Chateau Cancer is a hub of activity this month as the Sun moves through Libra until October 23, heating up your fourth house of home and family. On top of that, energizer Mars is in Libra from October 4 to November 19, a once-every-two-years visit that can add excitement and stress in equal measure. If tension brews under your roof, don’t be surprised. There’s a lot of energy moving through this domain, and it could get kicked up like a dust storm.

Mars in Libra is a great time to tackle a renovation or home-based project, to start a cottage industry or to grab the reins of holiday planning (it’s never too early to get those Airbnbs and tickets booked, Cancer). But don’t spend ALL your free time between those four walls, especially if cabin fever starts to brew. Things could get tense with relatives and roommates, females in particular. Mars is in “detriment” in Libra—he’s the planet of war, and Libra is the cosmic peacekeeper—so it will take extra effort to maintain balance during this tenuous transit.

On top of that, the Sun will get into a couple cosmic clashes, the first with restrictive Saturn in Capricorn and your relationship zone on October 7. For a Crab, talking about your feelings and wearing your heart on your sleeve is just business as usual. But you may butt up against some harsh limits if you let it all hang out. Saturn’s all about “adulting,” and if you’re trying to get your needs met by acting out or behaving in a childish manner, that probably won’t happen. You may have to keep a better handle on your emotions today—or talk to a professional instead of turning best friends and significant others into 24-hour sounding boards.

Transforming your relationships is an important item of business starting October 3, when karmic Pluto ends a five-month retrograde in Capricorn and your partnership zone. Have you been embroiled in a power struggle with a key person? Maybe you’ve been hashing out deal points but keep stopping shy of signing on the dotted line for a professional venture. Energetically, something’s been holding you back or getting in the way of making things official…but perhaps it’s a blessing in disguise? Now that Pluto returns to forward motion, you can see these dynamics more clearly and work to balance them.

Your career is front and center on October 13, when the Aries full moon beams into your tenth house of success and ambition. Something you’ve been working on for the past six months—a promotion, leadership role or status-boosting initiative—could come through at last. Are you craving a new professional path or a change of nine-to-five scenery? These transitional moonbeams could bring an exciting new opportunity.

But can you count on the full support of your nearest and dearest? This full moon will form a tough square (90-degree angle of tension) to calculating Pluto in your partnership house. Any career-related shifts can also demand some uncomfortable adjustments to your relationship or a key bond. That might mean having to adjust their expectations. For example, are they accustomed to calling the Cancer Hotline for every personal SOS at all hours of the day? You may need to “teach them to fish” rather than go into caretaker overload. At this pivotal moment for YOUR goals and dreams, it’s time for the people you’ve always supported to rally behind you instead of throwing emotional blackmail and guilt trips your way. That said, it’s ultimately your job to not take that bait—and to set clear boundaries with your people!

Some well-deserved fun arrives starting October 23, when the Sun moves into fellow water sign Scorpio and your fifth house of pleasure, passion and play. Creativity spikes with your mojo; a fall romance could heat up before the holiday season begins. If you’re in a relationship, get some concerts and fun outings on the calendar, along with a few dressy dates (you look adorable in athleisure, Crab, but you also clean up nicely!).

The October 27 Scorpio new moon opens a six-month window for new (or deepening) love or an exciting creative project. Artists, musicians and performers especially should seize this date for an album drop, gallery opening or to start working on your craft in earnest. Be your fiercest and flirtiest self today and you could attract an admirer or three. Whether it turns into something romantic or just a kindred-spirit spark, what’s most important is that you let your authentic self emanate—big and bold! The people who are drawn to you when you’re being raw and real are the ones you ultimately want around.

That same day, intense Mars in your domestic fourth house will lock into a heated square with tough Saturn in your relationship house, repeating the dynamic of the October 7 Sun-Saturn square but with a bit more aggression. Keep tabs on your anger, which could surge and get direct toward the nearest party before you can even stop yourself. Find an outlet—instead of a target—for all that fast-moving frustration.

With the Scorpio new moon opposing quirky Uranus in your iconoclastic eleventh house, your inner rebel will show up at the party anyhow. Fly your freak flag and watch what happens. For coupled Cancerians, this new moon opposing liberated Uranus could set off a bout of “grass is greener” syndrome, and your eye might wander to other options. No harm in enjoying a little innocent banter or energy exchange with someone else—IF you bring the frisson of excitement back home to bae!

But careful about opening that door TOO wide, especially to paramours past. On October 31, communication planet Mercury turns retrograde in Scorpio and your love zone until November 20, which could draw in an ex. What starts as an innocent “how ru?” text could escalate into a getting-to-know-you (again) chain of pain—or energetic drain. Retrogrades bring back the past, and since Mercury is the sky’s messenger, it’s possible that there’s more of a lesson in this than anything else. Are you repeating still patterns from your past, or is there something crucial to learn? On the other hand, maybe the second (or fourth) time will be the charm, and you’ll finally write a proper ending to this love story…together!

Regardless, you’ll want to manage your reactions during Mercury retrograde since you’ll be prone to flying off the handle. Halloween could turn into an emotional fright-fest if you let your temper get the better of you or stir up drama because you’ve spent too much time dipping into the spiked punchbowl. Take the mask off and let people see the real you rather than putting on a show.

Of course, that doesn’t mean everything should be out on public display. With information hound Mercury awry, think twice before publishing a provocative post or selfie since words and images can be irrevocable—or at least potentially damaging. With the cosmic trickster starting off the trick-or-treating in your expressive and indulgent fifth house, less is more. That goes for what comes out of your mouth and what you put into it. A little less carpe to your diem (and DMs) will serve you well. Take the time to polish your creative projects behind the scenes or get to know a romantic prospect slowly. That way, when the holiday season kicks in and Mercury turns direct in late November, you’ll be ready to responsibly unveil what you’ve been up to—and you’ll find an eager and receptive audience!

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