It’s the assistant again. Hi.

Here’s another entry I found. I’m uploading it on my way to the airport. A representative of SAUCE’s sister organization, the Kinship of Experts in Tea, Coffee and Herbs’ Unfailing Predictions (KETCHUP) is flying in to rescue our friends, who disappeared into the void after a botched home exorcism. I’ve never met this person. I’m not even sure of their name. Everyone I talked to over the phone was so hopped-up on caffeine that I barely understood a word.

Wish us luck.


Placement: The Minor Arcana


True to the Swords suit as a whole, this ten is especially dramatic. In decks inspired by the much-celebrated Pixie Smith illustrations, a corpse lies face-down on a desolate beach. The swords pierce so deeply in its back that they can stand on end in the victim’s flesh.

In some variants, the body bleeds out, in others it is covered in a red blanket, to convey the meaning while dampening the querent’s initial shock. One tarot reader from Winnipeg (who shall remain anonymous) had the ambulance on speed dial for whenever anyone drew this card. Police naturally investigated her for murder after the eighth customer who died at her table. They found nothing, of course, but also… nothingness. We in the tarot community pray that Constable Minnie Butterworth, sole survivor of the mass existential crisis that followed, may yet wake from her coma.


Right side up:

There is nothing subtle or ironic in the Ten of Swords’ imagery. The insufferable Pollyannas among us are quick to insist that the Death card symbolizes change rather than literal death. They do not say the same for the Ten of Swords.


Upside down:

Ten of Swords reversed indicates that while your extensive troubles will not kill you so much as linger for a long, long, long, long, long, long, long, long time. In other interpretations, the fear of potential ruin will ruin you. If you find the Ten of Swords reversed in your spread, make sure to shut down every possible doubt that may cross your brain. Every single one. If necessary, avoid using your brain altogether. Refrain from reading, writing, mathematical problems, crossword puzzles, video games, RPGs, board games* or watching any media in the Awards Bait genre. If anyone asks you a question, simply plug your ears and scream LALALALALALA I CAN’T HEAR YOU! GO AWAY!


*With exception of Candy Land, Hungry Hungry Hippos and its sequels, Ravenous Hippos, Starving Hippos, The Great Hippo Famine, Please God Won’t Someone Feed These Poor Hippos Already, and Cannibal Hippo Island.


Classic Ten of Swords deaths:

  • Displeasing the senators of Rome
  • Finding a needle in a needle stack
  • Shishkabobulated
  • Wearing capped teeth in Sunnydale, California
  • Unlicensed Acupuncture