HIGHLANDER Card of The Week #14
                           Week of 19 February 1996
             Copyright 1996, Jeff Barnes (barnejd@wkuvx1.wku.edu)

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SCRYE
Event
Restricted to 2

"Play this card to look through target player's Endurance.  You may then 
 choose to shuffle that Endurance."
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Chicago, June 1995...

	I have never believed in the supernatural.

	It seems odd, I know, to be over two century old yet vigorous as one
who is not yet three decades and not believe in the supernatural.  But yet I
cannot.  My immortality and the Quickening are facts of my life, 
incontrovertible and tangible, with no need for faith.  They are reality, 
just like breathing or seeing.  I must accept them in order to cling to 
my sanity -- provided I have not yet lost it.

	Even so, there are times, times when I could almost believe in more.

	Not often, but there are times.  For example, several decades back,
I chanced across a fortune teller while in this very city.  At the insistence
of one of my few friends, I allowed her to read my fortune.  Rubbish, I  
know.  The babblings of a confidence artist.  But...

	I felt a tingle as she traced my palm, then another as she spoke.

	"Yes... a long life you have had.  Look here, at your life line.  
Broken, it is.  You have lived and died many times -- and will do both many
times more.  Nine lives you will lead before the final death embraces you."

	I shot Ellis a burning look.  Surely he had told her to say this, 
for there was no way she could have known.  But his expression was one of
surprise and confusion as well.  I turned back to the old crone, somewhat 
less skeptical but still unbelieving.

	She continued, eyes slightly closed.  "I see a sword, a sword which
means a great deal to you, in your future."

	"How so?"

	"Hard to say.  Hmmmm..."  She retraced my palm.  "Yes, now it 
becomes clear.  Once, it belonged to a friend- no, not a friend.  A mentor.
Someone you respected, though you never trusted them."

	Hassan.  She spoke of Hassan.  Now I was certain Ellis had told her
what to say.  However, he maintained his expression of innocence.  Fuming, I
allowed her to continue, hoping she would give herself away as a fraud.

	"Hmmm... one more thing do I see.  A friend who is now an enemy shall
cross paths with you.  I see a battle, wreathed in fire, and only one of you
emerging."

	At that, I pulled my hand away and disgustedly tossed some coins at 
her before stomping out.  I was so certain that Ellis had told her what to
say, about Hassan's sword, about Taylor, even about my immortality.  That was 
then, though, before I recovered Hassan's sword from Taylor.  Only now has 
the possibility of her reading being truth crossed my mind.

	Only now do I realize I have died eight times...

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	SCRYE is a promotional card given away in the March 1996 issue of 
Scrye Magazine.  It represents another card along the lines of Segur or 
Fortune Teller, albeit one with less control and a number restriction.
You do not get to rearrange the cards in question as you see fit (a loss in
control), and you may only have two in your deck (as opposed to six each of
Segur or Fortune Teller).

	However, despite these disadvantages, Scrye does have at least one
important advantage over either of the other two endurance-rearrangers: its
flexibility.  Segur can only be used on another player's endurance, while
Fortune Teller only affects your endurance.  In contrast, Scrye can affect
either player, meaning there is no need to load both in your deck in order to 
be able to affect either player.

	Another advantage that Scrye has over its two closest relatives is
the depth of its effect.  While Segur or Fortune Teller may "read" and alter
the next six cards, Scrye allows its user to examine all the cards in its 
target's Endurance, thus giving a "bigger picture" view for its user.

	This can have many interesting uses.  For example, if you know that 
your foe is playing a deck based around Pedestrian: 5 Turns, you can look at
where those will be in his/her deck; if they aren't coming up for a while, 
you can leave the endurance alone, while if they are, you can reshuffle it.
This same principle holds true for Dodges, Darii, and so on.

	Another important advantage this card holds is that it can allow you
to instantly pick up the strategy (if any) of your opponent's deck.  One of 
the more nail-biting experiences in any tournament is trying to figure out
what your opponent is up to.  Does he have the Darius/Seduce combos in his
deck?  How many Holy Grounds is he playing?  Scrye eliminates the guessing 
game and is thus an important card to have for that purpose alone.

	Of course, Scrye (as with most deck-altering cards) will have its 
optimal use in a Nefertiri deck, mainly because Nefertiri can instantly 
replace the Scrye in her hand.  Need a defense, but don't have one?  Use 
Scrye to see if its the next card; conversely, all immortals can use Scrye
to see if it's worth exerting for a defense -- or, in desperate times, to
reshuffle your endurance so that you can hopefully find a defense!

	In short, Scrye (apart from being attractive to look at) is one of 
the more flexible cards in the Highlander deck-altering reportoire and is of
especial use in the first meeting with an opponent in tournaments.

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Highlander is a protected trademark of Gaumont Television, used under license
by Thunder Castle Games.  The card text is copyright 1996 by Thunder Castle
Games.  All rights reserved.
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