The Ace Detectives

EFFECT: A card is removed by a spectator from a shuffled pack and without anyone seeing its face, it is slipped into a pay envelope and left in view. Two Aces are removed from the pack and introduced as Ace Detectives who will find three cards from the deck which can give clues as to the colour, suit and number of the chosen card. In a series of novel ways, three cards are pulled out from the pack by the Aces and laid face down on the table. The first one turned over gives the colour of the selected card, the second gives the suit and the third reveals the numerical value. With a card name now arrived at from the three clues, the selected card is removed from the envelope and sure enough it is the very same card.

REQUIREMENTS: 1. A Double Flap Switch Envelope . 2. A pack of cards.

PREPARATION: Into one of the envelope's pockets slip a card face down. That will be your force card - let us say it is the 8D. As soon as the card is in the pocket, bend back the flap at that end onto the address side of the envelope and lay the envelope address side down on the table. This holds the bent back flap in place.

Remove from the pack any red card, any diamond and an 8, preferably a black one (for contrast). These three cards will add up collectively to your force card the 8D, and the cards would be varied according to the value of the force card you chose. Put them on top of the pack in an order, reading downwards, of the red card, the diamond and the 8.

PRESENTATION: Run through the pack and remove the two black Aces, introducing them as two very good detectives, in fact they are Ace detectives. They are going to demonstrate just how good they are by trying to discover through deduction the name of a freely selected card.

Shuffle the pack leaving the top three cards undisturbed and in order. A spectator can now remove any card (except one of the top three) and he lays it on the table without looking at it. You stress here the freedom of choice and offer to allow him to change his mind.

Assuming he is satisfied with his choice, you pick up the envelope in your left hand, the index finger gripping near the top of the left long side, the thumb opposite it on the right long side, the other fingers curled underneath and holding the bent back flap in place. Fig. 1.

The right hand comes over and the thumb and fingers pull down on the visible flap while the left index finger and thumb push inwards slightly. This causes the envelope to open like a tunnel, and a spectator can quickly peer inside to make sure it is empty. The selected card is then slipped inside face down.

The left hand hold on the envelope is now changed. All four fingers are held together and slid down the address side so that the bent back flap, hidden by the back of the left fingers, can drop down again. Fig. 2.

The envelope is held vertically and the address side is flat to the audience. The right hand closes the top flap and pivots the envelope towards you, the left hand remaining still, until the hidden flap lies flat against the underside of the envelope, which is then put flap side down on the table, the originally hidden flap nearest the audience.

A little practice is needed here to get the action smooth, but if done properly, your angles are covered and the move should go unnoticed.

You next pick up the pack and shuffle it again, keeping the top three cards in place. Finally square the pack in the left hand and get a left little finger break under the top card. Place a black Ace face up on top of the pack, undercut half the pack and place on top, still keeping the break. Then undercut all the cards below the break and put them on top. This will leave you with your original top card bottom of the pack with a black Ace above it.

Place the second Ace face up on top of the pack and undercut half the cards, completing the cut.

The Aces, you say, have gone off separately to try and find a suitable witness or two who can give them a clue as to the identity of the selected card in the envelope, and between them they hope they can come up with something.

At this you fan the pack to show the two Aces in the middle with indeed something 'between' them, one face down card. Remove the three cards and put all the cards above them under the rest of the pack thereby cutting the deck. Slide out the face down card from between the Aces without showing its face and leave it on the table.

That is the first witness, but there is still some way to go.

Drop the two Aces face up on the table. Pick up the pack and with the cards squared in the left hand and the faces of the cards twisted slightly towards the audience, the right hand comes over the pack and secretly crimps the bottom right corner of the top card.

The right hand then lifts up the complete pack and shuffles off about half of the cards from the face of the deck into the left hand, dropping the other half as a block onto the face of the shuffled cards. The faces of the cards are kept towards the audience during this short shuffle and this puts your crimped card in the middle of the pack.

Your two Ace detectives now decide to take a shot in the dark in their search for a second witness. So saying, you take one Ace and insert it face up at the rear short edge of the pack under the crimped card, the crimped corner making this easy.

Push the card in for half its length. Then insert the other Ace above the crimped card and slowly begin to pull the cards out, bringing their trapped card with them. When they are about two thirds of the way out, lift them upwards so that all the cards above them are separated from the rest of the deck. This gap is held by the left fingers while the Aces are finally completely withdrawn, one face down card sticking out from between them. Drop all three cards on the table and cut the deck at the break, completing the cut. Place the pack down.

The face down card between the Aces is now slid up to the right of the other face down witness card. As the right hand moves this card into position, use the opportunity to straighten out the slight crimp in the card's bottom right corner. No card face is shown at this point. Pick up the deck and shuffle, keeping the top card in place.

Your patter explains that two witnesses are not quite enough and that the Ace Detectives still require one more. So they decide to thoroughly question all the 47 other witnesses. Here you fan the deck face up to indicate the 47 witnesses. Square the pack and hold it face down in your left hand.

You say that the Ace Detectives questioned them all right from the one at the top - and here you double lift the top two cards as one and turn them face up onto the top of the deck - to the one at the bottom - and here you turn the deck face up to show the bottom card - but all to no avail.

With the pack still face up, slide out the bottom card from under the pack, turn it over so that it is face up again and then replace it back under the pack. This will leave the last of your three key cards face up, second from the top of the deck and covered by a face down card.

With the faces of the cards towards the audience, the right hand shuffles off half the pack, dropping the remaining cards as a block onto them. This sends your reversed card to the centre of the pack.

The Ace Detectives are almost beaten and they have to rely on something turning up, and so it does. And you fan the deck face up to show the reversed card in the centre. Remove it and place it alongside the other two on the table.

At long last the Ace Detectives know the name of the chosen card. How? The first witness tells them the colour. Turn it over to show a red card. The second tells them the suit. Turn it over and point out that it is a diamond. The third tells them the value of the selected card. Turn it over to show an 8. So the deduction is that the selected card must be the 8D.

You can stress here that nobody has as yet seen the selected card, and that it was fairly chosen from the pack at the start and put into the empty envelope. You now pick up the envelope with the left hand, raising the short end nearest the audience. The flap side is facing you. With your right hand open the top flap and pull out the card from inside to show it is the 8D!

Knife Throwing Techniques of the Ninja

Knife Throwing Techniques of the Ninja

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