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Placement: The Major Arcana

I would like to present an examination of The Tower, the sixteenth card of the Major Arcana, but alas I must postpone this as I find myself in a pickle. A most severe pickle. A great throbbing pickle soaked in scorpion pepper and rubbing alcohol.

To raise enough money for a down payment on our new headquarters, Julen Ibarra, Crystal Balque and I have taken on an engagement to perform tarot readings at a corporate Christmas banquet. However, due to scheduling problems, weather, and my petsitting responsibilities, we were forced to take a go via makeshift dog sled. A dogsled is cramped for two passengers, let alone three, but the kind boy who lent us his GT Snow Racer recommended the following.

“After you get there, take off your gloves and stand on your hands and make toes with your fists.”

I am not nearly limber enough to attempt such a feat, but when we did reach the venue, Crystal Balque succeeded without strain or even a trace of wobbliness. When I asked if she felt better for doing this, she shrugged, stuffed half a fruit cake into her mouth and stole a watch from the wrist of one of our hostesses! I must give Ms. Balque a good talking-to about professionalism when we have the time. At this moment, however, we are in dire straits.

Snow covered poor Julen Ibarra so heavily during the ride that it seeped through and soaked his holiday-themed sweater. Our hosts offered him a room where he could change into something dry. This was the last Ms. Balque and I have seen of him.

As we arrived unforgivably late, our hosts had already called in an alternative entertainment for the evening: a troupe of mystery interactive dinner theatre performers. No one warned us about this. Mr. Ibarra still does not know. He is no longer changing in the other room, and ever since the prop gun made its impressive sound effect, he has set this entire establishment in turmoil. Mr. Ibarra keeps calling the actors to threaten them. Police vehicles surround the building and all three of us have outstanding warrants for our arrest! (due to the events of last summer solstice, which was not our fault in the least.)

Ms. Balque and I hide behind the egg nog fountain, holding branches we pulled off their imitation fir tree, trying our best to look like festive ornamental statues and pondering how we can reach Julen Ibarra and end this madness. I believe we need to search the halls, and then deck him. More to come as this most unjolly ordeal continues…

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