Then proceed writing down the numbers called. But as you write the numbers, ADD THEM MENTALLY UNTIL YOU REACH A SUM BETWEEN 36 and 45.

If the sum should happen to be 36, you may call for another number. The most that this number could be is nine so that you run no risk of exceeding the sum you want—45. If you reach a sum greater than 36, however, call for no more numbers.

Let us presume that the numbers which have been called are those written in the top list. The sum so far is

To get the sum of 45, which is on the prepared FtCr

, add the number three in the space left in the list. FIO IT


Then draw a line under the figures. See Figure 17.

"Now, let me read these numbers and each one may check up on his number. 5-7-1-3-4-9-6-3-7."

These should be read rather quickly.

"Will you please add them up?"

Give card to someone to add numbers. When he has done that, ask for the answer.

"And what is the total? 45. Thank you. Now, remember this. Several of you called out numbers which you selected yourselves. We checked up on them and this gentleman (or lady) added these numbers and found the total to be 45. You said 45, did you not? Well, here is where the mystery starts."

Pick up envelope.

"A few moments ago the gentleman there put a piece of paper in this envelope, and I inserted this phantom knife (or dagger)."

Remove knife.

Holding envelope with flap side toward you, tear off the end and reach into Space B (nearest audience). As you do this, push middle partition firmly against side of envelope nearest you. Tip envelope over a little and take out the prepared paper and the cut-out figures. While doing this, you may walk up to a spectator if you are performing in a parlor or club.

"If you will note, sir, some strange influence has been at work on the paper and has cut out with the blade of a phantom knife (or dagger) the same sum that the gentleman found your numbers totaled—45."

Hold up paper so that all can see it, then hold up the numbers 4 and 5.

"The envelope is empty, not even a trace of the spirit of the phantom knife (or dagger)—or even footprints."

Show inside of envelope, passing it around rather hurriedly and at a safe distance from audience. If inner partition is held tight against rear side of envelope, this is easy to do without detection.

"Will you, sir, please examine the paper and the numbers. Rather odd, isn't it? Maybe some day I will solve the secret and then be able to tell you how it is done."


With a little concentration, you should have no trouble in adding the numbers mentally. From time to time vary the number you want forced. You may use any number from 35 to 50.

Suppose you want to use 41 and have that cut out of the prepared piece of paper. Assume that various members of the audience give you the following numbers:

As 41 is the number to be FORCED, simply place the number 2 between 4 and 9 and you have raised your sum to 41.

Both methods of forcing a number, as described in the preceding two tricks, you will find very useful. They may be used interchangeably in both tricks. You may use the ball of tissue paper in this second trick and the cut paper in the first trick.

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