The Ravenmoon Tarot Deck
This is a Work In Progress. See the parent thread on the Fenspace Forum for discussion and updates.
Both a socio-political statement and a fortune-telling prop, the Ravenmoon Tarot Deck first came to the public's notice when copies were made available for purchase at Serenity-Con. It follows the Rider-Waite deck in most respects, but has been updated for Fenspace.
The Major Arcana
The Ravenmoon's Trumps show people or places that are important in early Fenspace history, with a link back to the event that caused many of the First Fen to want to go into space.
- 0 - The Fool
- The Fool is both the beginning and the end, and the one who both makes the journey through the Tarot and the one who shows newcomers the way along that journey. The creator of the Ravenmoon Tarot chose to depict the First Fan in Space, Katz Schrödinger, as the Fool.
- 1 - The Magician
- The Rider-Waite deck uses The Magician to denote scholarly knowledge. The Ravenmoon deck depicts Fenspace's first well-known scholar, Jonathon Helscher, as the Fen Magician.
- 2 - The High Priestess
- Many interpretations of the High Priestess have her representing "the female indwelling presence of the divine." The Ravenmoon Tarot depicts the three-into-one AI of Fate and her sister-selves (as they present themselves in video feeds from the Fateful Lightning) as the High Priestess.
- 3 - The Empress
- The Empress is both the Earthly Paradise and the Feminine principle. Ravenmoon's artist chose two intelligences to represent The Empress: Kat Avins and Gaia, both of Grover's Corners.
- 4 - The Emperor
- Some interpret The Emperor as the desire to rule over one's surroundings, while others see it as the embodiment of the Masculine principle. Either way, the Ravenmoon deck depicts the Transrationality Science Assessment Bureau's ranking off-planet officer, Col. Stephen Caldwell, as The Emperor.
- 5 - The Hierophant
- The Hierophant originally represented religion, orthodox theology, traditional education, and a “Man of high social standing.” The Ravenmoon deck divorces the card from its religious aspects, and depicts a prominent Fendane with close ties to Earth and conservative politics: Chris Marsden.
- 6 - The Lovers
- In the Rider-Waite deck, The Lovers represents the impulse that drives one out of the Garden of Eden, towards adulthood. The Ravenmoon deck deviates from this and takes the card more literally, showing Benjamin Rhodes and Gina Langley as The Lovers - although some claim Gina represents both a lover and the drive toward adulthood.
- 7 - The Chariot
- The Chariot represents struggle and eventual hard-won victory. It is also the only Tarot card associated with a vehicle. The Ravenmoon deck shows one who has struggled and won against herself, gaining the victory of being able to travel through space under her own power at the cost of being merged with her vehicle: Jet Jaguar.
- 8 - Strength
- Discipline and control are the watch-words of Strength, as they are of Alita Gally and the other members of the Panzer Kunst Gruppe shown on this card.
- 9 - The Hermit
- Rider-Waite interprets The Hermit in two ways: the need to withdraw from society to become comfortable with oneself, and the return from isolation to share one's knowledge. The Ravenmoon deck depicts Fenspace's most famous recluse, Padraig O'Niell, as the Hermit, but leaves the card's illustration incomplete - perhaps the artist is waiting for Mr. O'Niell to end his self-imposed exile from society.
- 10 - Wheel of Fortune
- The Wheel of Fortune represents an element of change in the querant's life. While the most obvious image for this card would have been handwavium itself, the Ravenmoon Tarot's creator instead chose a person well-known to have gone through a change because of handwavium: "That Poor Sod," A.C. Peters.
- 11 - Justice
- The easiest of the Tarot to interpret, Justice represents Justice. The Ravenmoon card depicts Justice with the Best Damn Cop on Mars, Natsuko Aki.
- 12 - The Hanged Man
- Most interpretations of the Hanged Man mark him as an indication of sacrifice, letting go, and surrendering. The Ravenmoon deck goes beyond this and adds misfortune, represented by Murphy Murphy.
- 13 - Death
- Most fortune-tellers are quick to say that Death is not always Death; it is also an ending, a change, or an increased sense of self-awareness because of change. But that ending can also be the ending of dreams or lives. Ravenmoon's artist chose for Death a First Fan who is known to be quick to violence, who was avoided like the plague for years, and who changed because of an increased self-awareness of his place in Fen society: Noah Scott.
- 14 - Temperance
- The Rider-Waite interpretation of Temperance is moderation, synthesis, and compromise. Ravenmoon depicts the first leader to embrace synthesis and compromise for the good of her faction, Serenity I, as the embodiment of Temperance.
- 15 - The Devil
- In most traditional decks, The Devil represents an obsession or addiction to fulfilling earthly base desires. The Ravenmoon deck gives the (dis)honor of the role of The Devil to Asmodeus Grey.
- 16 - The Tower
- Failure, ruin and catastrophe are the hallmarks of The Tower, and this is reflected in the Ravenmoon deck by its depiction of the falling Crystal Osaka on this card.
- 17 - The Star
- Many interpretations of The Star have it representing inspiration and discovery. Ravenmoon's deck chooses to represent this as scientific inspiration and discovery, presenting The Professor in his laboratory.
- 18 - The Moon
- Rider-Waite uses the Moon to denote life of the imagination separated from life of the spirit - a focus on a wide-ranging worldly life instead of a spiritual life. This role has been given (perhaps unfairly) to Buckaroo in the Ravenmoon Tarot.
- 19 - The Sun
- The Sun is "attained knowledge," shown in this deck by Neil Armstrong making his walk at Tranquility Base.
- 20 - Judgement
- Judgement symbolizes resurrection and the promise of life after death. That promise was fulfilled in the earliest days of the Fenspace diaspora, embodied in Fenspace and depicted in the Ravenmoon deck by Wave Convoy.
- 21 - The Worlds
- Rider-Waite says The World is fulfillment, accomplishment, and success. While this could apply to all of the Big-Name Fen, the most public and outspoken BNF, Mal Fnord, is the one Ravenmoon's artist chose to depict on The Worlds. Many of the planets that the Soviets were first to explore are shown in the image's background.
The Minor Arcana
The suit of Wands, Staves, Batons, or Clubs is associated with the classical element of Fire. The Ravenmoon Tarot gives the fire of inspiration to this suit, renaming it Rockets and illustrating an overview of pre-handwave space exploration.
- Dr. Robert Goddard, launching his first successful rocket.
- Sputnik 2 and Laika
- Dr. Wernher von Braun shaking hands with President Truman, with Eisenhower in the background.
- The Atlas V rocket, launching a commercial satellite, in orbit.
- A Minuteman missile, in mid-launch.
- A Space X Falcon rocket.
- Rollout of the Space Shuttle Enterprise.
- Challenger on her launch pad, 28 January 1986, with her crew pictured in the foreground.
- A NIKE missile emplacement, clearly abandoned, with a group of civilians working on one of the missiles. Some kind of lightning display is going on in the background.
- A V-2 rocket, mid-launch. The background is indistinct, so it cannot be seen whether this is a wartime launch from Germany or testing in the American desert.
- Yang Liwei.
- John Glenn in the Friendship 7 capsule.
- Sally Ride.
- The King
- Yuri Gagarin, in space.
The suit of Coins, Pentacles, or Diamonds is associated with the classical element of Earth. The Ravenmoon deck gives the solid rock of wealth to this suit, including non-material wealth in its riches.
- Antonio Mendoza, Fenspace's first Vitamin Man, trading his goods for whatever he can get.
- Mal Fnord and Chris Marsden, shaking hands, with Soviet and American flags waving in the background.
- Haruhi Suzumiya giving The Speech at SOS-Con.
- Colonel Stephen Caldwell in full dress uniform, hoarding the wealth of handwavium technology.
- Noah Scott and Haruhi Suzumiya, backs turned to each other, with Great Justice dividing between them.
- Myk-El Miller, teaching others how to safely use handwavium so as not to become poorer from the experience.
- The USS Miranda going to FTL.
- Vulpine Fury, in his usual "shop telepresence" persona.
- Ford Sierra, tuning her namesake blue car.
- A Ninja team coming home from a succesful mission.
- Bob Schroeck, tending a field aboard Grover's Corners
- **WHITENOISE**, the leader of the Morians.
- Haruhi Suzumiya, caring for her closest friends.
- The King
- Don Antonio Esposito.
Cups/Hearts will follow once the Fenspace Collective have decided who's on them.
Again, Swords/Spades will follow once the Fenspace Collective have decided who's on them...
- ↑ The deck actually dates to a few weeks after the fall of Crystal Osaka, but people just don't visit Ravenmoon very often.
- ↑ There are rumors of early Ravenmoon decks that show Justice as Great Justice, depicting Haruhi and her inner circle on the card. Nobody has ever displayed an example of such a card.
- ↑ Wands are typically fair-haired, but lets face it, this is a natural.
- ↑ Name not given only because nobody's decided it yet, not because it's a secret.