beware: The siren’s call.


Tuesday

VIRGO: Ignore those who try and distract you from your plans. Follow your instincts and find a location where you will stand out. Your white dress will glow in the moonlight, and you will become a bright beacon to the one you seek. Tip: Have patience, your fate will arrive on silent wings. Beware: Sharp claws and black soot.

SAGITTARIUS: The sound of screaming will wake you in the middle of the night. Take charge of the situation, and calm down the women and children. Determine what happened and take action. Tip: Saddle your best horse, and pack extra weapons. Beware: The comforts of inn and women. They will distract you from your journey.

GEMINI: You will see a bright moonlit diamond in the midst of a dark field. It would be best to fly past, but your curious nature will overcome caution. Once you commit, you will see how pure the treasure is, and supernatural forces will reign in your hot blood. You will be unable to resist snatching her and bringing her back to your cave. Tip: Ignore the horrendous noise that will emanate from her lips. Beware: Others of your kind who will attempt to steal your prize.


Wednesday

VIRGO: Stay true to your plans even when things are not going as you had hoped. Your steamy surroundings might not be luxurious, but you can improvise. Shedded items like scales and teeth will make a lovely coat and belt for your soon-to-be fiancé. Tip: Keep busy to distract yourself from the foul odors. Beware: Cutting and scraping your skin. The smell of blood may cause an untimely end.

SAGITTARIUS: Ride hard and put in extra time on the road. Sharpen your weapons and prepare your plan of attack. Stay focused and do not be slowed by lingering doubts. Keep your goal in mind as you overcome all hardships. Tip: Take care of your horse. Beware: Stomach parasites. Boil all drinking water before consumption.

GEMINI: Today you will feel conflicted and moody. You are enamored by your new guest, but know she will only cause trouble. Either extend your hospitality or have her for dinner; time is running out. Tip: Never turn your back to the door. Beware: Guests are like carrion, after three days they begin to smell irresistible.


The complete version of “The Wizard’s Daily Horoscope” appears in Black Gate 11.
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