Although I mentioned in my “Knights’ Crossing” post that if the querent has more than one question or topic area in mind I will default to the Grand Tableau, I can see the appeal of including two topic cards in an abbreviated spread. With more than two you’re likely to wind up in a GT anyway depending on how the topic cards are distributed, so I wouldn’t take it farther than that. Having two subjects creates opportunities for linking different areas of the layout, except where the rows are separated with no intervening cards. If there is no connection, the two series could simply be read as discrete circumstances with no cross-pollination, but if there is direct communication between rows it would be reasonable to see the two topics as playing off and modifying one another in a cooperative way. This could furnish cross-linked knighting arrays between topic cards as well.
I’m also thinking that, when the topic-card rows are widely separated and there is no immediate connection, it might be useful to lay “bridging” columns or diagonals between the two cards, or at least between the rows, to create additional intersecting and mirroring scenarios. In this way the rows would not have to be adjacent to deliver an expanded interpretive palette. This is all part of my effort to deconstruct the Grand Tableau in ways that allow topic cards to surface naturally during the draw when fewer cards are used. Here is an example layout showing what I’m talking about. The question was “What are my chances of winning or otherwise receiving a lot of money?” (This is a hypothetical question because I don’t gamble, I’m retired and I don’t have any lawsuits pending.) I used the Fish as “money”and the Clover as “luck” for the topic cards.
All images copyright Lynne Boyle
Because the Clover appeared in the second row and the Fish in the fourth row, we have a near-approximation of a 9×4 GT here, with the two 3×3 squares filling up most of the layout, although the topic cards only interact directly through a single instance of knighting and indirectly through intersection. Among the cards that aren’t peripheral to the action, only the Scythe is not part of either of the topical squares or of one of the two topic rows, but it actually turns out to be pivotal because it is in the position to which both of the topic cards knight; therefore I didn’t turn it face down. It seems to be saying that, despite all else, any monetary gain will be whittled down in some fashion. The Fish and the Clover intersect “on the diagonal” at the Birds, suggesting that any mention of good fortune might only be hearsay, but the chains also converge at the High Tower (government intervention?), indicating that income taxes could take the bulk of any windfall.
The Clover’s square intimates that a promotion at work could be forthcoming (Storks-Clover-Moon), but the Mice below the Clover is in cahoots with the High Tower (the administration) through knighting to diminish the benefit (Sun-Clover-Mice). The Mice also knights to the Birds, reinforcing the “too good to be true” perception, while the Birds-Clover-Whip series could mean that malicious gossip is blowing things out of proportion. But the Clover also knights to the Bouquet and the Ring, so there could still be some promotional reward involved. With Sun mirroring Clouds, however, I wouldn’t count on it being dazzling, and perhaps not worth the additional responsibility. The Rider-Clover-House series with Rider knighting to the Ring, the Sun and the Moon implies bringing good news home from work. Overall, this looks like an employment advancement situation that offers the chance of a modest raise.
The Fish enjoys only a partial square because there weren’t enough cards left to place below it and fill out all nine positions. So the row containing the Fish and its cross-connections to the Clover are the most relevant features from that perspective. The Stars-Snake-Cross-Fish series gives the impression that wages have been struggling to keep up with expectations, and some form of written offer could spell relief (Letter-Key-Bouquet). The bright side of the Clouds facing the Bouquet may be showing the outlook for improvement clearing up, but Clouds knighting to Storks and Moon and presenting its dark side to the Ring show that there may still be some uncertainty about the terms of any agreement. The Fish intersects with the Clover at the Anchor on the vertical and at the Clouds on the horizontal, making me think that any uptick in income would be sluggish and subject to doubt.
In summary, I don’t see any massive lottery winnings in the forecast, more the potential for work-related gains that appear to show more promise than substance. Looking at the Fish knighting to the Dog and the Man reminds me of the line from Spaceballs, where John Candy as “Mog,” the half-man, half-dog sidekick of Lone Star, says proudly “I’m my own best friend!” The implication may be that self-employment is the most effective way to gain ground financially. Rider-Clover-House with Rider knighting to Sun and Ring and House knighting to Storks makes this seem even more attractive, but the Mice in the mix would most likely keep things on the small side. In my case, I’m trying to get a divination practice going, so this could be a relevant observation since I don’t want a major time commitment on my hands.