Phantasmagoric Theater Tarot (US Games, 1998) bears no relation at all to traditional meanings.
Once again, we find ourselves in a sand-coloured building with a black-and-white chequered floor (as in the Ace of Swords). This time, though, the walls loom high above the lone figure, and there are nine swords stuck in the floor, or perhaps leant up against the light brown walls. There is also what may be a book lying on the floor, spoi.ing the purity of the chequered pattern.
Above the figure are a couple of openings, one shaped like a playing card spade (the suit most often linked to Swords), and a more irregular shape which frames a dark and foreboding castle in the distance. As for the figure, at first I thought it was some kind of magician, due to the pointy hat, but actually I think it's a damsel with a green gown and matching hat with a rather sad pinkish veil. It was the lack of hair that tricked me!
And so we have a female with something foreboding looming over her, in a situation that leaves her feeling trapped. Not so different, then, to the traditional woman in a bed clutching the bedcovers as she wrestles with nightmares. Still, it does remove the pointers to insomnia, which has always been one of my favourite interpretations of many versions of this card (it being something I'm pretty familiar with).
There are quite a few things that I'm feeling apprehensive about. Like the castle in the distance, though, most of them are far enough off that things may have changed for the better by the time they come round. There's a business trip next week that I'm already reading the papers for, yay me! And then there's giving birth to Number Two, with worries about pain and how long it will take, and who will look after Number One while that's going on. As for what I can do about it, I've got some ideas, and things I need to be dedicated and practise.
I am grateful that things are rarely as bad as they seem in my early-morning worrying sessions.