## The Ace Detectives Again

On page 13 I described a routine called "The Ace Detectives". Wanting to use this effect as the final part of a card sequence, I came up with a very useful ploy using the Utility Switch Envelope which not only meant that I could perform the trick last but which also strengthened the method.

EFFECT: A card is genuinely freely chosen by a spectator and placed, without its face being seen, into a pay envelope. This envelope is left in view.

Two Aces are removed from the pack and are introduced as Ace Detectives. Their job is to find three other cards from the pack which will give clues as to the identity of the selected card in the envelope.

In a number of novel ways three cards are removed one at a time from the pack by the Aces. The colour of the first card, the suit of the second and the numerical value of the third give in combination a card value. The original selected card is now removed from the envelope and proves to be the named card.

REQUIREMENTS: 1. A Utility Switch Envelope. 2. A pack of cards.

PREPARATION: From the pack remove one card as a force card, say the 8D and put it face down into the genuine pocket of the Utility Switch Envelope.

Next, remove the three cards which will collectively add up to the value of the force card e.g. any red card, any diamond card and any 8. Stack these three cards in the above order, face down. Insert this pile of three cards face down into the top of the Utility Switch Envelope, feeding them through the slit and into the envelope's rear channel. Push them down until they are just about to emerge at the bottom of the envelope. The rest of the pack is returned to its case.

PRESENTATION: The pack can be used in any number of routines prior to this effect as there is no longer any set up to be maintained. When you are ready to begin this routine, look through the pack and drop out the two black Aces, and then give the pack to a spectator to shuffle.

While he is doing this you explain that the two Aces are Ace Detectives and that they are excellent at finding crooks!

Ask the spectator who has the cards to select one but not to look at it or let anyone else see it. Take the pack back from him and hold it face down in the left hand dealing position. Pick up the fake envelope and casually show it back and front before taking it in the left hand partly covering the pack, the flap end pointing towards the audience.

Your right hand takes the selected card and inserts it into the envelope. The steal away of this card will be exactly the same as described on pages 51 and 52, except that you will find that as you push the se lected card down into the envelope it will be put not only through the slit but also under the three cards already there.

This means that as you continue to push the card down, you will also push the other three cards with it so that all four will reappear at the base of the envelope and will therefore be secretly loaded onto the top of the pack. The right hand pulls the envelope away leaving the four cards on top of the pack and the force card only inside the envelope.

The envelope is placed down and you are now set with a pack which has just been shuffled by a spectator and yet which is now stacked as you need it for the trick!

The rest of the details of the routine are exactly as described from p.12 onwards in the first version of the routine, so I will not waste space repeating it all here, but the Utility Switch Envelope really helps to set up the deck for the trick in a subtle way AND it gets rid of the REAL selected card at the same time!

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