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I could almost hear his mind going clickety, clickety, click behind a shock of rather unruly light brown hair. The discomfitting thought occurred to me that I had only seen that certain expression before in the eyes of neighborhood cats who were deciding whether or not to move in and cast their lot with us.

Yes, you're right - that was Mr. Seventeen-Year-Old Paul Harris. A Honolulu convention marked the beginning of a friendship that has seen some ups and a fair share of downs. While he never did exactly move in, he has frequently cast his lot with us. Also, there have been times when a sudden brainstorm has caused Paul to appear at our door at some unlikely hour and I have surrendered my bed to spend the rest of the night tucked down on the living room couch. I've never complained (much) because I always know that something interesting is brewing and I can never wait to find out what it is.

At the outset of our meeting there was a common bond among us - very little worldly goods and the prospect of an enduring struggle. However, Paul had a head full of talent and extraordinarily nimble fingers to put his creativity into action. And Chuck had a vision of capturing Paul's untapped magic potential in writing. So Paul wrote the books and Chuck published them.

Now where do I fit into this picture? Well, among other ways, as a sort of mother hen to these two young men who never cease to amaze me. amuse me - and. yes. sometimes even aggravate me. They're more mature now. but still not very old. and it is hard to believe that Paul has contributed so much to magic in such a few years.

It is with pride and much affection that I write these words about Paul upon the launching of this, his crowning achievement among his other brain children. If Chuck were peering over my shoulder, he would heartily agree as I conclude with, "Well done, Paul, well done! And, by the way, Paul - It's your turn to sleep on the sofa."

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