TRUMP FORTUNE TELLING
(A Beginner's Guide)
By Princess Corrine,
daughter of King Gendo I of Amber, and Queen Haruka of Harad.
Throughout history, Amberites have sought ways to predict the future and
to answer questions that are beyond the scope of our knowledge. One of
the most common methods is to attempt to use the Trump Cards provided to
us by Fuyutsuki in an oracular fortune-telling rite, similiar to the "Tarot"
Oracular methods found on Shadow Earth and other locations throughout Shadow.
There is much debate on the accuracy of these answers and predictions among
the royal family of Amber.
To be honest, no Oracular rite is a sure-fire way to predict the future.
What the rites -do- accomplish, by presenting a series of images and symbols,
is a means to refresh the mind by presenting new possibilities, forcing
one to think in new directions. This is especially helpful when one is
locked into worthless patterns through worry and indecision.
By examining the cards, thinking about them, and considering how they
relate to the problem at hand, they cause you to break down the problem
into descrete, simple terms. You relearn the problem by forming new associations,
and it causes you to consider new options. In this way, Fortune Telling
is not an exact science, but more of an art form -- a guide and assistant
to help you think in new directions.
However, there is something different about using the actual Trumps for
Fortune Telling. Whereas most tarot decks are just stacks of cards with
pretty pictures on them, the Trumps are created by Trump Artists, and are
invested with actual power. An Amberite holding a Trump Card is capable
of connecting the holder to different people and places across Shadow.
They are powerful items, not fully understood (save perhaps by Fuyutsuki)
yet eminantly useful, allowing us to communicate and transport across Shadow
in an instant.
As such, it is theoretically possible that by using the Trumps, one
taps into the persons and places represented by them, and therefore a -true-
future prediction or answer for a question can be obtained. Unfortunately,
there is no easy way of gauging this accuracy, save by extended observation
of results over time. Even then, the skill of the prediction can be influenced
by day-to-day factors.
Based on my own observations, a sliding scale for Trump Fortune Telling
is as follows, from least accurate to most accurate:
As always, your results will vary.
Random Shadowdweller and a Trump Deck they got off the street.
Random Shadowdweller and a Personal Trump Deck.
Amberite and a Trump Deck they got off the street.
Amberite and a Personal Trump Deck.
Trump Artist and a Trump Deck they got off the street.
Trump Artist and a Personal Trump Deck they created.
Advanced Trump Artist and a Trump Deck they got off the street.
Advanced Trump Artist and a Personal Trump Deck they created.
Fuyutsuki with any Deck of Trumps.
(though in his case, his reading may be as intelligeble as any random
Each card in a Trump Deck ends up representing a fragment of experience,
a slice of existance, a set of ideas and concepts and persons that could
be applied to your quandry. Each card is different, each one holding a
custom image of a unique individual or place in Shadow. They are archtypes,
based on what you know of the presented subject, capable of representing
other people or yourself, places and things, or possible ideas and trends.
By thinking about the card and its subject, and deciding how said subject
relates to your question, you stretch your mind to consider new ideas.
Another key concept when it comes to Trump Fortune Telling is that of
"Reversed Cards". Reversal is a way to 'expand' one's Trump Deck for predictions
(especially since the average Trump Deck will only have around 42 cards).
By changing the orientation of the card, it represents a reversal of what
that card usually means. Note that this does not always mean negative aspects
-- a negative card reversed would represent positive things. It can also
represent an opposite of the regular intepretation, or a uncommon aspect
brought into sharp focus.
A listing of the cards featured in the Standard
Fuyutsuki Trump Deck, and their commonly-attributed meanings and
reverse-meanings, may be found in a seperate document. My own Trump
Decks have their own images, but generally follow
the same attributions for each card.
If one wants to, one can draw a single card from a Trump Deck and use the
image on the card as a single "reading" for your problem. This is quick
and easy to do. However, it is more common to draw multiple cards in what
is known as a -tarot spread-. In a spread, each card is dealt into a pre-set
position, and each position has its own meaning. When the cards are examined,
one considers relationships between the archtypes and the position, as
well as between the archtype and the question at hand.
There are many different known spreads, and many ways to go about interpreting
them. Some are simple, and some are hideously complex and time-consuming.
Most common spreads use ten to twelve cards. In this document, we will
discuss the trump spread that I use most often, which has become commonly
known as the "Corrine Cross" by others.
The usual procedure for using the Trump Cards for fortune telling is as
First: Take your standard Trump Deck. Clear your mind of all
thoughts save your current question, quandry, or focus (person or place).
Second: Shuffle the cards, but do not look at them. Always keep
the backs of the cards visible, not their fronts. During this time, if
you are capable of it, place yourself in sympathetic communion with the
energy in the Trumps in your hands.
Third: Finish shuffling, and square the deck.
Fourth: Start dealing the cards out in sequence in the spread,
in numerical order, face up. Keep your eyes closed while doing this, to
avoid any distractions or influences caused by seeing the card images ahead
Fifth: Open your eyes. Study the spread and the cards placed
within it, relate the cards and their positions and orientations to the
problem at hand, and draw your own conclusions.
This spread consists of twelve cards, arranged in a "+|" formation,
and is commonly called the "Corrine Cross". Each location represents a
portion of the fortune. Each card represents various ideas and concepts
(either literally or figuratively) that could be applied to the location
they occupy. This representation varies on the location of the card. They
are dealt in order, from one to twelve.
The Distant Past
-- Origins and sources for the current subject of the prediction, related
to events long ago in the past. When this card is drawn, think about long-ago
influences and memories.
The Recent Past
-- Recent events and influences, from the past few years to the past
few days. Think of the archtype presented in terms of things that recently
-- The current task or situation that needs to be accomplished at the
present time. This could end up suggesting new tasks that you may not have
considered beforehand, that need to be done before your primary goal can
-- Things hidden from view from yourself or from others. This card
represents information that might be influencing the situation, but isn't
The Near Future
-- Immediate things to come. Where you're headed. Relate the card to
the possibilities, positive and negative, that could occur. (Hopes and
Fears can help refine this)
The Far Future
-- Long term occurances and possibilities. Long term goals and fears.
Picture yourself years from now, and think about how the archtypes represented
by the card apply.
-- Ultimate culmination of the question, the maximum potential positive
or negative outcome at this point in time. It usually marks a turning point,
or even a showdown.
Hopes and Fears
-- Variant possibilities, representing both positive and negative aspects
of desires and needs. They relate more directly on a immediate level, and
can swing either way, or both simultaneously.
-- Other people's views and perceptions of the problem or yourself.
It can represent the public opinion of the situation, or a person or group
you need to be aware of whose viewpoints should be considered.
-- Your own perception of the situation and yourself, and what it represents.
Apply the archtype of the card to yourself, and see if you learn something
The Heart of the Matter (The Quandry)
-- The central card, which represents the core of the issue being evaluated.
Relate the image and archtype directly to the question, to yourself, to
where you are and what troubles you're facing right now.
-- Those who are currently opposed to you, singly or in groups, over
the issue in question. It can also represent conflicts within yourself,
that prevent you from taking definitive action.
Written by: Corrine, Princess of Amber
Transcribed by: Philip J.
With Inspiration from: the _Silicon
Valley Tarot_, created by Thomas Scoville, Edited by S. John Ross,
Published by Steve Jackson Games
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Last Update January 14, 2000