En Voyage

Effect: The ace, two and three of any suit are openly removed from the pack and laid on the table. The ace is placed into the center of the pack, shown and pushed flush. Without a false move the performer reaches into his right-front trousers pocket and withdraws the ace. He lays it face-up onto the face-down pack and casually cuts the cards, losing the card.

Next the two is taken from the table and inserted into the pack. The hand goes to the right-front trousers pocket again, unmistakably empty, and comes forth with the two. This card is also cut face-up into the deck.

Finally, the three is picked up and pushed into the pack. It, like its fellows, instantly flies to the trousers pocket; and it too is then buried face-up in the pack.

The performer points out that when the three cards disappeared from the deck, they traveled to the same trousers pocket. "This time." he says, "they will each fly to a different pocket.,.. Now!" He slaps the pack, then ribbon spreads it across the table. The three reversed cards are no longer in the deck. The ace is brought from the trousers pocket, the two from a coat pocket, and the three from the inner breast pocket. In assessing this effect, you should understand that the action is straightforward and that no duplicate cards are in play. The three traveling cards can, in fact, be signed by spectators at the start.

Method: Mr. Elmsley developed this masterly piece in the late 1950s and, when Dal Vernon visited England during that period to work with Lewis Ganson on what was to become a series of classic books, this was one of the tricks Mr. Elmsley showed him. Mr. Vernon was so impressed by it, when he gave lessons in 1962 at the Lou Tannen School of Magic in New York, this was one of the tricks he taught. (Another was "Brainweave"; see pp. 338-345.) "En Voyage" soon became an underground favorite in the States, but has never been explained in print. It is not a trick easily mastered, but it is one worth every bit of effort necessary, for the result Is an entirely magical sequence that audiences readily appreciate.

Begin by running through the pack In search of the ace, two and three of any suit. For this description, clubs are used. (You can, by the way, ask someone to designate the suit.) As you locate these three cards, also cut or cull to the face of the pack a deuce of the same color. In our example, this would be the two of spades. Arrange the ace, two and three of clubs in ascending order on the face of the pack. From face to back the four cards read: ace of clubs, two of clubs, three of clubs and two of spades. As you square the face-up deck Into left-hand dealing position, catch a break under the two of spades.

This ordering of the cards is done casually, with the faces tipped toward you. Once you have the four cards arranged, lower your hands and, with the palm-down right hand, lift the four-card packet from the face of the deck. Then clearly exhibit the ace, two and three of clubs in this manner:

With the left thumb, draw the ace from the packet onto the face of the deck, jogging it a bit to the right. With the same thumb, draw off the two of clubs onto the ace, jogged somewhat farther to the right. This leaves the three of clubs—actually a double card, the two of spades hidden beneath— in the right hand. Lay the double onto the deck, forming a spread of the three club cards (Figure 155). Pin the spread to the deck with your left thumb.

You will now steal away the ace as you remove the spread from the deck. An easy and wholly deceptive switch of Mr. Elmsley's is used to accomplish this. Bring the right hand, palm-up, to the right side of the pack and seemingly grasp the three-card spread as shown in Figure 156. Actually only grasp the two of clubs and the double three, leaving the ace under the control of the left thumb. Now separate the hands, at

the same time turning them palms down. During this action, with the left thumb pull the ace of clubs square with the face of the pack; and with the right fingers simultaneously spread the double card, allowing the backs of all three right-hand cards to be seen. (Figure 157 shows an exposed performer's view of the switch in progress). This switch is imperceptible, even when performed in slow motion. It should be done in a relaxed, unhurried manner.

Lay the spread of three cards face-down on the table to your near right. Then adjust the face-down deck into left-hand dealing position and secretly transport the ace from the bottom to the top. This can be done with a side slip and replacement, a reverse double undercut or a brisk overhand shuffle.

With your right hand, reach out to the three-card spread and pick up the top card. Those of the audience who have paid attention should believe this to be the ace. Indeed, the ace will in a moment be shown, confirming this assumption, and clarifying the situation for the less attentive. As everyone's eyes are captured by the right hand's action, with the left thumb push the top card of the deck slightly to the right and get a fourth-finger break beneath it.

Lay the right hand's card (the two of clubs), face-down and square on the pack. Then, using the initial action of Cliff Green's double lift, push the top two cards as one forward on the deck for about half their length. That is, bring the right hand palm-down over the pack and place the tip of the extended forefinger on the back of the top card. At the same time, bring the tip of the right thumb onto the inner edge of the double card above the break (Figure 158), The natural position of the thumb

accommodates this. Without hesitation, push the top two cards forward as one, apparently using the tip of the forefinger, but actually pushing the double card with the thumb (Figure 159).

Now, with the right hand still palm-down, grip the lower half of the pack at its inner corners, between the thumb and second finger, pull this half backward from beneath the upper portion, and slap it on top, square with the other half (Figure 160), This action is similar to that of a Hindu shuffle. The double card now lies outjogged near the center of the pack.

Turn the left hand momentarily palm-down, exposing the face of the ace protruding from the deck. Then, with the right hand, turn over the two cards on the table and leave them lying there face-up, the three resting diagonally across the two of spades, so that only the "2" of one index is visible and the suit pips are concealed (Figure 161). Everything appears as it should. (The use of the extra two as a stand-in was suggested to Mr. Elmsley by Cy Endileld. The crisscross display ruse was originated by Mr. Elmsley for this trick, but was also Independently conceived in the States by Brother John Haminan.)

Return the left hand to a palm-up position: then, with the right hand, push the double card into the pack and palm the two cards away. There are avariety of side steal and right-hand diagonal palm shift techniques that may be employed for this purpose. Ones by Edward Mario, Jerry Andrus and Larry Jennings come immediately

to mind. Mr. Elmsley uses a pinkie clip side steal, which is described in Volume I of this work (see pp. 130-133). With the two cards palmed in the right hand, grasp the pack from above while your left hand undercuts the deck and completes the cut. (While this cut does nothing, it is necessary to maintain consistency with actions used later in the routine.)

Reach the right hand into your right-front trousers pocket and bring out the ace of clubs (which lies farthest from the palm), leaving behind the second card (the two of clubs). Display the card, then lay it face-up on the deck, catching a break beneath it. Cut the ace to the center of the pack and retain the break.

With the right hand, turn the two (of spades) and three (of clubs) face-down on the table. Pick up the two. (This is the safest procedure when working surrounded. However, if there is no one behind you or on the extreme side angles, you can instead do this: Dig the right fingertips under the front end of the two and draw it forward from beneath the three, simultaneously lifting it to a vertical position, back outward [Figure 162], Then revolve it face-down. The right fingers naturally conceal the face of the car d until it is tipped from the audience's view.)

Place the two face-down on the deck. Then, with the right forefinger, push it forward for half its length, simulating the earlier double-card handling used with the ace. With the right hand, grasp the inner end of the deck, strip the top third from beneath the outjogged two and slap it back on top. This maneuver leaves the break beneath the ace undisturbed, yet closely resembles the earlier cut, lending an appearance of conformity to your actions.

With the right hand, slowly and fairly push the protruding two of spades into the pack, then cut the cards at the break, bringing the ace to the bottom. Square the pack and execute a pull-down or a double buckle to obtain a left fourth-finger break above the bottom two cards. Then, with an obviously empty right hand, reach into the trousers pocket and bring out the two of clubs.

Display it, lay it face-up on the deck and apparently cut it, In a deliberate fashion, into the pack, performing a reverse double undercut to bring the two bottom cards to the top. This places the face-up ace over the two, and both are covered by a single face-down

indifferent card. In squaring the pack, form a left fourth-finger break under these three cards (the bridge In the reversed cards should aid you here}.

With the right hand, pick up the three of clubs from the table and lay it face-up and square onto the deck. Perform a quadruple turnover, apparently turning just the three of clubs face-down. In this action, carry the four-card block very slightly inward, creating a step about half the width of a border. In a continuing action smoothly push the top card forward for half its length. This card is thought to be the three—it Is actually the two of clubs.

Grasp the top portion of the pack at its Inner end and draw the upper half backward, stripping it from beneath the outjogged card. Slap this half on top, taking care to preserve the step. In a squaring action of the top half, convert the step into a fourth-finger break.

Once again, the handling of the cards appears consistent with the previous actions. You must now perform two secret tasks at once. You will push the projecting card flush, forming a break above it, while you simultaneously palm the top three cards. This is accomplished as follows:

Move the palm-down right hand forward over the deck, in preparation to push the protruding card flush. Begin to do so, but stop momentarily when approximately an inch of the card still protrudes from the front of the pack. Move the right hand back several Inches to expose the outjogged car d in the center of the pack. Then resume the action of pushing the card flush and, in doing so, execute Edward Mario's misdirection palm (ref. The Cardician [first printing], pp. 5253, and the last paragraph of "Repeater Selected Card to Pocket", p. 55; in subsequent printings, pp. 55-57 and p. 58). That is:

Move the palm-down right hand forward over the deck, in preparation to push the protruding card flush. The instant the right hand eclipses the pack, move the left fourth-fingertip slightly to the right, carrying the three cards above the break with it (Figure 163, right

hand withdrawn to expose the action). This mildly cants the packet, anglejogging its outer right corner over the front of the deck. The jog need be no more than an eighth of an inch.

With the tip of the right fourth finger, immediately contact this corner of the packet and press downward, levering the three car ds up into the right palm (Figure 164).

The instant the palm is completed, use the right fingertips to push the two into the pack, but angle it slightly to the left, causing its right inner corner to project from the right edge of the pack. Contact this corner with the tip of the left fourth finger and pull down on it, forming a break above the two as you push its corner flush.

With the right hand, square the ends of the pack; then, with the left hand, undercut the cards below the break and complete the cut. This brings the two of clubs to the top of the pack. Move the right hand to the right-front trousers pocket and load the palmed cards as you reach into the pocket. Once the hand is inside the pocket, turn the three cards around. Then bring out the three of clubs (the card now nearest the palm), leaving behind the ace and indifferent card. When you do this, make a leftward body turn and focus all attention on the card coming from the pocket. While everyone's eyes are watching the right hand, thumb the top card of the pack, the two of clubs, into the left-side coat pocket. The misdirection at this moment is compelling.

Exhibit the three, then place it face-up on the deck and cut about three-quarters of the pack from the bottom to the top. Turn the deck face-up in the left hand as you say, "The three cards now lie reversed and scattered throughout the deck." In support of this statement, spread the first few cards until you reach the facedown three of clubs.

"These three cards traveled one by one to my trousers pocket— the same pocket each time." Illustrate your words by removing the face-down card from the pack; then, without showing its face, slip it briefly into the trousers pocket. During the moment your hand is in the pocket, desert the three, slipping it behind the two cards already there (placing it nearest the body), and grasp the indifferent (outermost) card in its place. This pocket switching dodge is borrowed from Francis Carlyle's "Homing Card" in Stars of Magic (p. 63).

Bring the indifferent card from the pocket, back outward, as you say, "Watch closely now, for this time all three cards will travel from the deck, each to a different pocket." Indicate your left-side coat pocket, breast pocket and right-front trousers pocket by quickly tapping each with the Indifferent card. Then insert it face-down into the face-up pack and push it flush, executing the pinkie clip side steal. However, instead of fanning the pack to complete the extraction of the card, instead revolve the deck leftward and face-down in the left hand. Then, with the card palmed in the right hand, slap the pack, or riffle it, to imply that you are doing something magical, and load the palmed card on top. Then ribbon spread the cards, showing that the three face-up clubs have vanished.

Let both hands be seen empty. Then, with your right hand, reach into the right-front trousers pocket and bring out the ace of clubs (the outside card) at the fingertips. Toss it face-up onto the table. Return the right hand to the trousers pocket and palm the three as you say, "No more from here." (Mr. Elmsley takes the three into a rear palm position.) Working to a brisk rhythm, place your left band into the left-side coat pocket and bring out the two of clubs, as the right hand, apparently empty, leaves the trousers pocket. Toss the two face-up with the ace. Finally, reach with the right hand into your inside left breast pocket and pretend to draw the three of clubs from there. Toss this card with the rest and take a bow.

As mentioned earlier, the three cards can be signed by spectators. Mr. Elmsley also mentions that the three of clubs can be loaded into a sealed envelope, d la LePaul, or a card wallet, before it is brought from the breast pocket; his rear palm wallet-loading method can be used here (see pp. 34-36). This extra embellishment is only advisable if the cards are signed. Otherwise, duplicates will certainly be suspected.

While the method for this trick is demanding, the composition is delightfully economical, placing you always a step or two or three ahead of the audience. It will be obvious that there is room for variation in the sleights employed. Indeed, Dai Vernon, Larry Jennings, Bruce Cervon, Edward Mario and others have developed individual handlings over the years to suit their tastes. These variants, while conserving the basic Elmsley structure, offer some interesting points. The original, nevertheless, is an exceptional piece of card magic, which can stand confidently in comparison beside any of its offspring.

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