## Pursuit Of Thought

The effect echoes that of "Kingfisher". Four free selections are divined by the performer. Again, two decks are used, and both are stacked in an identical Gray code sequence. From top to face the arrangement is:

You also will require two cue cards made from blank-faced cards with backs that match the second deck. On these write the following two charts: _ ___

BLACK

CC—Q CH—5 CS —3 CD—6 SC —A SH—J SS —K

HC —7 HH — Q HS —8 HD —4 DC—9 DH — 2 DS — 10 DD —K

This Gray code arrangement yields the value of the third card in a sequence when the suits of the previous two cards are known. For instance, if the first card is a club and the second a heart, the value of the third card will be five: CH—5 (see the black cue card on the preceding page). Note that the secondary suits are arranged in CHaSeD order on the cue charts for fast reference.

There is only one exception to the system. That is the Spades-Diamonds (SD) combination. As indicated on the black cue card, this suit pairing can signal one of four values for the third card of the sequence: an ace, a two, a three or a four. To determine which of these four values is correct, the suit of the third card of the sequence must be learned.

If this card is a Club, the value is an Ace.

If this card is a Heart, the value is a Two.

If this card is a Spade, the value is a Three.

And if this card is a Diamond, the value is a Four,

Once again, CHaSeD order is used for easy recall: C = 1, H = 2, S = 3, D = 4.

How do you learn the suits of the selections? Through a series of bluffs that might be called "working three behind". The opening actions and selection procedure are identical to that explained in "Kingfisher". The deck is false shuffled, then four neighboring cards are removed from the pack, in order, by four spectators, (See pp. 417-418 for a discussion of selection methods.) The balance of the deck is set aside. Standing some distance from the spectators, you bring out the second pack. This pack, besides the fifty-two arranged cards, has in it the two cue cards and a joker. The cue cards and joker lie in different areas of the pack.

Gaze intently at the first spectator, then spread through the deck to the joker and cut it to the face. Do not show the face of the joker; simply place the card into your side coat pocket with an air of decision. To the first spectator say, "I'm almost certain the thought I'm picking up is yours: but Just to check, tell me only the suit of your card." When he does, smile. "I'm doing fine then. The suits are often harder to get than the values." Remember the suit named.

Turn to the second spectator and pretend to read his thoughts. Run through the pack and cut the unneeded cue card to the face. If the suit of the first selection just given you is black, the unneeded cue card Is the one labeled "red". Remove this cue card from the deck, as if it were the second choice, and slip it into your pocket with the Joker. Ask the second spectator, as a check, to name his suit. Thank him, remember the suit named and move on to the third spectator.

Give him a piercing look, then run through the deck and cut the second cue card to the face. Find the proper suit combination on this card; e.g., if the first selection is a club, and the second a diamond, you would locate CD on the "black" cue card. The value linked to this combination—six in this example—is the value of the third selection. Remove the second cue card from the pack and pocket it with the previous two cards. Ask the third spectator to name the suit of his card. This final bit of information defines the identity of his selection. The Gray code provides the value and he provides the suit. (In the special case of the Spades-Diamonds combination, the third suit also defines the exact value of the third card: ace, two, three or four.)

Turn to the fourth spectator, seem to read his thoughts and run through the deck until you find the third spectator's selection. Cut the deck to bring this card to a position second from the face. The two cards behind the third selection are the first two spectators' cards, in order, and the one on the face of the pack is the fourth selection. Lift the four cards as one from the deck and, with the same hand, reach into your coat pocket, apparently to retrieve the three cards previously placed there. (In passing, it should be remarked that your handling of the cards as each is pocketed during the routine should be consistent in appearance—and that you should not be standing near a table, for any such furniture would gravely weaken the logic of your using your pocket.) Fumble in the pocket for a second or two, giving the impression that you are gathering the other cards; but leave them behind and bring out only the four selections you hold, spreading them a bit. As you do this, again for consistency, ask the fourth spectator to name the suit of his card. Conclude by revealing that you have removed from the second deck the duplicate card to each of the four selections.

Chapter Eight:

The Dazzle Act