Vincze's Harrow Deck Readings
Harrowing number 1: The Harrow Deck speaks
Representing the past: The Dance card, in a perfect match! Interpretation: the stars had all aligned to bring the Defenders to this place. Destiny was on their side.
Representing the present: The Survivor card, representing Khrystos and his need for revenge against the Stag Lord.
Representing the future: The Hidden Truth card, misaligned. This represented a secret that would be revealed as a direct result of the Defenders’ assault… but, it will be a truth that the group would regret…!
What was in store for our heroes??
Harrowing number 2: The Hidden Hand
“Your fingers must walk softly through the Harrow deck,” her mother had taught her. “Careful where you touch the cards,” she had said.
Tonight’s ‘harrowing’ was especially complicated, for Vincze was intent on pulling back the long nets of white that clouded the The Greenbelt’s political destiny. Just what did the Fates have in store for these Stolen Lands, now that the Stag Lord’s grip on them had been broken?
Vincze chose “Charisma” as the appropriate suit for ‘THE CHOOSING’—i.e., the initial round where she and her friends each chose one card each. After all, Charisma is the sphere of influence that includes Family; Love; and Politics.
ABOVE PICTURE: The left-most column represents the PAST. The Eclipse card (lower left) is what is known as a “True Match” in the Harrow, and thus begs for interpretation. The Eclipse represents lost purpose combined with self-doubt. The Unicorn (upper left) is a Partial Match; its interpretation is slightly less clear: a prized fruit is offered for the taking. “Tread lightly through these Stolen Lands,” Vincze channeled, “for old dreams lead the way. Underfoot are the visions lost, sleeping but not yet dead.” Vincze nodded confidently as she explained to the other Greenbelt Defenders that these cards represent the many failed Greenbelt exploration and colonization attempts of the past. These lands were a forbidden fruit—which beckoned to many people then, as they still beckon today.
ABOVE PICTURE: The central column represents the PRESENT. Unfortunately, there are NO Matches in the particular placement of these cards. The Brass Dwarf stands impervious to the danger around him (“is it Tad?” Vincze wonders to herself); the Demon’s Lantern lured an unfortunate man (“the Stag Lord?”) into an intractable situation; the Inquisitor points towards the only way forward (“the one path that led us to confront the Stag Lord?”). Unfortunately, none of these cards can be explained with any certainty. The Present, it appears, is very cloudy… The Hidden Hand that dealt these three cards was not precise…
ABOVE PICTURE: The right-most column represents the FUTURE. Vincze’s eyes widened as she turned these last three cards over, revealing two Partial Matches: the Keep, and the Joke. The Keep symbolizes standing firm when necessary, but being flexible as well. The Joke shows a terror that must be overcome—but not by physical means. Might these cards mean that there are OBSTACLES in the Greenbelt’s political future which are not at all what they seem? These cards, Vincze said aloud, indicate that the Defenders must be exceedingly clever moving forward. “We must embrace the mysteries of the Greenbelt,” she exclaimed. “We must be firm, yet gentle; shrewd, but innocent; heartless, yet we must also have a heart.” She continued: “Fighting fire with fire may not always be the answer. If we are to shape the future of the Greenbelt, we must look for the less obvious answer.”
Perhaps this message was related to that of Vincze’s previous Harrowing, performed just a few hours before the Stag Lord’s defeat. In that Harrowing, the Future contained a Hidden Truth card ominously placed in an Opposite Match position. This strongly suggested that the defeat of the Stag Lord opened a door which may have been better left closed… a secret better left alone… “What is the Hidden Hand telling us?” Vincze wondered.
[As she stepped out of her nightgown the next morning and into her bathtub, these Harrow reading were still on her mind. Suddenly it occurred to her that perhaps the STAG LORD’s FATHER (whom they had released after defeating the Stag Lord himself) was/is the dangerous “secret” alluded to by the “Hidden Truth” card? Or, did the “Hidden Truth” card refer to the fact that after they defeated the Stag Lord, they learned that, originally, his fort was a monastery dedicated to the evil goddess GYRONNA?
Vincze began to worry… Does the Stag Lord’s father pose a future threat to her and her friends? And/or will Gyronna have her revenge upon them? …She shuddered in the cool morning air.]