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Secret Truths1 life After Death • Reincarnation * Occult Lore

I MYSTIC

Secret Rulers of Earth


and
The Coming Armageddon!

GO VISIT YOUR GRAVE


LEAGUE OF THE LIVING DEAD
... and many others
ITS THEORY AND PRACTICE

A book of WITCHES and SORCERERS... of DEMONOLOGY ...


of BLACK MAGIC and WHITE MAGIC...of SPELLS and ALCHEMY...

PROFESSOR. SIRDAR IKBAL AO SHAH . * *


has compressed the work of years of research
into one masterly volume. The Grimoires, or
notorious Black Books of the wizards are
included here. Spells and charms are de¬
scribed. The mysteries of the secret societies.
Never before has there been gathered into
one volume these processes of magic from the
Grimoires, from Arabic sources, from the
Great and Little Alberts and the Heptameron
of Peter de Abano.

VENTURE BOOKSHOP
Profusely illustrated with the P.O. Box 671, Evanston, ill*
swords, candles, pentodes and
Please send me .. "OCCULTISM, its
circles inseparable from the Theory and Practice" at only $5.00 each,
equipment of the classical wizard. including mailing charges.
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fectly organized and easy to
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anyone interested in the magical ADDRESS. ........
processes of ancient days.
CITY & STATE.....
Prices $5.00
CONTENTS NOVEMBER 1953

PAGE

4 EDITORIALLY SPEAKING .. The Editor


6 THE HIDDEN KINGDOM. Ray Palmer
38 GO VISIT YOUR GRAVE.....Rog Phillips
52 TRUE MYSTIC ADVENTURE
I Traveled In A Flying Saucer.Orfeo Matthew Angelucci
(As told to Paul M. Vest)
68 YELLOW FIREBALLS.Edwin Benson
70 LEAGUE OF THE LIVING DEAD.Randall Garrett
88 AIR TRAVEL-4,000 YEARS AGO. John Fletcher
90 THE ASTRAL EXILE...Chester S. Geier
122 SEARCHING FOR THE ELIXIR OF LIFE.Drew Ames
124 THE MAN FROM TOMORROW.Ray Palmer
126 MYSTERY IN THE NEWS.Ray Palmer
128 THE SEANCE CIRCLE . The Readers

MYSTIC Magazine
Issue No. 1
EDITORS ART DIRECTOR
Ray Palmer Alfred Bernard
Bea Mahaffey

Cover Painting by J. Allen St. John illustrating THE HIDDEN KINGDOM


fbditorially Sj
>peaking.

T HE other night we 'got up


out of bed around midnight
ished into the night.
While we finished our milk we
and went out into the kitch¬ sat there for a time, thinking. To¬
en to raid the refrigerator. Some¬ day, in what we are pleased to call
times we like a glass of cold milk an “enlightened” age, we can re¬
and perhaps a few cookies to car¬ gard a bat in a calm light. Just a
ry us over until morning. As yse sat winged animal. That is, until we
there munching cookies, our eyes begin to study him scientifically he
kept playing tricks on us; there is just a winged animal. Then sud¬
seemed to be something black flitr denly it strikes us that he is an ani¬
ting around always just beyond the mal, and not a bird! An animal
range of our vision. We couldn’t that flies like a bird; and as we
quite catch it, with just the small noted, even more gracefully and
light on the kitchen range; so we easily and with the added advan¬
turned on the overhead light. Then tage that he has a safeguard
we saw it—a large bat was zip¬ against slamming into something in
ping through the house, from room flight, even though unable to see.
to room, with soundless, seemingly A bird, under the same conditions,
effortless grace! would be helpless.
Each time around, he’d swing Where did the bat come from?
past our head, almost touching us, What happened to evolution when
and making us duck rather fran¬ just this one animal took to the air?
tically. We tried hitting at him as Perhaps, far back in time, there is
he passed, but as'well try to hit the a sensational story, an alien story,
wind. Bats have a marvelous sys¬ to account for what we must regard
tem of radar, and every motion we as a tremendous mystery, a weird
made was noted instantly, and paradox, a very strange departure
avoided. from the norm. Perhaps there is
We didn’t like the idea of a bat good reason for the superstitious
in the house—we were minded of horror with which most of us re¬
old legends, even thought of vam¬ gard the bat. Perhaps there is a
pires— but what to do? There reason for the bat being an out¬
seemed no way of catching him. cast among animals and birds
Well, we solved it very neatly— alike. Perhaps there is reason for
we simply opened the outside this complicated, but effective, sub¬
kitchen door wide and sat quietly stitute for sight. Why did evolu¬
waiting. Inevitably the bat flew tion, under the sun, fail to provide
through the open door and van¬ this one animal with eyes? Be
EDITORIALLY SPEAKING 5

cause it lives in the dark, in caves? cannot be positive, is to be nega¬


But no; for it is free to come out tive; so that we may not be ridi¬
when it wishes—it can fly as well culed. A bat, says science, is harm¬
in the day as in the night; its radar less. Yet, somehow, we fear him!
does not depend on light, but on And if we put our reasons into
sound. Actually, it should be un¬ words, such as vampire, we are re¬
aware that light pxists. In our kitch¬ garded with suspicion, labeled
en, it flew about without change of “superstitious.”
tactic, with lights on or off. It gave A superstition is a belief, re¬
no sign that it knew lights had gardless of knowledge or reason. It
been turned on. is a feeling we get, an acceptance
Did the bat come from another due to a sense we may be unaware
world; a world where there was no exists. When we see a bat, some¬
light to develop sight; where sight thing besides reason and knowl¬
had to be replaced by the strange edge tells us to be afraid. What is
radar-like sense based on sound? Is that something? Perhaps if we
this other world another world, or knew the meaning of the word “sti-
is it some dark, unknown place on tion” we’d know what we mean by
(or in) this world? Perhaps the bat superstition.
has a most tremendous story to tell This is a magazine of fiction.
—if we could only learn it! The stories you will read herein
This is a new magazine. Perhaps are not based on reason or knowl¬
it is like the bat, flying around in edge. They are based on the
a world in which ordinary sight is stranger things. They are tales of
like blindness. It is devoted to the the things of which superstition is
unseen things, to the mysterious, to the only historian. They are stories
the mystic, to the occult, to the un¬ of the supernatural, of the weird,
known, to the unfound, to the un¬ of the mysterious, of the unknown,
suspected. It is at one and the of life after death, or reincarnation,
fcame time, a search for light, and a of dreams; of vampires and witches
delving into the dark. It is an ef¬ and goblins and werewolves; of the
fort to bring scientific common soul, the subconscious mind, the
sense to bear on the mysterious; unconscious mind, the supercon¬
and an admission that our unrea¬ scious mind; of hell, or heaven, of
sonable superstitions may be rea¬ the devil, of super beings, of angels,
sonable after all. of demons, of elementals, of fa¬
The unknown is unknown. miliars; of spirits, ghosts, phantoms,
Therefore it cannot be treated in afreets, djinns; of magic, both
a factual way. The scientific meth¬ white and black, legerdemain, illu¬
od does not apply; the only result sion; of cults and secret societies;
of such application being a nega¬ of the white brotherhood and the
tive one. Our inclination, when we (Concluded on page 51)
The HIDDEN KINGDOM
A Sensational Revelation of the Secret Riders of Earth, and of the Com¬

ing War Foretold in Ancient Prophecy, the Battle of Armageddon.

(By (Ray (Palmer


When you read this story, you will tell yourself that it is fiction; the edi¬
tors assure you that it is. But what if it isn’t? What if, by some strange
coincidence, the writer has hit upon the truth? What if, as you read, you
find yourself repeating the word fiction to yourself in order to feel re¬
assured— because what you ate reading stirs some deep conviction,
coupled with dread, that it is not fiction? The writer is a craftsman: he
knows how to spin words with such skill that even a wary reader may
be duped into believing. To avoid any cry of hoax, the writer wishes to
state positively that he has only attempted to write a story of high ad¬
venture, of thrilling action, of exciting plot and development, and of
supreme entertainment. He has woven into his narrative a wealth of
knowledge of the mysterious, of philosophy, of occult and forbidden —
and hidden —Jhings. His story is soundly based on factual research. All
that happens is only an imaginative representation of what might con¬
ceivably be true, but to the best of his knowledge, is not. If you wish to
commend him on his logic, he will be delighted. But more than that... ?
One thing, however, is sure — you are in for a reading treat you will
never forget!
7
H MYSTIC

E said to the light, “Go


out!” and it did. At al¬
because they were talking about
doing things without using their
most the same instant hands) I crept out of bed and
the earthquake smashed San quietly down the stairs to the
Francisco flat. Afterward, my landing, where I remained, peer¬
father argued that there must ing down at the group visible
have been an initial trembler, through the arch of the big living
imperceptible to the senses, but room doors, slid now all the way
sufficient to sever the pipes lead¬ back into their recessed niches.
ing from the gas main. But to There were a half-dozen men
me, crouched that night on the and as many women—and my
stair landing, peering out through father—present. The women
the carved staves of the hand were dressed in evening gowns
rail, it seemed that the light had and because of my youth I did
obeyed my father’s mysterious not recognize them then as “dar¬
guest. ing,” so my attention swiftly cen¬
I was only six years- old, or a tered on the young man who was
little more. I was born in 1899. speaking.
My father was one of the guid¬ Even while sitting at ease in
ing lights of lusty San Francisco; a great lounging chair there was
some said the light was a bit on a certain animation and alertness
the misguiding side. However about him that made him a com¬
that may have been, we children manding figure. He already had
were kept strictly: to bed the attention of the group, and
at eight, church on Sunday, clean he instantly gained mine. His
clothes at all times, and a sincere hair was coal black, and quite
respect for the rod. long. It was wavy and his head
That particular night (no need was massive, with pronounced
to tell you the date, it’s in all cheekbones. His lips were wide,
the history books) I had been smiling, easy, likeable. As he sat
put to bed as usual. But I hadn’t directly facing me, I could stare
remained there. The gist of the into his dark and piercing eyes,
conversation that came drifting almost spellbound by the electric
up to me from the living room force that seemed to emanate
was intriguing. I was at that age from them. He was very tall,
when curiosity was becoming a taller than my father who is over
consuming thing. Also, I had a six feet. His hands were delicate,
vivid imagination along the lines with long, tapered fingers, giving
of Arabian Nights, flying car¬ the impression of the strength of
pets and magic lamps. So, when fine steel rather than of muscle.
the subject of magic came up in He was dressed in a very plain
the living room (I called it magic suit, contrasting sharply with
THE HIDDEN KINGDOM 9

the evening clothes of the other thing else, something that requires
men in the room. Yet he did not a far greater stretch of the imag¬
seem less dignified because of ination.”
that. The commanding young man
“It can be done,” he was- say¬ turned slightly toward my father.
ing. “The power of the mind is “Your attitude is a commendable
far greater than is generally one,” he said. “At least you shall
realized. I have witnessed tele¬ never be tricked. Yet, I say that
kinesis on several occasions. The both factors exist—luck, and the
subject was kept closely confined, ability to control that luck.”
and yet objects were seen to move “Is that ability due to any
apparently of their own volition.” special powers which most of us
“My own experience has been do not have?” asked my father.
more practical,” my father spoke “No. It is a power in all of us.”
up, and it seemed to me he was “Then you should be able to do
being a trifle sarcastic, for it was it!” The challenge in my father’s
the tone of voice he used when we vpice was obvious, and as before,
children had done something es¬ the tone was somehow insulting.
pecially stupid. “If it were true, “I should,” admitted the young
I should have had very bad luck man.
in several of my establishments. “Then why don’t you?”
Consider the results if my pa¬ “It is a matter more of know¬
trons were able to control the ing how to apply the power than
movements of the dice! Obvious¬ a question of whether or not one
ly they are not able to do so, and has it.”
it is not because they do not try. “You’ve witnessed the power
Every roll is accompanied by the in use, you have claimed. Then
utmost concentration. If the dice you must have some meagre ink¬
Could be disturbed in their natur¬ ling of how to apply it.”
al motion, they would be, I as¬ “Yes.”
sure you.” “Then do it.”
“What about young Fancher, “And if I should, what would
the other night?” asked another of you think of me? Would you re¬
the men, a fat-bellied person whose gard .me as a clever charlatan,
vest sported a huge gold chain or would you perhaps fear me—
that criss-crossed it, and from a for what I might do at your dice
loop of which hung a large elk’s tables?”
tooth. My father laughed aloud.
My father laughed. “Luck! After “Fear you! I fear nothing. Rath¬
all, we can understand luck; er, I think it is you who fear to be
and one such instance—or a doz¬ bested in your argument; which
en—cannot be construed as some¬ you have already been, in my
10 MYSTIC

mind, for it is a senseless argu¬ screamed because of the dark¬


ment to begin with. When ness or for some other reason, I
less practical discussions are was never to know, for at that
launched, it will be a dull eve¬ precise instant there began a fear¬
ning indeed.” ful roaring so tremendous in mag¬
The young man did not seem nitude that all other sound was
disturbed by my father’s ridicule. drowned out as though it had
“What would you like me to try?” never existed. With the same in¬
My father looked nonplussed. stant came a rolling, shuddering
Finally he said, “Anything! Far motion of the landing on which
be it from me to dictate an im¬ I crouched. To my terrified young
possibility. Select your own sub¬ inexperience it was the staircase
ject, and make it easy.” that was falling. I had no concept
The young man glanced up at that it was the whole country¬
the chandelier, which was an or¬ side that was going through this
nate glass one, with its gas man¬ terrible convulsion. I had no idea
tles flaring brightly. “Perhaps I that within the next two min¬
might contrive to turn off the utes all of San Francisco tumbled
gas in that light.” into ruin about me, For something
“You’ll have to turn it on struck me on the head and I knew
again,” said my father. “I’ll be no more.
dashed if I sit here in the dark—
if you succeed!”
There was general laughter,
I WON’T burden you with a long
description of what followed;
but it subsided quickly as the of how my father, in the dark¬
young man sat in his chair, still ness, fought his way up to the
at ease, but staring up at the lamp landing where he discovered my
with a peculiar look of detach¬ body, and as flames began to light
ment in his expression. the gloom, carried me outside. Nor
For a long moment nothing of how he fought his way back in
happened, then suddenly, exactly to rescue my older brother and
as though the key had been sister, but failed to save them
turned to shut off the flow of gas from perishing in the fire. Nor
in the pipe, the mantles stopped of the hours I wandered in my
flaring, faded to a dull red still nightie in the inferno of destroyed
visible in the resulting gloom, San Francisco, fleeing the advanc¬
then turned black. ing fire up toward Knob Hill, until
From below me there came at last I was rescued by a smoke-
several exclamations, a muttered blackened man who delivered me
curse from my father, and a muf¬ to a first-aid station that had been
fled scream from one of the set up in a clear space, where
women. Whether or not she eventually my father found me.
THE HIDDEN KINGDOM 11

All this is but a vague memory hardly because of the lure of find¬
to me now. More than forty years ing gold, as I never had and never
have passed, and it is a thing.I hoped to, but because I was curious
would rather forget. about life, about Nature, and was
But never have I forgotten the continually delving into her mys¬
handsome young man and the teries. In my youth I had grown
way he made the light go out. tired of the city and its ways.

I N the summer of 1947 I saw


the flying saucers. I was pros¬
The new San Francisco had bus¬
tled me about until I had rebelled
against it. With the death of my
pecting near my mountain cabin father and inheritance of a type of
when they came. It was a bright business that did not appeal to
blue flash from the equally bright me, I sold it out and went into
blue sky that first attracted my at¬ the Nature I was to come to love.
tention, reflecting from the shiny It took me a half-hour to reach
bottom of my pan as I emptied the ridge, and another fifteen min¬
it in the stream. I looked up. utes to climb it. And it must have
Coming across the mountains to been during that climb that the
the east was a chain of seven mysterious objects flew off and
bright objects, seemingly round, disappeared; for as I topped the
proceeding with great speed to¬ ridge and gazed into the flat little
ward the west. But suddenly they valley below, it was as bare as
dipped. Dropping down with great the palm of my hand, save for a few
rapidity, they disappeared from shrubs and scrubby trees and bar¬
my view behind a ridge that rose ren rocks. The climb up the ridge
up out of the flatland between had winded me, so I sat down on
the creek and the western moun¬ a rock to rest. While I rested, I
tains. relit my pipe. As the smoke curled
I got slowly to my feet, laid into the still air, I saw a man
my pan aside. My legs were out in the valley. He was walk¬
cramped with stooping, and I ing toward me.
stood there while I fumbled for my His presence in this vicinity
tobacco. The ridge was about a surprised me more than had the
mile and a half away, and when appearance and disappearance of
the shiny objects did not reappear, the mysterious flying objects.
I lit my pipe and started out. I To the east was a desolate area
felt that the walk was what I rimmed by a towering escarp¬
need anyway, and the shiny ob¬ ment almost' impossible to sur¬
jects had aroused my curiosity, mount. Nor was there any settled
which was as lively now as it had habitation within forty miles
been in my childhood. In fact, either to north or south. Water
my chosen life as a prospecter was also was a problem, and for a man
12 MYSTIC

to be walking into this area from “Yes,” he said, “I saw them.”


either direction was contrary to the “They landed in the valley,” I
dictates of common sense. There¬ said.
fore I waited his approach with “You saw that too?”
no little curiosity. “No,” I admitted. “I was down
Within twenty minutes he had at the creek panning for gold,
reached the slope. Seeing me, he when I noticed them. They dipped
waved and came on. As he drew down behind the ridge, so I came
near, I saw that he was a tall up to see. When I got here, they
man, perhaps thirty years old, were gone.”
and dressed in brand new levis “They went up the valley, fly¬
and a broad sombrero. He wore a ing low,” he said. “That’s why
khaki shirt and a Sam Browne you didn’t see them go.”
belt. His boots were plain and he “You must have had a good
carried a small knapsack over his look at them.”
shoulder. “I did. They were those flying
Reaching, me, he removed his saucers you’ve been hearing so
hat and revealed a mop of wavy much about.”
black hair and grinned at me. “I haven’t been hearing any¬
“Hello,” he said. “Never expected thing about them. I’ve been out
to find anyone out here.” here all summer, and I don’t have
I didn’t answer for a moment. access to either radio or news¬
Something about him was dis¬ papers.”
turbing, but I could not place “Oh, then you’ve missed one
what it was. “No more did I,” of the big stories of the year!”
I said finally. “Especially from I got to my feet. “Why don’t
that direction. You must have we go back down to my cabin,
had a long walk.” and have a bite to eat? Then you
He turned and looked back the can tell me about it.”
way he had come. “It is a long “Sounds fine to me,” he en¬
way, isn’t it?” he said. “But I thused. “I’m hungry as a dog,
like walking.” now that you mention it.”
“Did you see anything peculiar He followed me down the ridge
on the way?” I asked. and back to the creek, where I
“Yes. Did you?” picked up my pan and pick and
“Something in the sky?” shovel. Then we went to my cabin.
He looked at me. “What did All the way, I kept looking at
you see?” him, and back in my mind some¬
“Seven shiny aircraft, but not thing was stirring, but I couldn’t
any aircraft I’ve ever seen be¬ place it. I became disturbed more
fore. They were flying mighty and more as he looked at me
fast.” with his piercing black eyes.
THE HIDDEN KINGDOM 13

W E ate in silence. When


we’d finished, I lighted
ice cream cones and bananas, and
in all colors. The air force has
up my pipe. I offered him tobac¬ chased them, denied them, con¬
co, but he waved it away. firmed them, and even the presi¬
“Don’t smoke.” dent has been forced to make a
“Good thing,” I said. “It’s an comment. Some think it is a secret
unnecessary habit—but I get to weapon, either American or Rus¬
feeling lonesome sometimes, and sian; and some think they are
it gives me a sort of companion¬ signs from heaven. It’s all a great
ship.” mystery, and the newspapers have
“Why do you live out here in played it lip for all it’s worth. No¬
the wilderness, then?” body knows what makes them go.
“Can’t stand the city.” Some authorities think they fly
He laughed. “Neither can I. Is it on the waves of the Earth’s mag¬
for the same reason?” netic field. Some say they even
“You mean the people?” come from Venus or Mars, at
“No, not that. It’s the way velocities almost as great as light.
they live, not the people them¬ They’ve been tracked at speeds
selves. They are unable to help up to 2400 miles per hour several
themselves.” times.”
“Don’t want to, you mean” I I eyed him, my mind only
grunted. “Now, what about those half attentive because of the
. . . flying saucers, I think you strange feeling that was still dis¬
called ’em?” turbing me. “Have you any idea
He shrugged. “Nothing definite of what makes ’em go?” I asked.
really. Nobody’s even been able to “You saw them today. They didn’t
prove they exist. But lots of people make any noise; they didn’t have
have seen them . . ” any propellers or wings. And they
“They exist, all right,” I said. traveled fast. Seemed to me they
“I saw them.” went a good deal faster than any
He laughed. “That doesn’t prove jet plane, and I’ve seen a few of
anything. Try to tell your story those go over.”
to anybody who hasn’t. They ask “I think they travel by the
for pictures, for proof.” power of thought,” he said.
“People are always asking for I took my pipe out of my mouth
proof.” and dumped the ashes out of it,
“Well, to tell you about the tapping it against my chair. Un¬
saucers, they suddenly appeared accountably I was trembling, and
a few months ago, and everybody I wanted to hide it from him.
in the nation, even in the world, “That’s a strange thing to say,”
has been seeing them. They see I said. “Saying they travel on
everything from saucers to flying magnetic waves “ fantastic
14 MYSTIC

enough, but why go so far afield an absorbed look stole over his
as to say they travel by thought? face. Then, suddenly, the wick in
Aren’t you being just a little bit the lamp drew down, the flame
ridiculous?” went out. I looked at the smoke
He looked at me gravely. “Why rising from the lamp, watched
no. The human mind is a strange it taper out and disappear.
thing. It can do many things not I gripped the chair arms tightly.
generally accepted as possible.” “That’s the second time you’ve
“Have you ever seen it do any done that.”
of these impossible things?” “The second time?”
“Yes. One called telekinesis. "Yes,” I said, the icy chill in
I’ve sat in on groups where ob¬ my spine growing now until it
jects have been caused to move engulfed me in a wave of fearful
by sheer concentration. Dr. Rhine anticipation. “In San Francisco,
says, and has proved by rigid tests, in 1906. In my father’s house.”
that it is possible to dictate the “You?” he eyed me doubtfully.
fall of dice by the power of the “I was only a kid. I watched you
mind.” do it from the landing of the stair¬
I dropped my pipe. As I stopped case—just before the ceiling fell
to pick it up, an icy chill raced in.”
up and down my spine. But when He looked at me wonderingly,
I faced him again, I was calm. and then he noted my tight grip
I said slowly, “If you’ve seen it on the chair. Suddenly he smiled.
done, you must know what you’re “And you’re afraid there’ll be an¬
talking about, and maybe some¬ other earthquake?”
thing of how it’s done?” A long moment I stared at him,
“I have some ideas,” he admit¬ then I relaxed. “No,” I said. “I
ted. never did believe you had any¬
I got up, took down the kero¬ thing to do with that! You may
sene lamp from the shelf and put be able to put out a light by the
it on the table. Although it was power of your mind, but you
bright daylight I lit it with a couldn’t smash a whole city.”
match and replaced the glass. I “No,” he said. “Not I.”
looked at the flame burning
steadily, then looked at him. I LOOKED at his slim, tapered
fingers, seeming strong as
“Turn it out,” I said.
For an instant there was si¬ steel in spite of their delicate look.
lence in the cabin, then he smiled, Then I looked up again at his
and his eyes twinkled. “Challeng¬ eyes.
ing me, eh?” “You should be at least seventy
“No. Just asking.” years old.”
He looked gravely at the light; He nodded. “At least.”
THE HIDDEN KINGDOM 15

“You certainly don’t look it.” questions.


He was smiling -it me. “You’re At last I heard it, the sound
trying to calm yourself; so you that had obviously first attract¬
are making small talk. Why don’t ed his attention. It was a strange
you speak right up?” vibrating sound, like the beat of
“All right You came off that a great piston that is somehow
flying saucer, didn’t you?” off-stroke, so that its rhythm is
“Yes.” never a rhythm that can be fol¬
I grunted. “Don’t know why I lowed, but constantly changing
should be surprised. I knew it all in pulse-rate. Its eerie unworldly
along. I must have half- tempo beat into my mind and be¬
recognized you the minute I saw gan to overwhelm it with terror.
you up close. But I wasn’t pre¬ “Steady!” he warned. “I need
pared to admit it so I buried it in your attention!”
my subconscious—the implica¬ I clamped my teeth together
tions were so . . .” to stop the unaccountable trem¬
He was sitting suddenly very bling that had overtaken my bones.
erect, not paying any attention to I tried hard not to listen to the
me. He seemed to be listening. I off-beat pulsations that were re¬
fell silent and listened too. I heard verberating now like a giant
nothing. But suddenly, without drum being hit by dozens of sticks
reason, there was terror in me. I all at once, each in its own and
felt a queer prickling of my skin, conflicting timing.
an almost electric effect in the What was it he had said? He
air, and the blood began to pound needed my ... attention. I concen¬
in my temples. trated on the need for my atten¬
“What ... is it?” I asked tion. What sort of a need was
hoarsely. that? How could my attentive¬
He got up, took a swift step ness be of aid to him? I literally
over to me and placed a hand on drove my mind out to meet his,
my shoulder. “Remain seated. focused on the black pits of his
Concentrate on me. Give me every eyes, dove deep into them. . . .
bit of your strength, and ask no A smile hung fleetingly on his
questions. We are in great dan¬ lips. He looked down at me. “That
ger.” was good. They can’t touch us . . .
I focused my attention on him, the way they are now.”
stared up at his eyes, which were I merely looked at him. I didn’t
looking into space with a deadly ask the question. But it could
serious look about the narrowed not be kept out of my mind. Who?
lids. Sweat began to bead my fore¬ As though compelled, my gaze
head, and roll down my armpits. turned toward the open door, and
But I obeyed him and asked no outside the cabin the atmosphere
16 MYSTIC

seemed to be shimmering. Though figures they were! Tiny, midget


I could see nothing, there was figures, no more than three feet
something there—something be¬ tall. But they seemed to grow
yond the range of my vision, not larger as they leaped toward the
because of distance, but because of cabin. I gasped as I saw them
something else, some property of come—what strange figures they
invisibility not due to light and its were. Their costumes—were
reflection. crazy! Some of them wore uni¬
He gripped my shoulder tighter. forms, but uniforms of a time
“But they are more advanced long past—uniforms of-the min¬
than we suspected. They are not ions of the Conquistadores. Span¬
going to remain ... as they are! ish clothing of centuries gone.
Concentrate again! I must send a And there, in the forefront, a
message . . .” leaping, grimacing little man in
All at once a vast dizziness, leather doublet and pantaloons,
and an even vaster weakness be¬ bearing a gleaming rapier. Im¬
gan to come over me. I tried hard mediately behind him was a
to hang on, to keep my mind buckskin-clad frontiersman, long
linked with his, but the room rifle clutched in the crook of his
began to swirl around me in great
sweeps, and vertigo washed over Now all swam into darkness,
me like a wave. His fingers on my and even before the first of the
shoulder were digging in like iron, advancing figures reached the door
holding me with him, holding me of my cabin I sank into uncon¬
back from the unconsciousness sciousness.
that was dragging me down into
darkness.
Vaguely my eyes found the
I COULD not have been uncon¬
scious for very long, because
door, and even more vaguely I when I opened my eyes I was ly¬
began to see things out there. ing on the floor of my cabin and
First, hanging only a few feet my companion knelt on one knee
over the ground, I saw a strange beside me, his hand still on my
blue shimmering, an oddly metal¬ shoulder. He was facing a group
lic shape that seemed ghostly, but of men and one woman standing
even as I watched, was less around us in a semicircle. As I
ghostly than the preceding mo¬ looked at them, the conviction
ment, until it became solid and that I was having hallucinations
I saw it as a more crude, less swept over me again. One of the
graceful counterpart of the flying men was the buckskin-clad fron¬
saucers I’d seen while panning gold. tiersman, who held his rifle in
Swarming from it were hu¬ nervous fingers, its barrel pointed
man figures, but what strange directly at me.
THE HIDDEN KINGDOM 17

For the moment I could not ex¬ of the man who had tried to end
amine the others, for this one my life. He was looking at my
seemed determined in the next mysterious companion, who had
instant to end my life. There risen to his feet, his hand still
was a snarl on his lips. outstretched. Slowly, as we both
He was speaking, but I could watched, he opened his palm, and
not understand his words. I rec¬ there, flattened by the impact,
ognized the language, however. He was the bullet that had been fired
was speaking French. His voice at my head. My companion tossed
was loud and threatening. it at the feet of the frontiersman.
“Non, non,” my companion an¬ “Mon Dieu!” said the French-
swered him.
A sneer curled over the lips Behind him another man
of the man who spoke French. spoke, this time speaking Span¬
Suddenly he lifted the rifle and ish, which I understood. It was
aimed it directly at my head. He the man in the leather doublet
pulled the trigger and I saw, in and pantaloons. “You are a fine
that split second, the sputter and one to call upon the name of God!”
spark of flint. I was a dead man, he said. “It is most inappropriate.”
and I knew it! The remark brought a coarsely
But faster than light, it seemed, musical female laugh, and my
my companion lifted his hand eyes turned toward the woman
and as the roar of the gun shat¬ who stood in the doorway.
tered the silence of the room and “A nice trick, Mr. . . . what’s
a burst of smoke came from the your name?” She spoke in Eng¬
muzzle that obscured everything lish, and she addressed her ques¬
for a long minute, I thought I tion to my companion.
saw his palm intervene between He looked at her calmly. “Al-
my head and the muzzle. cibedes is my name,” he said.
Almost unthinkingly, I rolled The woman lifted her eyebrows,
frantically on the floor, scram¬ and as she did so I noticed that
bled to one side, and lurched to she was quite beautiful, but that
my feet. I stood with my back to her beauty was marred by an
the cabin wall, waiting for the air of hardness that gave harsh
smoke to clear. Unbelievingly I lines to her face, a harshness
realized that I was , unhurt. In that was more characteristic than
spite of the close range, the bul¬ featuristic. “As far back as that!”
let had missed me. How, I could she exclaimed. “Then you must be
not imagine, but it had. from Outside?”
The smoke lifted toward the He nodded briefly.
ceiling and floated out of the door, The Spaniard uttered an ex¬
and I saw first the frowning face clamation of alarm and stepped
18 MYSTIC

forward. “Outside! Then we’d caught a Tarter.”


best be away from here! Here, She laughed contemptuously.
Dumont, let my cold steel per¬ “That’s as much as you know,”
form the task for which your she said. “There have been a few
lead is impotent!” With the words improvements made lately, and
he sprang at me, whipping his I’m going to show you one of
blade in a gleaming arc of steel. them right now.”
Once more I faced death, and Al- She drew a tiny tube from her
cibedes was yards away. bodice, from between her full
But not so the girl. Like a fiery breasts, and pointed it at Alci¬
whirlwind she leaped forward, bides. A look of surprise spread
flung herself between me and the over his face, but before he could
advancing Spaniard. She pressed move she pressed a button on the
her back against me, and I felt the tube. A pale reddish ray sprang
warmth of her flesh with an al¬ out from the opening in the muz¬
most unrecognized surprise. Some¬ zle of the tube and touched Alci-
how I still retained the subcon¬ bedes. He sagged in his tracks,
scious impression that what I was and slumped to the floor.
witnessing was phantasmagori- “Pick him up and carry him
cal, and not real at all. There¬ into the ship,” the girl ordered.
fore, to feel the solidity of her “He’ll be paralyzed for several
body against mine was surpris¬ hours.”
ing, and it served only to make Then, as the surprised Span¬
more incomprehensible the thing iard stared, and the group of Con-
that I was witnessing and partak¬ quistadores moved forward to
ing in so desperate a fashion. carry the inert form of my friend
“No!” she said. “What have I out of the cabin, she turned to¬
brought along with me—a lot of ward me, took me by the hand
cowards!” and smiled up at me. “You remind
The Spaniard halted, his blade me strangely of a man I once
lowered its point to the floor. knew in San Francisco,” she said.
“Perhaps so,” he said. “But not “Come, let’s get into the ship. . . .”
a lot of fools. Don’t you know But I made no move to accom¬
what will happen to us if we pany her. Instead all the eerie¬
don’t get back to our base? This ness of the past few minutes be¬
Outsider has already sent for came as nothing to the flood of
help, or I miss my guess. We’d cold that now began to chill my
best kill this fellow, and be off.” spine, my blood and my brain.
“What good will that do? You For the second time this day a
can’t kill Alcibides.” phantom came out of my mem¬
“Of course not. Nor can we ory, and grew to dreadful pro¬
take him captive. We will have portions. “San Francisco . . .” I
THE HIDDEN KINGDOM 19

mumbled, and my gaze held for a place and pointed it at me. I sud¬
moment oh her dark eyes, her denly went limp, darkness
smooth complexion, her full red slammed over me like a wave
lips, and then traveled down over once more and the last thing I
her white throat, the full curve saw was Estaban’s leather boots
of her half-exposed breasts, and as I fell at his feet.
down over the spangled velvet
dress that draped itself so reveal-
ingly to her form. There leaped
I T was Alcibides’ hand on my
shoulder that wakened me.
into my mind’s eye a duplicate He had regained his senses be¬
of that dress, only casually noted, fore I, and he sat now beside me,
but remembered just the same, looking down at me with an ex¬
as I had seen it... a long time ago. pression of deep thought on his
“What are you staring at?” face.
she asked coyly, with a suggestive “You certainly have a wonder¬
toss of her head. She moved a bit ful access to your memory for
closer to me, took both my arms one so young.”
in her hands, and pressed her “Young? "I’m forty-eight.” I
breasts against my chest. struggled to sit up and stretched
“That . . . dress!” I gasped. my muscles, which tingled strange¬
She frowned, moved back again, ly. Then I looked at him curiously,
looked down at the dress. “What and almost at once with an equal
about it?” Then she smiled again curiosity at my surroundings as
and looked at me. “You like it? two thoughts struck me.
It’s my favorite dress. It’s the He seemed to divine both
one I was wearing when . . .” thoughts. “You’re in our lovely
“When the earthquake ...” I Angela’s ‘flying saucer,’ as those
blurted out before she could fin¬ below us who are seeing it now
ish. must be calling it — and com¬
She looked startled. “How pared to me, you are just a baby.”
could you know that!” “Is that her name?” I asked.
“I was there,” I said hoarsely, My gaze roved around the plain
“when the ceiling fell on you. And metal walls of the tiny room in
Alcibides was there too.” which we were. It was peculiarly
“Alcibides!” Suddenly fright shaped: like a piece of pie with
leaped into her eyes and she half one bite taken from the point of
whirled to the door. Then she it. “Angela. Not very appropri¬
called to the Spaniard, “Esta- ate; there’s nothing angelic about
ban!—catch him before he falls, her.”
and put him into the ship . . .” He smiled. “She’s very sweet,
and in the same instant whipped although a bit misguided.”
the little metal tube from its hiding I stared at him. “Your chari-
20 MYSTIC

tability is quite extreme. Or else the very dress, or rather its very
you are not very observant.” image, she is wearing now. The
“I have looked very closely into reason for that is simple, really.
her heart.” Persons who have passed through
I lifted my hand in protest. “I death often wear either the sem¬
must still be dazed. This conver¬ blance of clothes in which they
sation isn’t making much sense. died, or a counterpart of a favor¬
Let’s go back to the beginning. I ite article of clothing. This dress
think you commented on my mem¬ happens to be both, in Angela’s
ory; why was that?” case. She wears it infrequently,
“You gave Angela quite a scare though, as she prefers to appear
by remembering her.” in her own natural beauty.
“How so? I know she reacted “Death is not what it seems
violently, but was she scared?” to be—it is merely a sort of re¬
“Very much so. You see, when birth. Man has, in actuality, three
you told her you were present bodies: a flesh and blood body,
with me in your father’s house an astral body, and an ethereal
the night she . . .” body. The first part of existence,
“That’s it!” I said excitedly. the flesh and blood existence, is
“That’s what’s been bothering something like a continuance of
me! She was killed that night!” the initial existence in the womb
“Yes. And in the dress you re¬ in which the body is protected
membered.” and developed to the point at
“But how could that be! The which it can survive for itself;
dress, I mean. I refuse even to death is the point at which the
think about her being dead, be¬ astral body is separated from its
cause quite obviously she is not. protective "flesh body—actually as
Nor is she over seventy, as she’d much a ‘birth’ as the initial birth
have to be, if she was one of the from the womb.
young ladies present that eve¬ “That is what happened to An¬
ning.” gela. She exists today, every bit
“I’ll explain it all to you; but as real as when she lived in her
ask no questions until I finish, or flesh body, on what mystics are
your bewilderment will only pleased to call the astral plane.
grow.” These words are misleading, as
“Go ahead,” I said. the astral plane is not strictly a
“First, Angela is very much location, but merely the Earth
alive, as you’ve noted, which is itself, sometimes coincident with
almost as disturbing to me as it the surface on which fleshly hu¬
is to you. But just the same, she mans live, sometimes above it,
was killed in your father’s house to varying heights, and some¬
over forty years ago, wearing times below it. You might say
THE HIDDEN KINGDOM 21

the atmosphere of the Earth, at the point where he may succeed


its outer limits, which are far in reaching at least a portion of
more distant from the ground- his goal.
and-sea surface than today’s hu¬ “Science is always the means,
mans believe, is the actual sur¬ and the supposedly empty reaches
face of the Earth, and that where of space are filled with giant ships,
you live is quite near the core. surprisingly like the imaginative
“To an astral inhabitant, you vessels often referred to in Earth¬
live in dark caves. To an ethereal ly fiction. Some of these ships
inhabitant (in what you call are bigger than the Earth itself.
space), the astral humans also I myself captained one for several
live in caverns. thousand years.
“I am an inhabitant of outer “Angela is captain of a smaller
space, where invisible worlds ex¬ ship, one capable of traveling in
ist, far beyond your comprehen¬ her astral realm, and because of
sion or your ability to detect, even her forceful, energetic nature, she
with your most sensitive instru¬ is dominant over many people
ments. I was born in ancient far older than she. Angela is a
Greece, and by Earth reckoning, born leader, with many talents.
I am more than 9,000 years old. She will one day be one of the
I lived in the Greece of which best loved of women in the ether-
only a few misunderstood ruins ean reaches of this universe,
exist today. For several thousand which is just one of many millions
years I lived on Earth, after what of other universes.
you call death, in the astral world “I have come here, now, as I
now called home by Angela and did forty years ago, to observe
her companions. It is a teeming and to record. The Earth is fast
world, filled with many races, na¬ approaching the period in its his¬
tions, empires and in some regions tory (through which all worlds
with wars more tremendous than such as this eventually go) in
any you have known. which occurs that event known
“Then I went through the sec¬ to you as Armageddon. It is the
ond rebirth, which, very remotely, period in which the inhabitants
is similar to the first death, and of the astral regions discover the
yrent out into the area Man has means of controlling the races
always dreamed of penetrating of the living, and doing battle
by mechanical means, even as he among and with them for domi¬
does today. Strangely enough, nance of both realms.
for the first time in the history “To my extreme embarrass¬
of Earth (which is far more an¬ ment, I have discovered the degree
cient than you realize), Man’s of progress being made, without
scientific knowledge is reaching sufficient preparation to Combat
22 MYSTIC

it instantly. In short, I and my that has ever faced the normal


companions have been caught un¬ evolutionary development of
awares. An impossible thing has Earth. First, she and her fellows
happened. An ethereal human has have succeeded in usurping the
been made captive by an astral domain of the living. They can
human. Astral humans have de¬ walk once more among men, in¬
veloped such scientific knowledge distinguishable from the living.
that they can wield potent weap¬ This, coupled with their superior
ons against us. True, they cannot scientific knowledge, which can
‘kill’ Us, for there is no death pos¬ now be translated into corporeal
sible for us in the usual sense of actuality directly rather than by
the word, but they can and have inspiration, as was the atom
caused us much inconvenience. bomb, faces humanity with an
“What is more important is the overwhelming disadvantage in the
fact that you have noticed so for¬ coming battle. Unless something
cibly, that astral humans have is done, defeat will be their lot,
found the way to assume the and Earth will be lost to us as
semblance of the living human the fertile Garden of Eden that
to such a degree that there is it has been up to now.
actually no difference. Angela, as “What will happen has been
she captured us, was as flesh-and- pictured often in your science
blood as you.” fiction stories. This last ghastly
“I can assure you of that!” I war of Armageddon will result
interrupted. in total depopulation of all man¬
Alcibides smiled. “Her beauty kind from the corporeal surface
did strike you, then.” of the Earth, and establishment
“She’s pretty, yes,” I admitted. of the astral humans in their
“But apparently death hasn’t im¬ place with what will amount to
proved her; she’s as much a ... a fleshly immortality, which has’
tramp ... as she was in San ever been the goal of those who
Francisco.” know nothing of the realities be¬
“How would we judge the ripe yond all deaths.
if it were not for the unripe?” “Picture it! No longer the plan¬
said Alcibides mysteriously. “Per¬ ned orderly progress from initial'
sonally, I find more of real beauty creation of the entity upon the
in immaturity than in the full planet through the regions and
bloom of ripe development. I existence of the astral, and on
was always partial to the very into- the everlasting wonder of
young. But to go on with my ex¬ existence among the stars where
planation . . . there is no more death but only
‘What Angela has shown us progress through marvel after
adds up to the greatest danger marvel to a goal unapproachable.
THE HIDDEN KINGDOM 23

Instead, no more new entities, but mark upon it?”


only a fixed number of already “Because of the fear it struck
existing entities, bound forever into the heart of our lovely An¬
because of their own ignorance gela.”
to a retrograde activity. The end “Again, how so?”
result can only be self-annihila¬ “Because when you remem¬
tion. It is the one great tragedy bered her death, she knew you
the cosmos should never see. And had been present, and when you
the defeat of the astral realm in said I was also there she remem¬
the era of Armageddon is the only bered me too, as the young man
way it can be averted!” who turned out the gas light. And
I stared at Alcibides aghast. A thus she assumed that you were
giant hand was clutching with not what you seemed to be, an
chill fingers at my heart, and ordinary human, but one of us—
terror welled up in me. and she has imagined, because
“So that is why you have come of her mistake, that we have in¬
to Earth in your flying saucer?” tentionally drawn her into a trap
I whispered. from which she thinks her
“Very few battles of Armaged¬ prompt action and flight is freeing
don have been lost. We always in¬ her.”
tervene.” “But I am not one of you.”
“But what of free will?” I “And therefore there is no
asked. “Isn’t that a tenet of al¬ trap,” finished Alcibides.
most all religions—and religion “Which means it is we who are
must be based on these things ensnared.”
you have told me—that man is “Yes.”
free to choose for himself? I paled. ‘What are we going to
. “Free will is a matter of de¬ do?”
cision based on experience. Is free “Wait,” he said, “and hope that
will for babes without experience? my message got through!”
Is free will for unborn entities,
still in their mother’s womb, but
entities all the same? Should they
W HERE are we going?” I
asked Alcibides after a
be doomed to eons of darkness be¬ moment of silence. “Where is
cause of a false premise?” this contraption taking us?”
; I nodded in involuntary agree¬ “At present we are about 500
ment. miles above what you call the sur¬
For a moment there was silence face of the Earth. We are head¬
in the little metal room. Then ing for an ancient region called
once more I thought of his open¬ the Caves of Aoasu, once known
ing remark. “What about my mem¬ as one of the Seven Holy Moun¬
ory?” I asked. “Why did you re¬ tains. It is here, among the re-
24 MYSTIC

mains of a tremendous ancient these great caverns are linked by


science, some of it still intact, such roadways, constructed many
that Angela and her group have thousands of years ago by buil-
established their headquarters. As ers from Outside. Such roadbuild¬
a matter of fact, I believe we have ing feats as this could not be
arrived.” performed by humans on the as¬
A slight shudder of the craft tral planes.”
in which we rode accompanied I stared, bewildered by the im¬
his last words, and there was an mensity of rock that surrounded
almost imperceptible jar. After a me. Off in the distance many tun¬
few minutes the door to our pri¬ nels branched into this central
son opened, and the Spaniard, cavern, some of them brilliantly
Estaban, stood in the opening. lighted.
“Come,” he said. “I will escort “I can’t believe it!” I exclaimed.
you to more permanent lodgings.” “You told me we were 500 miles
He stepped aside and indicated above the surface of the Earth,
the narrow corridor beyond the yet this is not empty space, nor
door, which I found ran in a tight even empty atmosphere. This is
circle. solid rock, and no doubt about
“Make no effort to escape or it.”
cause trouble,” he warned as I “In a way you are right, of
passed him. “This place is most course,” he said. “Your physisists
impregnable.” I caught the mean¬ have some vague idea of how this
ingful look he shot at Alcibides, could be so, in their sub-atomic
directly behind me. concepts. This solid rock that you
Almost immediately we came to observe is composed of the same
the entrance port of the circular pattern of atomic structure that
ship, and I stepped out onto a makes up rocks on your surface.
rocky floor to find myself in a As an illustration, imagine your
dimly illuminated cavern, vast own body, without any increase
beyond belief. The flying saucer in mass, expanded some 1,600
in which we had come sat on tri¬ times in volume.”
pod legs on a level floor, almost “I wouldn’t photograph very
directly before a large black open¬ well,” I admitted.
ing in the cavern wall which led “Exactly. You’d be so tenuous
downward at a steep slant into that you’d actually seem to be an
perfect blackness. almost perfect vacuum insofar as
“The roadway by which we as¬ surface instruments could detect.”
cended to this place,” explained “Do you mean that is what has
Alcibides, as though noting my happened to me? Have I been ex¬
unvoiced question in that strange panded 1,600 times?”
perceptive ability of his. “All of He looked at me strangely. “No.
THE HIDDEN KINGDOM 25

In physical proportions, you are amazement at the evidence of a


exactly the same size as you were tremendous and ancient civiliza¬
before. If anything, a trifle tion that the illuminated tunnel
smaller.” presented.
I pondered upon his answer First, we boarded a concave
for a long moment, frowning. I object shaped something like a
kicked at the rock beneath my huge sea shell, and seated our¬
feet. “But this seems solid to me, selves in velvety-soft cusions
although you say its atomic struc¬ that were made of something I
ture is some 1,600 times more ex¬ could not identify. Estaban ap¬
pansive than ours. . .” parently did nothing except sit
Behind me Estaban laughed. in the forward portion of the
“Don’t be so stupid. It seems shell, but instantly it lifted a few
solid because you’re equally un¬ inches off the rocky floor and we
solid!” began to float swiftly down the
I turned to face the Spaniard, illuminated way.
who stood in the port of the sau¬ Next, my wondering gaze took
cer behind us. “What do you in the ornate carvings that lined
mean?” the tunnel on both sides and even
“When we discharged our su- on the ceiling, a continuous pan¬
peratomic structure down below, orama of bas-relief sculpture that
naturally we had to discharge would have put Michael Angelo
yours too. In short, my friend, to shame. As we moved forward,
you’re . . . dead. As dead as I the sculpture told a story, obvi¬
am!” Once more he burst into ously historical, for there were
laughter. “And now, if you don’t scenes of exploration, a great bat¬
mind, we will proceed on our way.” tle, a city being built, all curi¬
My mind numbed by his words, ously and startlingly like some of
I noted vaguely the way he pointed the ancient Persian paintings I
and stumbled on ahead of him, had once seen in a museum. That
Alcibides marching along beside they were incredibly old there
me, his hand on my arm in com¬ could be no doubt. The aura of
forting fashion. thousands of years lay over every¬
thing, for here and there even
W E went toward one of
the illuminated tunnels
some of the most robust of fig¬
ures were softened by age and
opening on the large cavern which decomposition of the rock.
obviously served as the landing “What is all this?” I asked Al¬
field for the saucer-ship; and as cibides in bewilderment, waving
we entered it, I forgot the stun¬ a hand toward the carved walls.
ning news that Estaban had con¬ “The sculptures depict the
veyed to me in my wonder and story of the great deeds of one
26 MYSTIC

Hoab, 9,000 years ago, who over¬ “We do not even know if my
came a powerful and evil false friends got our message,” he said.
god in this place, and liberated I fell silent and continued to
more than a thousand million cap¬ watch the magnificent decora¬
tives enslaved in the empire of the tions on the cavern walls as We
false god. He built a new empire, passed. Gradually the cavern wid¬
and his capital city was the most ened, until suddenly it debouched
beautiful ever erected in this upon an opening that I did not at
plane. I believe that we will enter first recognize as an incredibly
this city in a few moments.” extensive and lofty cavern. Above
“You use the past tense,” said me was a hazy blueness that al¬
Estaban suddenly, from his posi¬ most seemed to be the blue of a
tion in the prow of the floating night sky; until I saw the im¬
shell on which we rode. “The city mensity of rocky crags far over
is beautiful still, even if much of my head. ^Straight ahead the
it has fallen into ruin.” blueness was lost in mist, at a
“That is good,” remarked Al- distance which must have been
cibides. more than a hundred miles. But
Estaban frowned at him. directly before us, and below, as
“What do you mean?” though in a huge valley, was the
“I mean it is good that you most wonderful spectacle I have
have a sense of beauty. I am much ever seen.
encouraged.” It was a city—but what a city!
“We are not as primitive as you Arranged in a gigantic pattern
might think,” said Estaban. “You I first identified as a six-pointed
will not be enslaved as were the star, and then realized was really
minions of the empire that Hoab a pair of triangles interlocked,
defeated. But all the same, you was a city almost thirty miles
will find that escape is impossible. in extent, all built of what seemed
Nor can you be rescued. Every to be marble of the most beauti¬
road leading to the city is im- ful hues and quartz and crystal¬
pregnably guarded by new weap¬ line formations that resembled
ons which we have set up superior nothing so much as tremendous
even to the weapons of the an¬ jewels—diamonds, rubies, ame¬
cients.” . thysts, agate, emeralds and opal.
“I fully realize your scientific The buildings were faery, soar¬
development,” said Alcibides. “I ing things; massively impressive
am sure it is sufficient to accom¬ piles; tiny, delicate bowers. Some
plish what you say.” were in perfect states of preser¬
My heart sank at his words. vation, others fallen into majes¬
“You don’t seem very hopeful of tic ruins. Here was a combination
rescue?” of teeming, living city and loom-
THE HIDDEN KINGDOM 27

ing ruins that reminded of Ro¬ We landed on a high terrace


man and Athenian remains; and and stepped out of the shell. Esta¬
an utterly unworldly utterly new ban led us into the building and
kind of architecture so strange as through corridors of such mag- -
to be difficult to place into any nificence that my breath was
classification whatever. taken away.
“Hoab reigned here for thou¬ “No potentate of Earth ever im¬
sands of years,” said Estaban. agined such munificence!” I
“But now we are its rulers, and gasped.
soon we will rule far more.” “A bit too gaudy,” said Esta¬
His voice took on a note of pride, ban guardedly. “But it was built
and he turned flashing eyes upon in an era when such things were
us. “Not even the Outsiders can far more important than they
prevent us!” are now.”
Alcibides was looking beyond “We are being taken before
the city, his brow furrowed, his Angela?” asked Alcibides.
eyes surrounded by serious Estaban’s eyebrows lifted.
wrinkles. “It does not seem necessary to
“I can well believe you,” he tell you much,” he observed. “But
said. “If that is your invasion since you ask, that is where I am
fleet beyond the city.” taking you. She wishes to ques¬
I looked quickly -in the same tion you in the presence of His
direction, and gasped as my eye Excellency, Napoleon the Great.”
beheld, row upon row, literally “Oh no!” I groaned.
thousands of gigantic silvery Alcibides turned to me. “Is
shapes, disk-like, metallic, ominous. that so strange? Do you think
“We have accomplished much that the ambitions of men die
in thirty years,” said Estaban with their bodies?”
with studied modesty. And as if “I’ve never thought of it one
to further the impression he was way or the other,” I said. “But
trying to convey, he pointed cas¬ after hearing that name, I’ll find
ually toward the center of the it hard to rationalize anything
city. “There is our destination,” from now on.”
he indicated a tremendously tall “You will hear even stranger
building, its spire gleaming like a names,” said Alcibides.
giant diamond all in one piece. We came now to a magnificent¬
“There you will be made comfort¬ ly carved ebon door, set in what
able, complete freedom of the seemed to be a solid diamond. Be¬
city if you wish it, for there is fore it stood several Napoleonic
no way of escape.” soldiers, in full dress uniform,
He sped the shell now into the stiffly at attention.
air toward the building. “Now I believe you!” I said
MYSTIC

heavily.
The doors swung open, and we
A NGELA beckoned us for¬
ward now, and we walked to
walked through them. On the op¬ the base of the pair of thrones.
posite side of the room beyond “Alcibides,” she said. “You
was a pair of thrones, heavily came from Outside. Would you
draped with crimson and gold care to explain the reason for
hangings. On one of the thrones your visit, and whether or not
sat a man in purple knee-length you have any companions?
velvet trousers, buckled shoes, and “I have no objection, dear girl,”
a soft white shirt. At first glance said Alcibides. “Perhaps if you
I knew him for the man he was, will listen to my story, it will in
Napoleon himself. Then my some small measure sway you to
glance slid to the other throne a new way of thinking.”
and I stopped dead in my tracks. “I doubt it,” she said. “But go
. There, leaning gracefully with on. We’re listening.”
one elbow on the arm of the He turned a moment toward
throne, her chin resting calculat- Napoleon. “While you listen, per¬
ingly but carelessly upon her haps it would be well for you to
half-closed fingers, was Angela. remember an event in your own
The light from the crystal win¬ Earthly life—the battle of Water¬
dows that lined two sides of the loo.”
great room fell softly in gleam¬ Napoleon looked at him calmly.
ing highlights on the whiteness “I have never forgotten it. And
of her body, unadorned except for you’re quite correct—I’ll not make
the cascade of her hair which the same mistakes again. If what
tumbled about her shoulders. you have to say makes sense, I
Beside me I heard Alcibides’ shall take it as good advice.”
soft but all too audible voice. “Do “I expected you would,” Alci¬
you think now that she is ill- bides. ' “But to answer your ques¬
named?” tion, Angela, the reason for my
I felt my face flush crimson visit should be well known to you.
as I saw that she had heard. I It has been the custom, for age
half turned to Alcibides and whis¬ upon age, since the beginning of
pered fiercely. “She could do more the Earth for those of us who have
than paralyze me for this!” gone into the Outside in the serv¬
He grinned at me, the first time ice of the Creator and as helpful
his smile had ever assumed that brothers to those who are to fol¬
homely quality. “No. She is a low after us, to return periodically
woman. And besides, I have to assist as much as we can toward
looked into her heart.” He paused the ultimate goal for which you are
an instant, then added: “And I all striving.
have looked into yours.” “My visit, this time, is a pre-
THE HIDDEN KINGDOM 29

liminary one. I have no idea when Earth to many thousands of miles


our regulating visit will occur, high, a great work exists. It is a
when we will come in power to needed work, and you can per¬
rebuild what you shall tear down, form it. It would be great glory
but perhaps that depends on your¬ to do it alone, without our help.
selves more than upon us; upon “Great have been the wars on
your readiness or unreadiness....” Earth in the past thirty years.
“We are ready,” commented Many have been the slain. Legion
Angela briefly. are the vengeful and the hateful.
“Then we are also ready,” said Great are the hells that have been
Alcibides. “But since we are not set up, even on the borders of your
destroyers, but builders, we will own mountain. The suffering of
not arrive prematurely. Thus it millions upon thousands of mil¬
will be given to you to accom¬ lions is incredible. They thirst
plish your will. Yet, I beg of you for rescue, for kindness, for hos¬
to listen to me and ponder well pitalization, for education, for
on my words, before you embark the right path. But they are blind
on the course which you will se¬ and helpless, and enveloped in
lect. It is within your power, and unceasing rage. They strike out
it is your glorious opportunity, right and left, dealing punish¬
to work a great good, to make of ments without regard for jus¬
this Earth a shining jewel among tice. They battle tremendously
the many other shining jewels among themselves for power.
of the great family that belong “You can bring them back to
to the Creator. sanity, to humanity, to love and
„ “You have built an armada, a to eternally progressing life.
fleet of ships so far advanced over Your great science, your great
anything ever before achieved on courage, if directed to the task in
this planet, or for that matter hand, can accomplish what may¬
on any other world which has hap even the gods may not—for
reached the stage of evolution it is in my memory that once be¬
known as Armageddon, that it is fore during my existence the
within your power to perform a gods were tried: a comet came
miracle that will be heard and into the orbit of the Earth during
sung for uncounted ages among just such a period of darkness as
the galaxies. Here, within your this, and before the awful storm
own system of caverns, in the even they were helpless, and fail¬
great holy mountain of Aoasu, ure was their lot. Then, as now,
and in the other six holy moun¬ success came only because a few
tains of the Earth, plus all the great souls rose out of the Earth
inhabited planes of the lower as¬ and with their leadership, gained
tral from the surface of the eternal glory for themselves and
MYSTIC

salvation for the Earth. Today it on your own terms, with your
is not a comet, but an unforseen own weapons. But never has the
scientific advancement on the Brotherhood come armed with
lower planes, a gaining of knowl¬ anything except the power of the
edge never before attained ex¬ Eternal. Never have we come ex¬
cept on the Outside. cept with open hands and with
“There are three ways in which love. Never has such power been
you can use your knowledge: defeated by mere science and
You can do as you now plan, and the control of the elements of
invade the corporeal plane, de¬ destruction.”
stroy all the living from their “Never have you been met with
fleshly abode, and take for your that science!” exclaimed Napo¬
own the domain that has never leon. “I think that you assume
been intended for the world of too much. But listen, Alcibides!
the spirit, assuming to yourselves We have no intention of attacking
the garb of flesh that will deny the Brotherhood. We have no de¬
you access to the higher realms, sire for the Outside. It is empty;
mayhap for thousands of cen¬ it is nothing. It is the ghost of a
turies; or you can strike out to¬ ghost. The Earth is big; more
ward the Outside, battle the than big enough for us. After
power of the Almighty, and be more than seventy thousand
shattered as completely as you, years but a small fraction of it
Napoleon, at Waterloo; or, finally has ever been inhabited, or even
you can take your mighty science explored. We can inhabit it for
and restore order in the thousands millions of years without exhaust¬
of hells that war and the cruelty ing ever new places to abide. But,
and savagery of man have cre¬ if we allow the process of repro¬
ated in the past hundreds of years duction to go on interminably
since last we of the Brotherhood at its ever multiplying pace, even
restored peace. the huge Earth will become
“Which will it b,e?” crowded. That is what we pro¬
Napoleon sat for a moment pose to do; destroy the Tree of
silently on his throne, then he Life so that we can stabilize the
spoke. “You speak of us as infer¬ present population. Once we have
iors,” he said, “and yet you admit done that, then we will have all
that we have attained to a science the time we need to perform the
hitherto unknown except on the task you say we are capable of
Outside. Doesn’t that make us doing. It is true that we are
equals? Does it make sense that capable of it—but you assume
you assume we will be beaten in that we will not do it! You are
a struggle between us?” wrong. When we have achieved
“Perhaps not; if we met you the first and most important goal,
THE HIDDEN KINGDOM 31

the stabilization of the Earth’s pop¬ from her throne, leaning forward
ulation, then we shall go into now, her beautiful hair falling
every last corner and restore all over her white breasts. “This man
to sanity, peace, happiness, and who has come with Alcibides—
everlasting enjoyment. if he is what I think, then perhaps
“Where is there a Paradise the Brotherhood is already aware
which cannot be duplicated of our plans.”
right here on the Earth? Where Napoleon looked at me curi¬
is there more space than we have ously. “What do you think he is?
here to perform all that we re¬ All I see is a youngster who has
quire? Why should we venture come to us prematurely.”
into a vague unknown, the true “Is he? He recognized me from
nature of which has never been a meeting one night, the night I
proved to us—in fact, may be a was killed in the San Francisco
trap and a snare; an enslavement earthquake, a meeting at which
clever and concealed beyond be¬ Alcibides, in another guise, was
lief? also present. I have not discovered
“I say let the Brotherhood mind which of that group he was, but
their own business! Let them stay if he was one of them, then he is
Outside. We don’t want them here. not what you see, a youngster who
But if they do come, then I promise has come here prematurely.”
you more than a comet will strike “Ask him,” said Napoleon.
them!” Angela looked at me. “There
For a long moment there was is something vaguely familiar
silence, then Alcibides sighed. “I about you, but I can’t remember.
knew in advance what you would Why do I have this feeling? Who
say, yet my heart would not let me are you—or who were you?”
be still. I had to present my case I looked at Alcibides, and he
to try to dissuade you from the smiled. “Tell her,” he said. “Don’t
great crime of cutting off the distress the young lady further.
river of Life.” Too much anxiety may make
“And I have listened,” said Na¬ ugly lines on her lovely face.”
poleon. “Go now in peace to your I looked . at Angela, then
quarters which I have provided shrugged. “I was not where you
for you. I cannot allow you to could see me, that night. I was on
leave the city, for by your own the landing of the stairway, peer¬
admission the Brotherhood will ing down while you discussed what
not come to Earth for some time I called magic, watching while
yet, and I do not propose that Alcibides turned out the lights.
those plans be changed. When I was only a boy of seven .. .”
they do come, it will be too late.” Angela leaped to her feet, and
“One moment,” spoke Angela in that instant I had to admit
32 MYSTIC

that she was uncommonly beauti¬ in shape, and surrounded by a


ful. There was relief and relaxa¬ brilliant bluish light. There was
tion on her face now, and intense an open port in the side, and in
interest and wonderment. “John!” the port stood Alcibides and sev¬
she exclaimed. “John Arnold! eral other men equally as hand¬
You’re John Arnold’s son!” some and majestic as he now
“He was my father,” I said. seemed.
“My name is Robert Arnold.” . Alcibides waved to me, and in
Suddenly she was pale, and my mind I heard his voice: “My
she sat down again. “I killed you,” message did get through. My
she said. “I thought you were one friends have come for me. Good¬
of the Outsiders. I would not have bye, and trust in Angela; her
brought you here if I handn’t heart is good.”
made such a terrible error. . .” Then his voice became audible
Napoleon looked at her with a to us all, and he spoke first to
slight frown. “Let’s not get emo¬ Estaban. “You see, Estaban, even
tional about it. He would have though your roadways are guard¬
died in a few years anyhow. And ed impregnably, there are ways
if he hadn’t, we’d have killed him th& ships of the Brotherhood may
when we came. What does it mat¬ travel that you cannot guard. And
ter whether he joins us now or you, Napoleon—there is yet time
then?” to change your plans from the
Angela did not answer but con¬ conquest of flesh to the conquest
tinued to stare at my face. She of self. If you go on in your pur¬
was still staring when Estaban pose, remember that the way of
prodded me and motioned me to the conqueror is lonely, and there
the door. is ever the traitor to deal with!”
In that instant the room was The port in the giant golden
filled with a blinding blue light ship closed now, and it shot up,
and there was a crash of tremen¬ straight toward the rocky roof
dous thunder. Napoleon uttered of the cavern, high above. As it
an exclamation and leaped from reached the rocks there was a
his throne. All three of us fol¬ mighty blue flash, a clap of re¬
lowed him as he ran from the sounding thunder, and the ship
room and down the corridor, was gone.
out toward the terrace. I saw now For an instant Napoleon
that Alcibides had left the room looked up with a black frown on
when Napoleon had bidden him. his face, then he turned and
When I arrived on the terrace, I strode off the terrace. For a brief
stopped short. There, hanging a moment Angela hesitated, look¬
few yards away, was the huge ing strangely contrite, then hur¬
golden bulk of a ship, spherical ried after him.
THE HIDDEN KINGDOM 33

“Come” said Estaban hollowly. night here, although I could not


“It seems that your friend from understand it, considering the
Outside has deserted you. It seems lack of a visible sun) Estaban
that he speaks of traitors with came. He had a peculiar expres¬
knowledge, for he is one himself! sion on his face, and somehow
He had no obstacle to taking you it disturbed me.
with him.” “Would you like to go for a
“I’m not so sure,” I skid. “Even little ride?”
Angela admits it was a mistake “Where to?”
to have taken me this far. I don’t “Is that important?”
believe I’m ready for . . . the Out¬ I shrugged. How would I
side!” know? You might be taking me
Estaban looked at me strangely. for a ride to one of those little
Then he nodded. “For orfce I agree hells I’ve heard about, with the
■with you.” intention of dumping me in.”

S EVERAL times during the


next few weeks Angela paid
He laughed queerly. “I might.
But I’m not.”
“In that case, let’s go,” I said.
me a visit. Each time she asked me “I could use a little variety.”
many questions about myself, We boarded one of the little
about my life on the surface of shells and floated away from the
the Earth. And each time she building where I was housed. We
seemed more agitated. The last drifted slowly through the dark
time she came, she wore the dress toward one of the dark tunnels
I had first seen her wear. in the cavern wall outside the city.
I asked her about it. “Why do As we passed within it, I felt a
you wear the dress now?” qualm of uneasiness, but dis¬
She looked at- me seriously. “It missed it. Even if the trip boded
helps me to think. Do you like me ill for me, there was little I could
better without it?” do about it
“Does a woman of your ex¬ A short time later we came
perience need an answer to that out into the smaller cavern where
question?” I demanded, and my the spaceship that had brought
face was red. me to this strange world lay at
Strangely, her face remained rest. We floated more rapidly now
serious, and now a tear gathered toward it, and Estaban jumped
in her eye. Abruptly she turned to the ground, his actions sudden¬
and ran. Strangely shaken, I ly more hurried and anxious.
turned and resumed my study of “Into the ship!” he ordered.
the city from the window of my “Quickly!”
high quarters. I obeyed, and as I stepped in¬
That night (for there was side, I stopped short. “Angela!”
MYSTIC

I exclaimed. plicate of the original body can be


“No questions now, Robert” formed. That is what we will do
she said. “Just stay out of the to you. Then we will return you
way until we get out of here. to the spot where we found you.”
Sit sorrjewhere.” “Why are you doing this? You
I watched Estaban close the will have to answer to Napoleon,
entrance port behind us, then fol¬ and I’m afraid that won’t be an
lowed him into the control room easy thing for you to do.”
where Angela was seating her¬ She faced me defiantly. “I’ll
self in the pilot’s chair. I sat down take care of that. It was by my
as she had directed, and looked at hand that you came here. I don’t
her as she made swift manipula¬ feel that I want that responsibil¬
tions of the levers on the control ity, so I am going to take you
board. Meanwhile Estaban stood back. You will benefit by it, be¬
against the wall, looking at both cause I’ll do certain things that
of us by turns. His face was enig¬ will repay you for the inconven¬
matic. ience you have been put through.
Finally I felt the ship move, For instance you won’t feel or
gather speed, and I felt a sinking look a day over thirty-five.”
sensation. We were going down, “Aren’t you a little . . . old . . .
and swiftly! for your conscience to begin hurt¬
Angela turned from the con¬ ing you now?” I said, and was
trols and faced me. Her face was sorry instantly that I had said
pale, but determined. it.
“Where are we going?” I asked. “It’s not my conscience!” she
“I’m taking you back,” she said. flared.
“Back!” I said, astounded. “How “Then what is it?”
can you do that?” She looked at me, her face pale,
“Nothing difficult about it. then she turned back to her con¬
We will merely submit you to trols and I saw her neck grow
the process we used when we first slowly pink.
captured you, and - the process I looked at Estaban, caught
we intend to use when we take his intent gaze upon her, a
over the surface plane so that we strange look of realization in
may live there.” his eyes. As his eyes turned to
“How do you do that?” mine, I wonder what it was he
It’s too complicated to explain. had realized, and what he would
But we take elements from the do about it.
atmosphere and condense them. Nothing more was said until
Your spiritual body is a matrix the ship landed at last in bright
for your flesh body, and given moonlight before my cabin in the
the proper elements, an exact du¬ mountains, which remained ex-
THE HIDDEN KINGDOM 35

actly as I had left it what seemed He laughed at her. “I’m closing


ages ago. Angela cut off the mo¬ the port. I’m leaving you here.”
tors of the ship and led the way “Leaving me here! You can’t.
to the door. As she opened it and Napoleon...”
stood in the moonlight, lovely as “. . . knows all about it,” fin¬
I had never seen her before, I ished Estaban. “He’s not the man
paused. to make mistakes, and he is fol¬
“You haven’t done anything to lowing Alcibides’ advice—and by
restore me,” I said. this time he ought to have had
“Yes I have. It was all auto¬ experience enough to be able to
matically done as we descended detect the potential traitor in his
in the ship. You, and I, and Esta- camp! When a woman falls for
ban are all as solid .and fleshly as one of the enemy, she’s no longer
any human ever was. When we to be trusted!”
leave, you will remain so, and The port clanged shut and An¬
Estabap, and I will shed our cor¬ gela stood as though frozen, her
poreality as we return to Aoasu.” nude body a white statue in the
She stepped from the ship, moonlight. Then slowly, the ship
reached up and took my hand. I rose from the ground and gath¬
felt her cool fingers in mine, and ered speed into the night. I
suddenly gripped them tightly as walked slowly over beside Angela
I descended from the ship and and looked upward with her until
stood beside her. She looked at the ship vanished among the
me, then up at Estaban, standing stars. When I looked down it was
in the port behind us. Then she me she was looking at. And she
led me toward the cabin, paused was smiling.
in the shadow of the wall. She I gasped. “What’s the big joke?”
stood there, staring up into my “I’m not a's good at it as Alci¬
eyes. bides, but he isn’t the only one
Then, before I realized her in¬ who can read hearts. And even
tent, she threw her arms around Napoleon has a heart!”
my neck and kissed me fiercely. “You mean you planned all this
I clutched her to me and returned deliberately ... to be left here
her kiss, and for a long instant with me?” I asked wonderingly.
she clung to me. Then she sobbed For answer she put her arms
and tore herself away. She ran around my neck and snuggled
toward the saucer-ship, but the close to me. As she pressed her
voice of Estaban halted her. body against mine I became aware
“Stop!” he said warningly. “Or that she was not the only one
I’ll have to paralyze you.” who was nude. At my start, she
She stopped, dazed. “Estaban!” laughed coyly, and I realized she
she gasped. “What are you doing?” had sensed my thought.
36 MYSTIC

“I couldn’t reconstitute your “And Napoleon’s too, I’ll bet!”


clothing. It wasn’t a part of your I said. “And do you know, Angela,
matrix. Clothing in the astral I’m getting psychic too. I thought
planes is only a matter of mind, all along that was what you were
and of mental choice. You just intending to do. Maybe by the
hadn’t anything in mind!” time Alcibides and his friends
I looked down at her. “What arrive, he’ll find his task a little
about you? I think you’d better lighter.”
get some clothes in your mind She looked up at the stars. “I
right now—it’s not warm in these hope so,” she said seriously. “But
mountains, and as the night no matter what we do, we can’t
goes on, it’s going to get a lot avert Armageddon. At best, we
colder!” can only hope to make the odds
She looked regretful. “I a little less overwhelming.”
wouldn’t like to be cold—but I’m Suddenly she shivered, and I
afraid the clothing I have in mind drew her close to me.
just isn’t corporeal enough to “They’ve got to listen to us!"
keep me warm. I’ll have to do more I said.
than just imagine my clothing She looked up at me and her
from now on.” lips quivered. “What if they
I studied her, then grinned. don’t!”
“You are going to look pretty I looked down at her and my
terrific in a pair of my old over¬ voice became gruff and sober.
alls. And even more terrific get¬ “Let’s not think about it,” I said.
ting married in them . ..” “The first thing to do is for us to
She clutched her arms around get inside and build a fire before
my neck again and pulled my you catch cold. After all, you’re
lips down to hers. After a mo¬ just a human being now.”
ment she released me. We went into the cabin and I
“And after we’re married, closed the door to the cool night
we’re going to try to warn people air. In the morning we would
of what the flying saucers mean start back for San Francisco—
—and try to teach them how to and the beginning of the Battle
fight back! Just let me get to the of Armageddon.
government; I’ll show them some Pray God we do not lose it!
things that will open their eyes!” The End

THE INVASION OF THE DARK ONES


NEXT ISSUE'S
FEATURE PRESENTATION
SPECIAL OFFER. SEVEN MAGICAL ART TALISMANS AND A LEATHER
CASE WITH EVERY ORDER FOR THIS GREAT BOOK!
I N presenting this sensational story to you, the editors have
tried to dramatize a widespread belie1 in karma and rein¬
carnation as a means of working out out destiny. The illustra¬
tion on the opposite page is a symbolic conception of reincar¬
nation: the primitive nude figure in the foreground being Man
as he first comes into being, the gloriously stylized figure in
the background the ultimate Perfect Man, and the jagged
lines between them the various lifetimes in which that per¬
fection is reached. In order to introduce entertainment value
and novelty, author Rog Phillips, himself a famed mystic,
has laid the scene of his story in the future, when there are
even more scientific marvels than today — for Mr. Phillips
believes science is but the natural working out of karma.

GO VISIT
YOUR G RAVE
A Story of Reincarnation
and the Problems it Brought to Three People

(By (Rog (Phillips


DON’T want my fortune Myers said. “One-way glass in
told,” Bill Myers said. “1 the armrests of my chair, care¬
don’t believe in that bunk.” fully colored to match the rest of
Madame Olga shrewdly studied the chair arm. But underneath it is
the young man sitting across the a scanner that reads fingerprints
table from her. “You come to a and sends the readings to a finger¬
fortune teller, yet you don’t want print bank, probably behind that
your fortune told? Why?” curtain at your back. It identifies
“I know how you do it,” Bill the prints and tells you what you
want to know about your customer customer who he was in his last re¬
through a hearing aid button con¬ incarnation. His ten prints identify
cealed under your gypsy shawl.” him uniquely. You cut it down to
“This is the twenty-first cen¬ eight or six or four or two, until
tury,” Madame Olga said. “We the fingerprint bank can give other
march with the times. But that names. You narrow it until you
doesn’t mean ...” have one other name of a person
Bill Myers shook his head. “It’s who died before the customer was
phony. I even know how you tell a born. The procedure is standard-
4t> MYSTIC

ized with you fortune tellers so that reached for the money. After he
if the customer checks with an¬ had gone she dAsted the bill for
other he will get the same answers. prints and let the scanner read
I know the whole thing.” them. ...
“And therefore you don’t believe
in soul transmigration,” Madame A LFRED CARTER spied Fran-
. cine Ford in a booth near the
Olga said. “But I do. I believe its
story is in the fingerprints of a rear of the cafe. He went back and
person. I’ve learned my own past slipped into the seat beside her.
history, and found confirmation in “Hi, Francy,” he said.
— other things. But you didn’t “We’re both early,” she- said.
come here to let me convince you. “I came early in the hopes I
Why did you come?” would get a minute or two with
“I want you to help me play a you before Bill came,” A1 said.
trick on a friend of mine, Madame “Why did you come early? For
Olga. And I want you to pass the the same reason?”
word along to your fellow seers —r- “You ask because you hope it’s
just in case he decides to check up. so,” Francine Ford said, smiling.
There’s fifty dollars in it for you.” Then she frowned in concentra¬
Madame Olga hesitated, looked tion and seriousness. “We’ve been
at him strangely. “What do you brought up to psychoanalyze our¬
want me to do?” selves and others continually — to
“His name is Alfred Carter. I’ll trap our unconscious desires and
be with him when he comes in. motivations out into the open —
Maybe somebody else too. But and be skillful enough when we
you’ll identify him from his prints. want to conceal our motives from
What I want you to do is tell him others to do so. I’ll be entirely
he’s the reincarnation of someone frank with you on one thing, Al. I
who died right here in Los Angeles believe I could marry either you
and is buried in a grave at a ceme¬ or Bill tomorrow and be quite sure
tery here so he can go see his own of a successful marriage. And that’s
grave!” the trouble. I could, but neither of
“I see. Do you have anyone par¬ you could—until you’ve finished
ticular in mind?” your competition and one of you
“N-no one in particular,” Bill has won me decisively.”
Myers said. “I want to make it Carter nodded. “And the loser
good though. Could you make it a knows he has lost because oi his
convicted murderer?” He took out own iaults. I believe you’re right,
his billfold, extracted a fifty-dollar Francy. Come to think of it, I
bill, watching Madame Olga’s re¬ would be disappointed in you
actions. somehow if' you suddenly chose
Although aware of his stare, she either of us out of a clear sky, but
GO VISIT YOUR GRAVE 41

it never pointed itself up con¬ a Mexican dinner.”


sciously that way to me before.” “I’d like that,” Francy said. “Al,
“And I think you’re right about why don’t you ever get an original
Bill’s motive for getting us together idea?”
today,” Francine said. She shivered “You know,” Al said, “I like the
in delight. “I’m going to enjoy my¬ idea of the fortune teller. I’ve al¬
self — I hope. Now why did I add ways wanted to go to one just to
that qualification?” see what it’s like. An aunt of mine
She had no time to answer her went to one once, and according to
own question. Bill Myers had ar¬ Aunt Bessie the fortune teller knew
rived. “Hello, Francy. Hello, Al,” he her name and all about her without
said. “Been here long? Ordered asking a single question.”
yet?” “But you wouldn’t fall for that
“No,” Al said to both questions. stuff,” Bill said.
Bill said, “Then let’s wait to eat “I don’t know,” Al said. He saw
I ran across a part of the city I’m Bill’s incredulous look. “No, no. I’m
sure you’ve never seen before. I serious. There’s a lot we don’t know
hadn’t. Mostly Mexican and Gypsy even yet about the mind. It would
and stuff like that I thought the take other confirmation to—”
three of us could have fun. All “Okay,” Bill said, “we’ll take you
kinds of shops and dives with Mex¬ to a fortune teller while we’re
ican food and drinks, fortune tell¬ there, only let’s get going so we can
ers, and ' sidewalk artists who see most of it before dark.”
draw your portrait for fifty cents. Francy and Al smiled at each
One of the few places left that’s other. Bill had gained his point
just like it was in the twentieth with supreme skill- and they both
century. Especially the fortune recognized that fact. They also
tellers.” knew that some plan was obsessing
Al grinned. “And cafes that serve his motivation pattern.
chili warmed over from the last
century, too—but, okay by me.
How about you, Francy?” He
T HEY ate a Mexican dinner,
and saw all the sights except
smiled at her, knowing she remem¬ fortune tellers. Bill quite skillfully
bered what he had said about play¬ managed the dead-end pause in
ing along. their sightseeing across the street
She was looking searchingly at from Madame Olga’s and com¬
Bill. “Fortune tellers?” mented with a superior sneer di¬
“Oh sure. They have lots of rected at Al, “That seems to be all
business down there. Some of those — except the fortune teller. That
people actually believe in that sign over there says two bucks a
stuff. Must be one in every block. fortune. Ain’t worth it.”
I thought it would be nice to have “Oh, I don’t know,” Al said slyly.
42 MYSTIC

“I’ll pay the two bucks for Francy’s 2031, which makes you twenty-
fortune.” four years old on your last birth¬
Bill concealed his triumph un¬ day, September eighth. You are a
derneath a scowl of protest. “That car salesman, fairly successful, and
isn’t what I meant. I’ll pay for all are in love with a young lady
our fortunes if you’re determined whom you’re not sure of. There are
to go through with this nonsense. dark clouds in the crystal ball, sig¬
You must believe in the stuff.” nifying trouble connected with this
“You’re the one who seems young lady . . . perhaps tragedy?
afraid of it,” A1 said. .. . that lies in the past.” She look¬
“Stop it!” Francine Ford said. ed up at Al questioningly. He
“We’ll go in. But I don’t want to shook his head. She looked down
be first.” at the crystal ball again, frowning..
“We’ll see what hogwash this “Yes. It’s in the past and also the
Madame Olga hands out to Al,” future. To get the meaning of the
Bill said. future we must go deeper into the
They went across the street and past, to previous incarnations, for in
entered the feebly lit waiting room. this way we can understand your
A bell somewhere tinkled musical¬ karma.” She fumbled under her
ly. Curtains parted, and a voice in¬ shawl and appeared to meditate.
toned, “Please enter.” Suddenly her expression was trans¬
Madame Olga sat behind her formed with surprise. Al, watching
table, an eight-inch crystal ball be¬ her very intently, felt sure the sur¬
fore her, an astrological chart on prise was genuine. Bill felt instant
the wall behind her. The “custom¬ admiration of her acting ability.
er’s chair” faced her directly, too “This is very unfortunate,” Mad¬
heavy to be moved easily. ame Olga said. “I don’t like to give
“Sit down, please,” she said, unhappy readings.”
pointing to the chair, “and place “Go ahead,” Al said. He licked
two dollars in the golden tray.” his lips.
Al looked questioningly at Fran¬ “Very well. I see a man. He is
cine, then boldly sat down. The you, Alfred Marvin Carter, but in
chair was designed in such a way your last incarnation. I can see his
that it was natural to place his death. He is in a room devoid of
hands in the proper position with¬ furniture, in a chair not built for
out doing so consciously. comfort. There are straps around
Madame Olga, seeing his hands him. He looks at a window through
placed where the scanner could which faces are staring. Pale, seri¬
read his fingerprints, concentrated ous faces. He breathes deeply. Sud¬
on her crystal ball. “You are Alfred denly his head droops limply. He
Marvin Carter,” she said. “You is dead. This was on October four¬
were born in Billings, Montana in teenth, of the year 2029. And his
GO VISIT YOUR GRAVE 43

name was Philip Strong. Now I see you, William Myers?”


someone signing some papers to “No! It’s a lot of nonsense. We
claim Philip Strong’s body. I see weren’t those people.”
a funeral, with few people attend¬ “Who was the woman?” Francy
ing. I see Philip Strong lowered said, her voice sounding strange.
into a grave, and it is in this city, “Sit down, my dear,” Madame
at New Forest Lawn Cemetery.” Olga said, suddenly gentle.
Madame Olga appeared exhausted Without taking her eyes from
as she stopped talking. the fortune teller, Francine sat
“You mean I murdered someone down, unconsciously sitting erect,
and died in the gas chamber?” A1 her hands almost flat in the proper
said, horrified. position for the scanner to read her
“Don’t believe her,” Bill said. fingerprints.
“She made it up.” But without any pretense of
Madame Olga fixed him with a looking into the crystal ball, Mad¬
wise smile. “You think so?” she ame Olga spoke. “You are Francine
said as though there were hidden Martha Ford, born in Tucson,
meaning behind her words. “Are Arizona in 2033. Your mother died
you afraid for me to read your for¬ when you were four years old, your
tune? Perhaps it will be equally as father five years later. You were
interesting, William Myers.” raised by an aunt and uncle, and
“How did you learn my name?” given the best of educational up¬
Bill said, startled. “No, I don’t want bringing. In spite of that, there are
my fortune told. I’m not interest¬ many things you can’t understand
ed.” But he knew by Al’s and Fran- about yourself. You think they
cine’s taunting expressions that he must be due to, still buried factors
would have to give in. He took Al’s of your earlier life, but you are
place, but purposefully kept his wrong. They are part of your kar¬
hands off the chair arms. ma from past lives — a karma that,
Madame Olga looked into her by the strange workings of Fate,
crystal ball for several seconds has brought you three together.
without speaking. “It is as I “Yes, you were that murdered
thought,” she said at last. “In your woman. You were Mable Farmer.
past incarnation you were with Your grave too lies in New For¬
Philip Strong, and your name was est Lawn. Three graves, within
Harold Wilson. Karma is a strange sight of one another. A helpless vic¬
and wonderful thing. You, Philip tim of murder, an innocent man
Strong, were executed for a murder sent to the gas chamber for that
you did not commit. Harold Wil¬ murder, and the murderer himself,
son, now William Myers, killed who died by his own hand.” Mad¬
the woman and planted evidence ame Olga laughed, and it was the
to place the blame on you. Didn’t sound of cold whispering winds in
MYSTIC

uninhabited places. could lay your hands on the arms


“You are quite — unusual, Mad¬ of the chair, Bill. It puzzles me.
ame Olga,” Francine said. “I’ve nev¬ Either she knows things by some
er met anyone quite like you. May occult power, or— You didn’t ar¬
1 come back again sometime?” She range this whole thing as a show
rose from the chair and half turned to entertain us, did you. Bill?”
toward the exit, her eyes still look¬ Bill’s face turned beet red. Then
ing questioningly at the fortune he exploded into a laugh. “I sup¬
teller. pose I may as well confess,” he
“Yes, you may come back, said. “I did. All’s fair, you know,
Mable Farmer. But first, go visit Al. Only—” he made a wry face,
your grave. Or are you afraid it “—that unreconstructed maniac in
will bring back memories?” there must have a hellish sense of
“Yes, you are very strange,” humor. My little scheme backfired
Francine said. “I think perhaps I on me. Let’s forget it, huh?”
might come back at that.” She gave “Then she did use fingerprints,”
Madame Olga a goodbye smile and Al said. “She must have gotten
went out, A1 and Bill following her. yours off the money you paid her

O N the sidewalk Bill wiped his


forehead with the edge of his
ahead of time.”
“Of course she used finger¬
prints!” Bill said. “I didn’t think
finger and said, “Whew! What a you would know about that.”
sadistic creature she turned out to “I don’t believe she used mine,”
be!” Francy said quietly. “But we can
“Maybe not,” A1 said. He winked find out from the fingerprint bank
at Francine. “What if she was tell¬ at the Hall of Science. Let’s go
ing the truth? I was reading a over there now and find out. The
very interesting book not long ago evening is young.”
which advanced the theory that “Why bother?” Bill said. “I told
the fingerprints carry the record Madame Olga to tell Al he was
of past incarnations. It did a pretty a convicted murderer. She follow¬
good job of backing it up with ed that much of my instructions,
proof, though that could have been anyway. I thought it would be en¬
faked, of course. In there when lightening to see how he would
she told me about myself I was react.”
sure there must be a scanner built “I’m reacting, Bill,” Al said.
into that chair and a fingerprint “Francy and I are going to the Hall
bank behind the curtain at her of Science. Coming with us?”
back, with a hearing button con¬ “And if we find she told the
cealed under her shawl. That idea truth,” Francy said lightly, “we can
was exploded, of course, when she visit our graves in the moonlight.
told you about yourself before you It will be moonlight until after
GO VISIT YOUR GRAVE 45

midnight, tonight Full moon . . .” ing the data about him that Mad¬
“Awrrrh!” Bill growled, defeated ame Olga had given, in almost the
and a little angry. same words.

T HE fingerprint booth in the


Hall of Science was impres¬
A1 grinned at Bill. “No wonder
Madame Olga jumped with sur¬
prise. You had asked her to tell me
sive. Charts explained the princi¬ I was the reincarnation of a con¬
ples of fingerprint classification, victed murderer, and her machine
and a plastic model showed the told her I really was.”
construction of the machine that “Coincidence,” Bill said. “It
picked up and stored fingerprints. won’t include Mable Farmer in
The brain in which the billions of Francy’s identification.”
items were stored was, of course, But it did. And both A1 and
the standard colloid gell unit cre¬ Francy looked at Bill, their faces a
ated by du Pont in 1979. The clos¬ trifle pale.
est thing to duplicating the human “What do you want me to do?”
brain yet devised, but still a long Bill shot at them. But he knew
way from actual ego-integration. there was no way out. He went
It used the two gallon brain, which through the routine. The speaker
was the largest. Most servos used finally came to what, from his ex¬
the pint size which could absorb pression, Bill dreaded it would say.
and keep straight quite a few mil¬ “Harold Prescott Wilson, 2005-30,”
lion items in motor-sensory asso¬ with several seconds of swift rou¬
ciation. tine history, then, “Cause of death,
The card over the scanner plate suicide.”
read, “Please place all fingertips But what hung in their ears
firmly against plate for accurate after the speaker became silent,
identification. This fingerprint and kept their eyes opened wide in
bank contains the fingerprints of surprise, was an almost insignifi¬
every living person, and is kept up cant factual item just before the
to date. It will identify you and cause of death. It was, “Married
give whatever information about Olga Paula Bancroft October 7,
you it contains. Should any of this 2029.”
information be inaccurate, please “Madame Olga!” Francy whis¬
notify the government on Info pered. “Then — she’s your wife.
Form 162 AAA.” And there was a Bill!” Francy nodded her head
stack of blank 162AAA’s on a table. slowly. “All of these years she has
“I’ll try it first,” A1 said. He lived, and today you walked in and
placed all his fingers flat against gave her money to play a trick on
the scanner plate. At once a pleas¬ someone. She brought out your
ant voice spoke from a small speak¬ prints on the bill and identified
er, telling him who he was, and giv¬ you — and then she knew you were
46 MYSTIC

the reincarnation of her husband, lost sight of the fact that we’re a
who had killed himself. Why? Was royal flush. Inevitable, when you
it remorse at having killed me and consider all the, possible groups of
framed A1 for it? It must have three or four people. But supersti¬
been. Why did you kill me?” tions are built on things like this.
Bill’s lips worked, but no sound “How did it begin? Bill loves
came out. Francine and wants to win her, but
“This is getting us all worked I’m his rival. Francine is obviously
up,” A1 said. “Let’s calm down a waiting for one of us to show some
bit. Let’s go someplace where we admirable or the opposite quality
can get a drink and relax and think so that she can definitely make up
this thing out.” her mind and be satisfied she’s

F IFTEEN minutes later they


were in a booth in a cocktail
chosen the right partner in life. Bill
consciously reasons that all people
are somewhat superstitious, and if
lounge, with Martinis in front of he can get me into a situation
them. where my superstition crops out,
“Now,” A1 said. “What do we Francine will turn away from me
have to go on? We have what to him. He thinks he will be secure
seems to be incontrovertible proof in the situation, because he staged
that we three are drawn together it. It didn’t work out that way. We
through what the occultists call could get involved in an irrational
karma. A certain theory about fin¬ scene, have something happen that
gerprints, when applied to us, tells knocked Bill off, and Francine and
us that in a previous existence Bill I get married feeling that karma
murdered Francine and framed me had worked it out that way. But I
for it, then killed himself a year won’t have any of that. Francine,
later. And all that right here in if you fall into that trap I won’t
L.A. After dying, we were reborn in marry you.”
such places as Montana and Ari¬ “It seems to me,” Bill said quiet¬
zona and Illinois. But Olga Ban¬ ly, “that we’re already in that trap.
croft didn’t die, and continued to We can rationalize it away, but the
live here, so she was here when we room for doubt still continues to
arrived at our meeting place. exist. It’s already in the process of
“But is that true — or is it just being shoved into the unconscious
according to a theory? Coincidence in Al. He’s planting directives with
has a longer arm than most people it.” Bill made a wry face. “Maybe
think. If you sit down in a game Francine has already discarded me
of poker and get a royal flush dealt as a possible husband on the
to you, you realize it’s coincidence. grounds that I’m ‘married’ to Mad¬
Our trouble here is that we’re ame Olga.”
wrapped up emotionally, and have “Nonsense!” Francine said, but
GO VISIT YOUR GRAVE 47

her face flamed red, giving the lie Al, wielding the flashlight, mere¬
to her words. She calmed herself ly chuckled. “We should have col¬
and went on quietly, “You are in lected Madame Olga,” he said.
the trap, Bill. If I reject you, you “Then we could have a showdown
will believe it is for that reason, all the way around, tonight.”
when it will be because you used “Why don’t we go get her?”
unethical methods to gain an ad¬ Francy said, pausing.
vantage over Al.” “Why should we?” Bill grum¬
“And I used an unethical ad¬ bled.
vantage myself,” Al said. “I pointed “That’s right, why should we?”
it out to you behind his back. We’re Al said. “If our destiny’s in the
all in the trap. How are we going stars, and this is a rendezvous with
to get out of it?” Destiny, she will be here.” He made
“We could go our separate ways it sound like handwriting on the
and forget about it,” Francine said, wall.
her eyes bleak. Francine gasped and looked
Al smiled gently. “That violates ahead into the darkness as though
the first principle of psychology. It more than half expecting to see the
would warp each of us for the rest shawled figure of the fortune teller.
of our lives. We have to resolve Even Bill caught himself peering,
this situation completely or we’re and turned his head away with a
sunk, and we all know it.” short breath of exasperation.
“But how?” Bill asked. The very They went on in silence, the
desperateness of his voice showed flashlight an evil eye showing them
how firmly it had gripped him. the way ahead, until they reached
“First,” Al said, a mirthless smile the turn.
on his lips, “the cemetery. We’re “Five tombstones north,” Al said.
going to walk right into the teeth The flashlight counted them and
of — our insanity.” settled on the fifth; They went

T HE nightwatchman became
cooperative for five dollars.
slowly toward it until they could
read the words on it. The name:
HAROLD PRESCOTT WILSON.
He located the three graves in a “Here’s where your body lies,
directory and loaned them a flash¬ Bill,” Al said.
light, keeping his curiosity to him¬ “What do you mean — my
self. body?” Bill said angrily. “It’s a lot
“It’s spooky,” was Francine’s of crazy nonsense!”
diagnosis of the full moon and the “Is it?” Al said. “Methinks thou
graveyard. protesteth too much. I wonder
“What will this accomplish?” Bill what thoughts went through your
grumbled, his anger still gnawing head just before you killed your¬
at him. self. The futility of having mur-
48 MYSTIC

dered Francy, and framing me for “Are you sure?” Al said. “A part
it?” of your mind must have been
“Stop it, Al!” Francy said sharp¬ aware of leaving fingerprints on
ly. “That isn’t fair!” that money you gave Madame
“But it is,” Al said, “and you’ll Olga. It hid it from you, trapped
see it before the night’s over.” you. Why? If your whole being had
Before the night’s over! The wanted success you wouldn’t have
thought hung suspended above the made any mistakes.”
tombstone darkness, a deeper “The fundamental law of psy¬
shadow than all the rest. chology,” Bill admitted.
“Try and remember. Bill,” Al “And true,” Al said. “One of the
said patiently. “Surely you can re¬ surest ways of trapping your sub¬
member . . . dying?” conscious out into the open is to
“Damn you, Al!” Bill said. analyze your mistakes, your pat¬
“Stop it!” Francy said, “or I’ll tern of forgetting.” They had been
march out of here and refuse to moving slowly forward. “Ah. Here’s
speak to either of you again!” my grave,” Al said.
Both men relaxed a little. The stone was a cheap marker
“I think my grave is next,” Al with the name, PHILIP STRONG,
said. “Shall we go see it?” on it
“This is crazy,” Bill said. “Our “I wonder,” Al said, “if I knew
even being here is crazy.” the truth when I died in the gas
“Is it?” Al said thinly. “It was chamber for a crime I didn’t com¬
your idea. Remember? Only, in the mit? Did I know you had framed
original version of your farce you me? I could have known and been
were to be securely perched in the unable to do anything about it.
knowledge that it was all a fake, The law had convicted me. Only
and I was to be cringing before the I — and you — knew that the evi¬
Great Unknown. I wonder from dence was framed. I wonder if I
what region of your unconscious died — bitter? Or did I believe
the formative causes of that idea that somewhere, somehow, in a
came?” brighter better world, the wrong
“I know where I got the idea,” would be righted? That’s karma
Bill said. “I read a magazine ex¬ you know.”
pose of fortune tellers and got the Francine spoke. “Shall we visit
idea from that.” my grave?” she asked. “I think it’s
Al directed the flashlight along time. My watch says one minute to
the row of tombstones absently. midnight. I feel the urge to stand
“And what did you want to do?” on my grave in the moonlight.
“Isn’t it obvious?” Bill snapped. Surely I must have been a witch —
“I wanted to make you look like a to inspire the murder urge ip a
sap so Francy would choose me!” man.”
GO VISIT YOUR GRAVE 49

They continued down the row. husband returns to her from the
The tombstone was an ornate one grave after all these years and she
with little cherubs on it. The name treats him like that?”
was there. MABLE FARMER. “Isn’t it natural?” Al said. “He
Francine stood in front of the was a murderer twice over, having
stone, looking at it, obviously con¬ framed Philip Strong.”
scious of standing directly above “Suppose Philip Strong actually
the body six feet below. murdered Mable Farmer?” Francy
“I wonder why I was murdered,” said. “No—don’t interrupt. I want
she said softly, as though only to to paint a picture. Suppose Harold
herself. “How awful it must have Wilson (Bill) loved Mable Farm¬
been, to die that way. Was I shot, er, and Philip Strong (Al) killed
or strangled in a fit of rage? Was her. That would make the picture
I someone who deserved being somewhat different Harold, over¬
murdered? Or was I an innocent, in come by grief, marries Olga who is
someone’s way?” She nodded to in love with him. But he doesn’t
herself. “Yes, we should have get over loving Mable. Maybe he
brought Madame Olga. She must comes to believe if he had done
know the truth.” She turned slowly things differently Mable wouldn’t
and faced Bill and Al. “The truth have been murdered at all. From
about the past, I mean.” that it would be an easy step for
“She’s already told us,” Al said. him to accuse himself of her death
“She told us what she believes,” as he disintegrated mentally to¬
Francy said gently. “But is it neces¬ ward the moment of suicide. Olga,
sarily true? What are the facts? not having his love, would react
Philip Strong was executed for by hating him. She would come to
murdering Mable Farmer. Harold believe in her twisted mind that he
Wilson married Olga Bancroft had killed himself to escape her—
shortly after Philip Strong was con¬ be with his loved one beyond the
victed of that murder. They lived grave. And that pattern fits more
together as man and wife, then accurately to the present pattern."
Harold Wilson killed himself. Did “But it doesn’t!” Al said. “Bill
he tell Olga he murdered Mable, or tried to frame me into the position
did she come to that conclusion he’s now in! Karma works itself
herself? Did he kill himself be¬ out — if you want to believe in
cause of a guilty conscience — or karma. He framed me last time. He
because he was unbalanced by tried it again and this time I turned
some great grief? Let’s analyze it against him.”
Olga’s reactions. Hired by Bill, she “No,” Francine said. “That does¬
turns the tables on him, having n’t fit all the facts. Let’s go back.
identified him with her dead hus¬ You warned me that Bill might
band. Isn’t that significant, that her have some plan to put you in a
50 MYSTIC

disadvantageous light, and told me planned it. You left the magazine
you would play him along and see with Bill. In a dozen subtle ways
what it was. That statement was even you weren’t aware of you
designed to prejudice me in your built up the idea in him to the
favor from the start. 1 recognized point where it emerged into con¬
that and kept it in mind. I even sciousness. When the time was ripe
told you I recognized your motive. your unconscious mind let the right
And after we left Madame Olga’s things come to the surface to trick
you let slip that you had read a Bill. You didn’t make a single er¬
book lately on fingerprints and re¬ ror. Bill did. Why did his uncon¬
incarnation. But it was Bill who scious mind make him leave his
got the idea for showing you up — fingerprints on the money? Be¬
he hoped. He got it from reading cause it didn’t condone trickery
an article. Where did you get the and was determined to expose his
article, Bill?” trickery and make him honest
“A magazine named Fate,” Bill again! Another basic aspect of psy¬
said, puzzled. “I probably still have chology.”
it around the house. In fact I know “Are you sure your thinking isn’t
I do. I kept it.” becoming prejudicial?” Al said
, “But you can’t remember how quietly. “There’s another aspect of
you got the magazine?” Francine this testing. You yourself might be
asked. “That in itself is peculiar. found undesirable — to both of us.”
Did you buy it at some stand? Is “The final reaction, Al,” Fran¬
it a magazine you subscribe to?” cine said, smiling. “A threat reac¬
“No. I’d remember that. I didn’t tion.”
buy it. Somebody must have given “I didn’t mean it that way. Nor
it to me or brought it to my apart¬ did I mean any of this cemetery
ment and left it. Probably that. I stuff to do anything more than
would remember if someone had . . .” Al let his voice drift off,
given it to me. It’s a magazine I’d frowning.
never read before.” “Bring our hidden unconscious
“You left it there, didn’t you motives into the open — where
Al?” Francine said quietly. they are now,” Francine said. “So
“Not intentionally,” Al said, in the end your total action results
stony-faced. “In fact, it must have in exposing your falsehoods to
slipped out of my pocket. When I yourself as you’re conditioned to
got home it was gone, and I had do. We all are.”
been several places including “What about the fingerprint evi¬
Bill’s.” dence?” Al said. “You don’t believe
“There are no accidents!” Fran¬ any part of me knew about that!”
cine said sharply. “Don’t you see? “No. It could be chance, like get¬
Deep in your unconscious you ting a royal flush in the first hand
GO VISIT YOUR GRAVE 51

you play in poker. Or reincarnation with you. We 11 be along soon.”


could be a reality. But it really “Thanks,” Al said, low-voiced.
doesn’t matter, does it? Whatever Then he turned and strode into the
is the truth there, should we let it darkness. He carried the flashlight,
dominate our lives any more than but didn’t use it.
the theory that atmosphere is com¬ Bill and Francine watched him
posed of molecules? Or perhaps it disappear into the darkness, drawn
does affect me, to this extent — I’m together by their common bond of
convinced Harold Wilson loved feeling sorry for him.
Mable Farmer. In the years to Then they were alone under¬
come, if I think about reincarna¬ neath the moon, the silence of the
tion at all, I will think of that. If dead building a wall, off in the
I am Mable, and Bill is Harold, darkness. Two marble cherubs
our love survived death, to liye smiled at them in the ghostly light
again. Is that romanticism? Then from Mable’s tombstone, and Fran¬
this isn’t: Bill isn’t too good at cine, holding out her hand in in¬
deceit on the unconscious levels vitation, said, “Won’t you stand
that determine whether marriage upon my grave, my lover?”
will succeed or not. I’ll be able to A tender smile quirking his lips,
figure him out, usually. With you, Bill reached for her hand, enclosed
Al, I would always be wondering, his strong fingers around it — and
never sure. Goodbye, Al.” Francine abruptly pulled her to him, em¬
held out her hand spontaneously. bracing her with loving roughness.
“And good luck. Take the flashlight “Never, my darling,” he said.

Sditonally Speaking
(Concluded from page 5) ,

brotherhood of evil; of the battle asks you to accept what is beyond


between the dark and the light, the reason, beyond knowledge. If you
good and the bad, the living and do, you will be greatly rewarded
the dead! by the thinking that such recogni¬
Fiction, all of it—and yet . . . tion will cause you to do. If you do
woven into the thread of thrills and not, you will certainly have the
chills, laughter and tears, excite¬ reading adventure of your life.
ment and adventure, mystery and MYSTIC Magazine is your
yet more mystery, you may find magazine, and it aims to please
something significant, something you. Let us know how we succeed!
profound, something that is recog¬ —Ray Palmer
nized by that strange sense that
cTrue MYSTIC J^dventures

By Orfeo Matthew Angektd


(As told to Paul M. Vest)

I TRAVELED IN A
FLYING SAUCER
Here is the story of a California airport
worker, whose experience is one of the
strangest we’ve heard regarding the saucers.

Ever since Kenneth Arnold first brought the flying saucers to the na¬
tion’s headlines, we have heard stories that have startled us with their
unusual nature. We all know how the armed forces have investigated,
how they have first claimed there was truth in some of the reports, and
then claimed there was none—until we have grown dizzy trying to keep
up with their changes of opinion. Because of this strange policy, the gen¬
eral public has been divided into two groups—the group which scoffs at
the existence of the mysterious disks, and the group that believes they
exist. Of the latter group, there are, again, two divisions—those who be¬
lieve they are interplanetary, and those who believe there is a mystic
explanation. Mr. Angelucci is one who says they fall into both classifica¬
tions—that they are from space, from other worlds, and that they are
also of a mystic nature. We want you-to read his story, as he told it to
Mr. Vest, and judge for yourself as to what is the basis for his experience.
Whatever you think, one thing is sure, Mr. Angelucci has had one of the
strangest mystic adventures we have ever heard recounted. He declares
it to be true.

52
B
54

EFORE my first encounter


MYSTIC

with the saucers less than a


I wonder if you will accept my
story. Can you possibly believe
year ago I considered all of that a humble aircraft worker—a
the newspaper accounts and talk nobody according to all worldly
about those mysterious objects as standards — has actually establish¬
a joke. No one laughed louder than ed communication with the sau¬
I at the “lunatic fringe” who were cers? Can I convince you that a
deluded into believing we had vis¬ human being has traveled in one
itors from another planet. I gave of those strange objects whose
no serious thought to the numerous sightings have mystified men all
reports of strange objects in the over the world since June 24, 1947
skies or the popular idea that they when Ken Arnold sighted nine of
might actually be of extra-terres¬ the discs near Mt. Rainier?
trial origin. I stand to lose absolutely every¬
I am a family man with a wife thing and gain nothing but ridicule
whom I adore, and two sons, Ray¬ for giving out this account; but
mond, 15, and Richard, 12. I was would a man risk everything he
forced to quit school in the 9th holds dear in life to swear to a lie?
grade because of physical ill health, Would he endanger his job; lay
although I had an insatiable hun¬ both his family and himself open to
ger for learning — especially in the public derision and cause his asso¬
field of scientific research. Later, ciates to question his sanity? No. I
when I was stronger and went to tell my story as it happened to me.
work. I took science courses at Many scientists and aeronau¬
night school and continued my tical authorities will declare that
studies and experiments at home. certain of my experiences could not
My present job is in the Plastics be true from the standpoint of pres¬
Department of the Lockheed Air¬ ent scientific and aeronautical
craft Company in Burbank, Cali¬ knowledge. Were one of those same
fornia. My work involves produc¬ men to travel back in time several
tion of radomes, or plastic glass thousand years and fly a Constella¬
housings for the radar units of the tion equipped with radio, radar,
F-94B and F-94C Starfire Air television, etc. over Egypt, the
Force planes. Several of these same learned men of Alexandria would
planes were recently reported to declare that the huge flying ship,
have established radar contact with the television^ radio and other
“unidentified objects” in the skies equipment, as well as the natural
over Japan. Unidentified objects laws which governed their opera¬
to the Air Force, but I know what tion, were all utterly impossible
they are! I HAVE TRAVELED from the standpoint of their scien¬
IN ONE! tific knowledge and hence disbe¬
As I tell you that in all sincerity lieve all reports of the ship.
I TRAVELED IN A FLYING SAUCER 55

My story begins Friday night Drive, but I never seemed to get


May 23, 1952. I was working the any nearer to the thing. I decided
swing shift from 4 P.M. to 12:30 it must be moving at about the
A.M. at the Lockheed Plant. I was same rate of speed I was. I judged
very tired that night and welcomed it to be about 100 yards ahead of
the shrill of the quitting whistle. I me and about 25 feet in diameter,
took my car from the Plant park¬ but it could have been closer and
ing lot and headed southeast on smaller or farther away and much
Victory Boulevard toward home. larger.
As I drove I became increasing¬ As it was almost 1 A.M. there
ly conscious of nervous tension. I was little traffic on the road. Ap¬
sensed a peculiar force of some parently no one else had noticed
kind about me. It was almost like the thing as I saw no cars stopped
being in contact with a mild elec¬ to investigate. I wondered if I
tric current for it gave me an odd would have noticed it above the
prickling sensation in my arms and glare of the headlights if my eyes
legs and even Up into my scalp. had not' been drawn to it.
At Alameda Boulevard I stop¬ I drove across the bridge over
ped for the traffic signal. It was the Los Angeles River with the
then I noticed that my eyes felt object still in view. Just the other
strange and the sounds of the traf- side of this bridge is a rather lone¬
fice were oddly muffled and far¬ ly, deserted stretch of road called
away as though my hearing was af¬ Forest Lawn Drive.
fected. I wondered if I was going The object stopped and hovered
to be sick. over the intersection of the High¬
As I passed the intersection way and Forest Lawn Drive. As I
something drew my eyes slightly approached, it suddenly gained in
upward and I saw a faintly glowing brilliance and its red color grew
reddish object directly ahead. It deeper and more glowing. Also the
was so dim that I had to look twice physical symptoms I had noticed
to be certain it was really there. earlier became more acute. I was
First I thought it must be some aware of an almost painful tingling
type of low-flying aircraft, but I sensation and a numbness in my
soon realized that was impossible arms and legs that again reminded
as the object just hung silently sus¬ me of some sort of an electrical
pended in the air. I rubbed my current.
eyes half fearing something was As I came nearer to the disc it
wrong with my vision. But the veered sharply to the right off the
thing was still there — not sharp highway and began moving slowly
and clearly defined, but fuzzily lu¬ on over Forest Lawn Drive. I turn¬
minous, oval shaped and reddish. ed my car onto Forest Lawn Drive
I continued on out Riverside and followed the object. I was
56 MYSTIC

thinking that the fantastic thing a state of shock* it is impossible for


must be one of the saucers I’d me to give a verbatim account of
thought were only a joke. the conversation which followed.
About a mile down Forest Lawn The invisible speaker obviously
Drive the disc swerved to the right' was endeavoring to choose words
away from the road and hung in which I could understand but even
the sky over an unfenced field so there were many words and
about forty feet below the road phrases which were not clear to me.
level. I drove off the road about I can only make a poor attempt to
thirty feet to the edge of the de¬ tell you the gist of what was said
clivity. From there the glowing as best I can remember. Also,
red disc was directly in front of me there is much that I cannot tell,
and only about thirty feet away. because I feel it will be helpful to
As I stared, it vibrated violently; keep secret what I have informed
then shot off into the sky at a 30 certain officials who deem it “classi¬
or 40 degree angle ,and at very fied” information.
great speed. High in the sky to the I do, however, remember the
west it decelerated abruptly, hung exact first words spoken which
for a moment; then accelerated were, “Don’t be afraid, Orfeo, we
and disappeared like a meteor. are friends!” The the Voice told me
But even as the glowing red orb to get out of my car.
vanished two smaller discs came Mechanically I pushed open the
from it. These discs were a soft car door and got'out. Oddly enough
fluorescent green and shot toward I didn’t feel fear, but I was so weak
me like shooting stars. and shaky that I could scarcely
They streaked down in front of stand. Perhaps I was frightened
my car and hovered about fifteen even beyond fear. I leaned weakly
feet directly in front of me. I against the front fender of my car
judged them to be about 30 inches and stared fascinated at the twin
each in diameter. Hanging silently circular objects hovering about fif¬
in the air like iridescent bubbles, teen feet in front of me.
their green light fluctuated in pul¬ The glowing discs created a soft
sations. illumination, but I could see no
As I gazed at those two eerie person anywhere. I remember
balls of green fire I heard a mascu¬ vaguely that the voice then spoke
line voice—strong, well-modulated again calling me by my full name
and speaking perfect English. The in words of greeting. It further
voice apparently came from be¬ stated that the small green discs
tween the two green discs. were instruments of transmission
Because of the tremendous nerv¬ and reception comparable to noth¬
ous tension I was under at that ing developed on Earth. Then the
moment which amounted almost to voice added that through the discs
I TRAVELED IN A FLYING SAUCER 57

I was in direct communication with that passed in my mind; I seemed


friends from another planet. to be in telepathic communication
There was a pause and I dimly with them, for thoughts, under¬
remember thinking that I was ex¬ standings, and new comprehensions
pected to say something, but I was flashed through my consciousness
stunned into silence. I could only that would have required hours of
stare at those fantastic balls of conversation to transmit. These
green fire and wonder if I had lost things are difficult to put into
my mind. words for my understanding of
Then another incredible phe¬ them was gained primarily through
nomenon began to occur. The twin intuitive perception.
discs were spaced about twelve feet After several moments the two
apart. The area between them be¬ figures faded and the luminous
gan to glow with a soft green light screen vanished. Again the two
which gradually formed itself into discs flamed into brilliant green
a kind of luminous screen as the fire.
discs themselves faded perceptibly. Bathed in cold perspiration and
Within that luminous, three-di¬ trembling violently from sheer
mensional screen there appeared weakness, I was on the point of
images of the heads and shoulders blacking out when I heard the
of two persons, as though in a cine¬ voice again. It was deep and more
ma close-up. One was the image of kindly than ever as it said some¬
a man and the other a woman. I thing about my being understand¬
say man and woman only because ably confused. But it assured me
their outlines and features were I would understand everything
generally similar to men and wo¬ that had happened later on.
men. But those two figures struck The thought flashed through my
me somehow as being the ultimate mind, “Why have they contacted
of human perfection. There was a me — just an aircraft factory work¬
nobility about them; their eyes er—a nobody?”
were larger and much more expres¬ The voice replied, “We see the
sive and they emanated a kind of individual people of Earth as each
radiance that gave me a sense of one really is, Orfeo, and not as per¬
wonder. Strangely enough the pro¬ ceived by the limited senses of
jected images of the two beings man. The people of your planet
appeared to be observing me, for have been under observation by us
they looked directly at me and for centuries, but have only recently
smiled; then their eyes looked been re-surveyed. Every point of
about as though taking in the en¬ progress in your society is regis¬
tire scene. tered with us. We know you as you
I had the feeling as they studied do not know yourselves. Every
me that they knew every thought man, woman and child on Earth is
58 MYSTIC

recorded in our vital statistics by cules received and converted en¬


means of our recording ‘crystal ergy inherent in all the universe.
discs.’ It further explained that the com¬
“From among you we singled out plexities of the apparently simple
three individuals who, from the structure of a disc were so great
standpoint of our higher vibra¬ that to an Earthling a saucer would
tional perception, are best fitted for be considered as having “synthetic
establishing contact. All three are brains,” although each one is to
simple, humble and unknown per¬ a degree under the remote con¬
sons. Of the other two, one is living trol of a Mother Ship. Also, most
in Rome and the other is in India. of the saucers are of a circular
But for our first contact with the shape and vary in size from a few
people of Earth, Orfeo, we have inches to hundreds, of feet in diam¬
chosen you. eter.
“We feel a deep sense of kinship, A disc, the voice continued, is
or brotherhood, toward Earth’s in¬ able not only to relay whatever is
habitants because the evolution of transmitted to it from a Mother
our planet has been along some¬ Ship, but also it receives all visual,
what the same lines as that of auditory and telepathic impres¬
Earth. In you we can look back sions precisely as these come with¬
and see our own world going in the scope of the disc. These im¬
through its ‘growing pains.’ We ask pressions are relayed to the Mother
that you look upon us as older — Ship where they are permanently
much older—brothers!” recorded upon what Earthlings
The voice continued then speak¬ would term “crystal brains.” Thus
ing rather rapidly. It stated that for centuries they had been able
they were well aware that the “fly¬ to record a detailed account of
ing saucers” had been treated hu¬ Earth’s civilization and the evolu¬
morously by most people — as it tion of individual persons.
was meant that they should be. In The voice also stated that in ad¬
this way they wanted the people of dition to the remotely controlled
Earth to become only gradually saucers they also had space ships,
aware of them and accustomed to some of which had been seen by
the idea of space visitors, if only Earthlings. The space ships were
from a humorous standpoint. They of four basic designs — spherical,
wanted us to receive them lightly hemispherical, oblong and torpedo
at first for the sake of our own sta¬ shape. A few were combinations of
bility! these forms.
The voice stated that the discs I distinctly remember the voice
were powered and controlled by making some such statement as
tapping into universal magnetic this, “Interplanetary ships and sau¬
forces; thus their activated mole¬ cers can approximate the speed of
I TRAVELED IN A FLYING SAUCER 59

light types of evolution occasionally ex¬


“Traveling at the speed of light, plore Earth’s dense, heavy, gaseous
Time, as known on Earth, is non¬ atmosphere. All are of kindly in¬
existent; hence in this dimension tent and none will harm man. But
there are rapid means of space these intelligences can read
travel which are beyond the scope thoughts and see emotions! Man
of man’s present understanding, or believes himself civilized, but often
mathematical computations.” his thoughts are barbaric and his
Many of the saucers, the voice emotions lethal. Remember this
stated, were invisible to earthly and do not attempt to capture,
eyes and could only be detected by shoot down or attack any such en¬
radar. Also that any of the saucers tity or, as a warning you may be
could be rendered invisible at any similarly stunned and burned as
time, or could be disintegrated by was Des Verges. Approach all
either explosion or implosion. Thus planetary visitors with friendly,
Earthlings had seen some appar¬ welcoming thoughts!
ently burst in a white flash while As I listened I wondered why
others seemed simply to disappear. these incredible beings hadn’t
I remember wondering about landed several space ships at one
Captain Mantell and several others of our large airports and thus con¬
who believed they had contacted vinced the world simply and quick¬
the saucers. In reply to my thought ly of their reality?
I heard this reply, “Captain Man¬ In answer I heard these words,
tell was not pursuing the planet “Cosmic Law actively prevents one
Venus. He was endeavoring to planet from interfering with the
overtake and capture one of our evolution of any other planet. In
remotely controlled crystal discs. other words, Orfeo, Earth must
His death is deeply regretted but work out its own destiny! We will
it was absolutely unavoidable. do everything in our power to aid
“Several other Earthlings have the people of Earth, but we are
accidentally contacted visitors definitely and greatly limited by
from planets in your own solar sys¬ Cosmic Law. It is because the life
tem. We are not the only extra¬ evolution of Earth is endangered
terrestrials who have visited your now that we have made our re-ap¬
planet! In one instance the man pearance here in your solar system
died in a mental institution, the — the danger is far greater than
true account of his experiences un¬ Earth’s people realize. The ‘enemy*
believed. In another case the prepares in vast numbers and in
Earthling was stunned unconscious secret. Once the rain of fire is un¬
and slightly burned. We wish to leashed upon Earth we will be
tell Earth’s people that visitors powerless, and civilization as you
from other planets and of different know it may perish, as it did once
60 MYSTIC

in the remote past* Bewilderment, incredulity, shock


For a moment the voice was still and downright fear flooded over
and then it said gently, “Among me—sudden panic that I had lost
the countless other worlds in the my mind and gone stark, raving
Cosmos, Orfeo, the children of mad. What I had witnessed, I felt,
Earth are as babes, although many couldn’t have been! It just didn’t
of them believe they are close to make sense in the rational every¬
the ultimates of knowledge. Among day world.
the worlds, solar systems, and gal¬ I raised my numbed hand and it
axies of the heavens are endless was trembling violently. I saw by
types of evolutions, each one utiliz¬ my watch that it was almost two
ing and employing the predomin¬ o’clock in the morning. I climbed
ant elements of its parent planet. shakily into my car and kicked the
Many of these evolutions would be starter. Panic was mounting in me.
utterly incomprehensible and un¬ I twisted the steering wheel, gun¬
believable to Earth’s people. But I ned the engine and made a sharp,
reiterate we who are here now are fast U turn to get back onto the
from a similar type planet and of road. The tires screamed and the
an evolution similar to mankind. car lurched.
As older brothers we will aid I wanted to get home quick—I
Earth’s people insofar as they, wanted to get back to the sane, ra¬
through free-will, will permit us to tional world. I wanted someone to
do so. We are definitely not cosmic assure me that I wasn’t going mad.
‘hot-rod’ curiosities burdened with I drove with only a single
‘space suits’ and equipped with thought in my mind—to get home!
deadly ‘ray’ pistols, as many people When finally I made the turn onto
conceive of possible space visitors. Glendale Boulevard and saw the
We are just friends from a neigh¬ lights of my apartment I breathed
boring world. a heavy sigh of relief — no place
“We’ll contact you again, Orfeo,” had ever looked so good to me be¬
the voice said, “But for now, friend, fore!
it is goodnight.” I left the car in the driveway
With .those words the two shim¬ and ran into the house. My wife
mering green discs faded almost was waiting up, worried and anx¬
out; then I heard a soft, low hum ious because I was so late.
as they flamed brilliantly into She took one look at me. “Orfeo
glowing green fire again and shot — what’s the matter? What’s
up into the sky in the direction the wrong? You’re white as a sheet!”
larger red disc had taken earlier. In I just stood there staring at her
an incredibly short time they too unable to speak.
had vanished, leaving me standing She ran over and grasped my
there alone by my car. hand crying, “Orfeo—you’re sick
I TRAVELED IN A FLYING SAUCER 61

t.. I’m going to call a doctor.” Lawn Drive where I had seen the
I put my arms around her and discs. There in the loose dirt I
drew her to me. I just wanted to found the deep skid marks the tires
feel her close and for the moment of my car had made Friday night.
to try and not think of what I had Seeing those skid marks where
been through. The mind and nerv¬ I had gunned my car in panic to
ous system can stand only so get away from the eerie spot reas¬
much. sured me of the reality of my ex¬
She looked up and pleaded with perience. I was more convinced
me to tell her what had happened. than ever that I had been in con¬
But I could only whisper, “To¬ tact with beings from another
morrow— maybe tomorrow, Mae, world.
I can tell you ...” Monday night I went back to
Finally we got to bed, but it was my swing-shift job at Lockheed. It
almost dawn before I finally drift¬ felt good to be back at work again!
ed into a kind of half sleep. The friendly banter, laughter and
Nearly all day Saturday I spent jokes of my co-workers were just
in bed. The shock of that fantastic what I needed.
experience was so great that I Outside of my family I told no
found it difficult to get back to ac¬ one of that first experience as I
tualities. I kept having the strange knew I would be ridiculed. In fact
feeling that the every-day world I even at home very little was said
knew ^ras a phantom world inhab¬ about the saucers or my experience
ited only by shadows. for the subject upset my wife and
It was not until Sunday that I filled her with apprehension so
could bring myself to tell my wife even the boys refrained from talk¬
what had happened to me. Frank¬ ing much about the saucers.
ly, I wondered if she would think But when I was alone I thought
I had lost my mind. Thus it was long and often about those incredi¬
with a sense of relief I heard her ble beings from that other world.
say, “If you say it happened like The voice had promised, “We’ll
that, Orfeo, I believe you. You’ve contact you again, Orfeo.” Thus I
always told me the truth. But this wondered when they would get in
thing frightens me — and you look¬ touch with me again and how? Had
ed so deathly white when you came they meant soon — or would it be
months or even years? These and
I could only put my arms around hundreds of similar questions clam¬
her as I replied, “I guess it scares ored in my mind.
me too, Mae.” I wondered if I was under con¬
Sunday afternoon I took my stant observation by them. If so,
twelve year old son Richard and then I at first thought that through
drove back to the spot on Forest telepathy I could signal them to
62 MYSTIC

return. One night I went back to man’s-land.


that lonely spot on Forest Lawn As I crossed the vacant lots in
Drive and tried to establish tele¬ the deep shadows of the bridge a
pathic communication. But it was peculiar feeling came over me. In¬
useless! No glowing red disc ap¬ stantly I remembered that sensa¬
peared— only the night and the tion — the tingling in my arms and
empty skies that gave back no legs! I looked nervously overhead
answer. but saw nothing. The feeling be¬
Weeks passed and still no fur¬ came more intense and with it
ther sign from them. Doubts began came the odd dulling of conscious¬
to trouble me. Time dulled the ness I had noted on that other oc¬
memory of that night and I began casion.
to wonder if my experience had ac¬ Between me and the bridge was
tually been real after all. a kind of misty obstruction. I could¬
Then early in July there was a n’t make out what it was. From
fresh flood of well-authenticated where I was standing it looked
reports of sightings of saucers in just like a ghostly Eskimo igloo —
the skies over Southern California. or the phantom of an igloo. For it
Local newspapers carried banner seemed like a luminous shadow
headlines announcing FLYING without substance. I stared hard at
SAUCERS OVER LOS ANGE¬ the object. It was absolutely in¬
LES! Some people were convinced credible— like a huge misty soap
we had interplanetary visitors and bubble squatting on the ground
looked for mass landings at any emitting a fuzzy, pale glow.
moment. The object appeared to be about
July 23, 1952 I didn’t go to 30 feet high and about equally as
work. I wasn’t feeling well and be¬ wide. As I watched it seemed to
lieved I was coming down with the gain substance and to darken per¬
flu. I was in bed all day, but in the ceptibly on the outside. Then I no¬
evening I felt a little better and ticed it had an aperture or entrance
thought a walk in the fresh air like the door to an igloo, and the
would be good for me. inside was brilliantly lighted.
It was a little after ten o’clock. I walked toward the thing. I had
Beyond the Los Feliz theatre is a absolutely no sense of fear; rather
lonely stretch of vacant lots. The a pleasant feeling of well-being
place is eerie and forbidding at possessed me. At the entrance I
night, for huge concrete buttresses could see a large circular room in¬
rise from it supporting the Hyperi¬ side. Hesitating only an instant I
on Avenue Freeway bridge several stepped into the object.
hundred feet overhead. The bridge I found myself in a large, circu¬
casts dense, oblique shadows down lar, domed room about twenty-five
below making it a shadowed no¬ feet in diameter. The interior was
I TRAVELED IN A FLYING SAUCER 63

made of a sort of ethereal mother- deeply and found the air cool and
of-pearl stuff, iridescent with soft, fresh. Vaguely I wondered what
exquisite colors that gave off a soft was going to happen next.
light There was no sign of life — Then I thought I heard a far¬
no sound. And the room was entire¬ away, soft, vibrant humming sound.
ly empty except for a huge reclin¬ At first it was almost inaudible,
ing chair directly across from the but it grew to a steady, lowpitched
entrance. It too was made of that hum that was more like a vibration
same translucent shimmering sub¬ than a sound.
stance — a stuff so fine that it did¬ Next I was aware that my body
n’t even appear to be material seemed to be sinking more deeply
reality as we know it into the soft substance of the
No voice spoke, but I received chair. I felt as though a gentle
the strong telepathic impression force was pushing against the en¬
that I was to sit in the chair. In tire surface of my body. It was a
fact a kind of force seemed to be peculiarly pleasant sensation that
impelling me directly toward it. As put me into a kind of semi-dream
I sat down I marveled at the tex¬ state.
ture of the material. Seated there¬ As the humming sound increas¬
in I felt suspended in air, for the ed slightly I noticed that the in¬
substance of the chair molded it¬ terior of the room was darkening
self to fit every slight curve or as though a heavy shadow had
movement of my body. passed from the dome engulfing
As I leaned back and relaxed, the room in a twilight. As the light
that feeling of peace and well-being diminished I began to grow ap¬
intensified. Then a movement drew prehensive. Suddenly I had the
my attention toward the entrance. realization of how alone and help¬
I saw that the walls appeared to be less I actually was. For a bad mo¬
noiselessly moving to close the ment I was on the edge of panic in
aperture. In a few seconds the door the tightly sealed, darkening room.
had vanished and the room was ap¬ Then ... I heard music. It seem¬
parently sealed with no indication ed to be coming from the walls. I
that there had ever been an en¬ just couldn’t believe my ears when
trance. I recognized the melody as my.fa¬
The closing of that door cut me vorite song. I wondered, how did
off entirely from the outside world. they know my favorite piece? The
For an uncomfortable moment I song was “Fools Rush In,” and it
felt lost to my family and friends. brought back- tender memories. As
But almost immediately a warm, I listened the panic faded for I
pleasant glow passed over me giv¬ realized how safe I was with them,
ing me once more that feeling of who knew my every thought,
peace and security. I breathed dream and cherished hope!
64 MYSTIC

Reassured, I settled backto enjoy As I stared, the lights inside


the music. In a few seconds the in¬ darkened. Then either the entire
terior of the room began to grow craft or the seat turned slightly
lighter again. Soon it was more more to the left and the aperture
brilliantly lighted than ever and widened about three more feet I
the humming sound was almost saw a huge globe surrounded with
inaudible. a shimmering rainbow. I trembled
“Where are they taking me?” I as I realized I was actually look¬
wondered, as I half listened to the ing upon a planet from some¬
music. For I was certain that the where out in space. The planet it¬
craft I was in must be moving al¬ self was of a deep, twilight-blue in¬
though I never once felt any tensity and the iridescent rainbow
change in air pressure and the air surrounding it made it appear like
itself remained as fresh and cool a dream vision. I couldn’t see it all,
as though it came from a moun¬ for a portion at the bottom of the
tain top. Once I wondered if they sphere was cut off by the floor line.
were taking me to their world — Now I heard that voice I remem¬
or, if I was going to spend eternity bered so well. “Orfeo, you are look¬
in space in that pearly igloo. ing upon Earth—your home! From
here over a thousand miles in space
While I was still wondering I
it appears as the most beautiful
felt the push against the surface of
planet in the heavens and a haven
my body lessen — then cease alto¬
of peace and tranquility. But you
gether. The music stopped playing
and your Earthly brothers know
and the humming vibration in the
the true conditions there.”
floor died away too. I was certain
that whatever type of motive pow¬ There was silence for a moment.
er was used was housed somewhere Then I noticed that the room was
below the floor as the faint vibra¬ apparently revolving away from
tory hum definitely came from Earth. Gradually the heavens came
there. into view — an awesome, breath¬
Then smoothly and noiselessly taking sight from that tiny craft.
the chair made a quarter turn to¬ All space appeared intensely black
ward the wall. Even as much as I and the stars incredibly brilliant,
trusted my unseen friends I was a set like jewels against black velvet
little frightened at this. Tensely I — large, small, single and cluster¬
waited, gripping the arms of- the ed. I felt lost in a strange, ethereal
chair. Directly in front of me a world of celestial wonder.
circular opening appeared in the All was brooding peace, silence,
wall about six feet in diameter but law, order and indescribable beau¬
everything appeared hazy through ty. A deep feeling of reverence pos¬
it sessed me. I had never been an ac-
I TRAVELED IN A FLYING SAUCER 65

tively religious man, but in that unison.


moment I knew God as a tangible, The huge ship began moving up¬
immutable Force that reached to ward and toward the left. One large
the furthest ends of the universe. “porthole” after another opened in
And I felt assurance that the be¬ rapid succession as the ship ascend¬
ings in whose care I was at that ed until what appeared to be three
moment were close to that Infinite decks were visible and I could
Power. catch fleeting glimpses of the in¬
Now I saw a fantastic object terior of the gigantic sky ship. The
coming slowly into view through inside appeared to be of the same
the “window.” It resembled a dirigi¬ luminous mother-of-pearl substance
ble except that it was definitely which made up the interior of the
flattened at the bottom. It emerged craft I was in. But I saw nothing-
gradually into view from the right. more— no sign of life — no fur¬
I studied it closely wondering at nishings or equipment such as we
its composition. It did not appear on Earth know.
to be metallic like an airplane, but As I watched the ship I realized
was definitely crystalline and gave that the voice as well as the ethere¬
the illusion of transparency. Its al music had actually originated in
light properties definitely suggest¬ the great sky ship. It came to me
ed perfect crystal alloyed through¬ then that this must be a mother
out I surmised it might be some ship and that beings in the ship
sort of crystal-metal-plastic com¬ had remote control over the move¬
bination. When the entire ship was ments of the saucers that skimmed
in view it appeared to be at least and skipped through our atmos¬
1000 feet long and about 90 feet phere. It awed me to realize what
high, but it could have been a great a high degree of intelligence and
deal larger for there was no way to what expert hands were behind the
judge how close I was to it saucer phenomena.
I stared fascinated at the half- As the craft moved further out
ethereal “ship,” scarcely conscious into space I noticed what appeared
that I was again hearing music. to be a kind of rotor at each end of
But as my ears caught a startling, the craft. I say rotor, but actually
unfamiliar strain, I listened intent¬ the things appeared to be vortexes
ly— music such as I had never of flame.
heard or could ever imagine. It is With my limited knowledge I
beyond description for it was not judged these incredible discs of fire
music as we know it nor was it to be tremendously powerful pow¬
played to our musical scale. It was er-plants whose terrific energy
strange, haunting drifts of melody could be diverted to almost any
that brought visions of star galax¬ purpose. The discs I had first seen
ies and planets spinning in perfect were used as radio transmitters
66 MYSTIC

and receivers; then as a huge three- in what way they had mastered the
dimensional television screen on terrific pressure and temperature
which, through some sort of tele¬ changes so that I was never con¬
pathic contact, it was possible both scious at any time of variations in
to see and hear. And now I saw either? And their motive power —
those same discs apparently used what was the fantastic secret of
as motive power for the vast sky those green fireballs? Possibly they
ship. It was my guess that just such were vortexes of magnetic power
a power-plant had shot the very which operated almost silently and
craft I was in a thousand miles out with astounding efficiency. What a
into space in a mere matter of min¬ wonder world their planet must be,
utes and without any discomfort to I thought as I gazed in awe at the
me. It was clearly evident that all crystalline dream-ship passing from
of the bewildering and insurmount¬ my line of vision.
able problems of space travel that Slowly then the room turned
baffled our engineers and scientists back toward the left and the Earth
had been overcome by these beings appeared once more with its shim¬
to such an extent that the entire mering rainbow halo. Dimly I
trip into outer space was as simple could make out the faint outlines
as a ride in an elevator. of the Western Hemisphere in
I wondered if they had discov¬ varying shades of deep misty blue.
ered the secret of resisting gravity Also I could see faint puffs of light
with its counter force; if not, then scattered here and there which I
by what other means had they con¬ judged to be the larger cities of the
quered or neutralized gravity? I North American Continent.
remembered that Earth’s scientists Two flying saucers darted into
believed that a man in a space ship my line of vision and sped down¬
would be absolutely weightless and ward toward Earth. Just as abrupt¬
apt to float about. I lifted my hand, ly they decelerated and hung sus¬
let it drop to the arm of the chair. pended in space as pinpoints of
I detected no difference in gravita¬ light As I was wondering about
tional pull from what I would have them I heard the voice say that one
felt on Earth. Thus I realized that was over Washington, D. C. and
they must have created an artificial the other over Los Angeles. Los
gravity in the floor of the craft. Angeles — the word echoed
I wondered too how they had strangely in my consciousness as I
overcome the menace of lethal cos¬ gazed at the faint brush of light
mic rays, meteors, sky debris, etc. that was a great sprawling city. I
Surely my ship carried no tons of tried to remember that Los An¬
lead shielding scientists declared geles was my home, but it seemed
necessary for adequate protection only vaguely familiar — a place
from cosmic rays. Also, I wondered remembered somewhere in time.
TRAVELED IN A FLYING SAUCER 67

“Tonight, Orfeo. you have ex¬ kind is a deeper knowledge and un¬
plored a tiny way into the limitless derstanding of their own true na¬
highways of the cosmos. Through tures and a greater awareness of
your own efforts the road may later the life-and-death problem facing
be widened for you. Tonight you them. Whether they shall survive
an entity of Earth have come close upon Earth — or perish to begin
to the Infinite Entities. For the again anew! This has happened in
present you are our emissary, Or¬ the past and it is possible for it to
feo, but you must act! Even though happen again!
the people of Earth laugh derisive¬ “But now it is time to go home
ly and mock you as a lunatic, tell again, Orfeo.”
them about us!” I was aware again of the gentle
“I will ... I will,” I whispered push of my body against the cush¬
haltingly knowing that everything ioned chair. Far away I could feel
I said was heard by them even as more than hear the pulsing vibra¬
all my thoughts were known to tion beneath the floor. I realized I
them. was being taken back down to
The voice continued “Tonight a Earth.
privilege has been yours, Orfeo. We In an incredibly short time the
love the children of Earth and it is wall opened and I saw the familiar
our desire to help them as the hour surroundings outside. Reluctantly
of crisis approaches. But only I got up from the comfortable chair
through such harmless ones as you and left the strange craft. In a daze
can we work. I walked away from it; then curi¬
“The aggressive men of Earth ously turned to look at it from the
want our scientific advancements. outside once more. But it was gone.
For these they would shoot our I looked up and there it was high
crafts from the skies — if they in the sky faintly visible as a kind
could. But additional scientific of fuzzy luminous bubble. Then
knowledge we cannot give to Earth, suddenly it was not there at all,
as much as we might like to — not but high in the northeastern sky I
even the simple key to the secret saw a red, glowing disc which
of magnetic power. For man’s ma¬ changed to green and then van¬
terial knowledge has far outstrip¬ ished.
ped the growth of brotherly love For days afterward I was be¬
and spiritual understanding in his wildered, confused and found it
heart. Therein lies the danger. To difficult to become interested again
add to man’s scientific knowledge in my work and daily life.
now would be as foolhardy as giv¬ I began telling people about my
ing matches to a thoughtless child experiences as they had requested
in a room filled with gun powder. me to do. But everyone,laughed at
All that we can hope to give man¬ me. Several newspapers printed de-
68 MYSTIC

risive accounts of “The Saucer experiences as best I could recall


Man.” I did not mind for myself them and finally at my own ex¬
but it cut deeply to see the embar¬ pense published the account in a
rassment and humiliation it caused small paper I called “The Twenti¬
my two sons. They knew people eth Century Times.”
were saying their father was a Since the publication of the sin¬
“screwball.” They didn?t want to gle issue of this little paper a num¬
go to school because their com¬ ber of persons have become inter¬
panions laughed at them. I knew it ested. Many of these are now con¬
all hurt Mae, my wife, too. But vinced that I am telling the truth
both she and the boys understood and. also that I am not a “psycho.”
and believed what I told them. I am deeply grateful.
Never once did they criticize me or Max Miller, president of Flying
ask me to retract my accounts. For Saucers International has not
this I was deeply grateful. doubted my story and has been
I wanted so much to do some¬ most cooperative and helpful. He
thing constructive but I didn’t has permitted me to speak each
know how to go about it. I began week at the open meeting of the
calling various military and de¬ Association held every Sunday
fense offices. The personnel of sev¬ afternoon at the Hollywood Hotel.
eral of the smaller ones laughed I have appeared on several radio
openly and passed me off, I know, and television shows and I am so
as a crackpot. But it was with tre¬ thankful that I am finding more
mendous relief I found the really and more persons who do not
important offices referred me to laugh at me in open derision, but
men who were genuinely interest¬ at least listen with open minds.
ed. They questioned and cross- I’m still working at my regular
questioned me concerning “classi¬ job at Lockheed, but in my spare
fied” information I gave them. As time I am doing what I can to tell
this information concerns the all who will listen what those be¬
“enemy” it cannot, of course, be ings from that other world are
divulged here. really like and report as best I can
As a few people began to listen, their message to us.
to me I started writing down my END

YELLOW FIRE!
Now it’s yellow fireballs. At first series of lights, twelve in number,
they were green. At Marion, N. C., in red, green and yellow. At Se¬
both Air Force personnel and quoia National Park, yellow fire-
civilians saw a brilliant yellow fire¬ bells 1000 feet in diameter caused
ball, which winked out, then was all the switchboard plugs at head¬
Replaced by a diamond-shaped quarters to fall out.
International
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LEAGUE OF THE LIVING DEAD
This is your wife, whom you have just buried, standing before
you; it is really so, for her fingerprints prove it. But she is a
stranger! Some thing has stolen her body!

Can a thing like this really happen? Can a dead body be inhabited
by another entity? All through the dim mists of time there have
been stories of the dead coming back to life—coming back as per¬
fect strangers to those who knew and loved them. Are these just
stories, or is there some basis for truth in them? And if they are
true, just what is it that happens? What is a zombie, in actuality?
What is a werewolf? What is a vampire? Are they not only differ¬
ent manifestations of the same thing? Is there room in science for
the horrors that many hold superstitiously to be true?

Illustration by Eberle
71
72 MYSTIC

T“^ ARBARA had been dead for The hair in the page-boy bob;
It'S seven months when Martin the crystalline blue of her eyes;
* M saw her in the little club on the smooth, almost perfectly hemi¬
Forty-second Street. spherical curve of her breasts; the
He was on his seventh doiible- tilt of her brows— Every inch of
bourbon-and-water, and his eye¬ her was Barbara. A man doesn’t
sight, poor as it was, was consider¬ live with a woman for eight years
ably better than his critical judg¬ and not know her—not even when
ment. He squinted his eyes to get he’s boiled to the ears.
a better look. None of the trio at the booth no¬
She was toying with a half-emp¬ ticed him at first. Martin was a
ty glass and staring in rapturous six-foot two-hundred pounder who
concentration at the six-piece com¬ filled a tux nicely and could quite
bo which was permitting its drum¬ obviously handle himself in an
mer the ecstasy of a rhythmic emergency, but the dance had just
grand-mal seizure. Across from her ended, and the people milling
sat two men; the one on the outside around him as they came from the
was tall and saturnine, the other floor were doing a pretty fair job
somewhat shorter and wider across of camouflaging him.
the shoulders. The little group didn’t see him
Martin was immediately stab¬ at all until he placed his hands
bed with twinges of jealousy. The carefully on the edge of the table,
leaned over, and said: “Honey,
fact that his wife couldn’t possibly
whatinhell are you doing here?”
be there meant little to him at the
moment; the fact that she was It was an inane thing to say. It
there with somebody else did mean wasn’t the thing you really ought
a great deal. to say to a woman you know is
He decided he had to have a dead. But somehow, Martin could¬
closer look. He poured the remain¬ n’t think of anything else to say.
der of drink number seven down She turned those blue eyes on
his throat, and made his way to¬ him with a look that carried no
ward the bar. On the way, he sign of recognition.
would have to pass the booth She said: “I beg your pardon? I
where she sat. don’t think—?”
By the time he had arrived at Martin just stood there, weaving
the booth in question, his resolve to and baffled, as the whole enormous
go to the bar had dissolved into the insanity of the situation flooded
vague mists of some ethanolic over him. The last hastily-downed
Limbo. There was no longer any drink began to hit him, and his
doubt in his mind that the woman . sight spun kaleidoscopically.
before him was Barbara. The girl’s voice said: “Gregor,
LEAGUE OF THE LIVING DEAD 73

he’s sick. Call a waiter or some¬ ing out of the night before. He’d
thing. Who is he?” emptied it and put it in his pocket.
“Never mind,” said the taller of He looked at it without touching
the two men, “I’ll help him. Come it, trying to get the light just right.
along, friend.” Sure enough, the e were smudges
“Here, chum,” came the other on it. Impossible to tell whose,
man’s voice, “have a drink.” though.
“Give him mine,” said the girl, But he knew how to find out.
“then get him in a cab.” He picked up the phone and
Dimly, Martin felt a glass being dialed.
pressed into his hand, and he hasti¬ When the police switchboard
ly emptied the contents into his answered, he said: “James Martin
stomach. Then the world went here. Give me. Lieutenant Dono¬
away on a blue-gray fog. van, Homicide.” He waited a mo¬
ment.
W HEN he woke up the next
morning, he was in his own
“Hello, Donny. Jim. Look, can
you get out for a cup of coffee? I
bed, fully dressed except for his don’t know how important it is—
shoes and coat. He felt exactly as yet. Okay. The usual place in half
he deserved to feel. an hour.”
A double Bromo, a half-pint of He hung up and began to dress.
tomato juice, two cups of coffee, Donovan was already waiting
and three cigarettes later, he felt for him in the Child’s restaurant
well enough to get into the shower just off Times Square. He sat down
without having to sit down. in the booth, and said: “Donovan,
All the time, his mind was boil¬ you know me, don’t you?”
ing. Had it been Barbara, or had¬ The little detective looked at
n’t it? Logically, it couldn’t be. Bar¬ him over his coffee cup. “Well, the
bara was dead. He had been with face is familiar, anyway.”
her the night she died. “You know what I mean. As a
And he had held her hand, cry¬ lawyer, I’ve always played it
ing, until it was as cool as the chill square with the cops, and with
atmosphere of death itself. you especially. I want to ask you
Martin towelled himself until his a favor—unofficially—and I want
skin tingled, and walked back into your word that you won’t say any¬
the bedroom. thing about it.”
That was when he saw the Old Donovan peered at him from
Fashioned glass sitting on his slate-gray eyes. “Marty, you know
dresser. I’d probably cut my own throat
He knew instantly that it was for you—but not without a reason.”
the glass Barbara had been drink¬ Martin looked at him for a mo-
74 MYSTIC

ment, then: “Here’s the reason.” The resistance to intense shock


His right hand reached into his that had made James Martin the
coat pocket and brought out the brilliant trial lawyer that he was
Old Fashioned glass. came back in that instant. Calmly,
“So?” Donovan raised his eye¬ he told Donovan everything he
brows. could remember about the night
Martin leaned forward earnest¬ before.
ly. “Donny, all I want is for you There was a long pause on the
to indentify any latent prints on phone, then: “Is that the straight
that glass. And tell me whose they dope, Marty?”
are. And—don’t tell anyone else.” “That’s the straight dope.”
Donovan ran his tongue around Another long pause.
the inside of his cheek. “Mind if I “Marty, we’re taking some time
ask why? Whose do you figure they off. Remember that little place in
are?” Greenwich Village we used to go
Martin leaned back. “If I told to when we were in school? Meet
you, you’d think I was nuts. If it is me there in half an hour.”
who I think, you’ll know the an¬ “But, Donny, I —” He stopped.
swer as well as I.” He looked at The phone was dead.
his watch. “Look, Donny, I haven’t When Donovan talked that way,
been to the office yet this morning, he meant it Martin grabbed his
and I’ve got work to do. Can you hat, took the elevator down, and
phone me there?” flagged a taxi.
“Sure.”
Martin picked up the check and
made his way toward the cashier.
D URING the ride, he tried to
keep his mind focused, but
Two hours later, his phone rang. it kept swirling around in unreal
He picked up the receiver. “Martin circles, confusing him. At the des¬
speaking.” tination, he almost forgot to tip
“Look here, Marty,” Donovan’s the cabbie, a thing he invariably
voice came sharply over the instru¬ did.
ment, “if this is a joke, I don’t think He pushed open the door of the
it’s funny! And if it isn’t, I want bar and saw the little policeman
an explanation!” waggling a finger from one of the
Martin felt something cold and rear booths.
paralyzing inside his brain. He He walked back and sat down.
knew very well what Donovan was “Donny, what —■”
going to say, even before he asked: “Don’t say anything until you’ve
“What do you mean, Donny?” finished your drink, and then let
“I mean this glass you gave me! me do the talking,” Donovan said
What are Barbara’s prints doing all with peculiar Irish logic.
over it?” Martin swallowed the bourbon
LEAGUE OF THE LIVING DEAD 75

that Donovan had waiting for him, SEAN O’BRIAN


then looked at the detective ex¬ PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR
pectantly. Come in
Donovan stared at his fingernails Following the sign’s advice, they
as though he were undecided about stepped into the outer office; an
where to start. Finally, he looked office which was not furnished in
up. accordance with the shabby-gen¬
“Marty, there’s something teel flavor of the rest of the build¬
screwy here. We both know Babs ing.
is dead. And yet, I know you well The walls were paneled in fine
enough to take your word about oak, and three tastefully chosen
what happened last night. But as a watercolors decorated them. The
police officer, I can’t touch it. I furniture was modern and expen¬
don’t have enough to go on. The sive. The wall-to-wall rug was
prints? Obviously faked. I can’t thick and luxurious.
start anything on evidence like And the lovely girl with the soft
that. brown hair who was smiling at
"And somehow—•” he paused, them from behind the reception
groping for words, “— somehow, I desk completed the picture.
don’t think we want a police in¬ “Good afternoon, Lieutenant,”
vestigation.” she said, in a voice that sounded
Martin didn’t say anything. He like the ripple of water over the
didn’t even feel anything except lakes of Killarney.
the peculiar numbness of an un¬ “How are you, Miss McElhiney.
real situation. Is Sean in?”
Donovan rubbed his chin ner¬ “He’s busy right now, but he’ll
vously. “You’ve got the money for be ready in a few minutes.”
a private investigator, haven’t you? “Fine.” Donovan turned back to
Well, I know just the man for you. Martin. “Look, Marty, this is en¬
Come along.” Donovan rose and tirely out of my jurisdiction. I don’t
Martin followed him out the door want to be told anything unless
to the street. Sean himself tells me.
They walked several blocks, “Trust Sean. He knows his busi¬
turning a couple of times, and Don¬ ness, and he’s a fine man. Tell him
ovan finally pulled to a halt in everything you told me and answer
front of the entrance to a small all his questions.”
office building. He chewed at his lip for a mo¬
He led the way up a flight of ment, then went on. “You’re not
stairs, down a hall, to the door of going to like what you find, I think,
a small office. but you’ve got the guts to take it.”
The lettering on the door said: Then he turned to the girl. “Miss
76 MYSTIC

McElhiney, you can tel} Sean that Martin shook his head, word¬
James Martin is a man he can lessly.
trust with his life.” “Neither do I. There is no such
With that, he stepped out the thing. Everything in this universe
door, closing it behind him. operates according to the natural
Martin blinked. Somehow, laws of this universe. We may not
things seemed to be happening know all those laws, but they exist,
too fast for him. What was all nevertheless.
this incredible nonsense? Vaguely “Now, Donovan wouldn’t have
he heard the girl’s voice talking brought you here unless there was
over the interoffice phone, then he something definitely queer about
realized she was talking to him. your case. Something that seems
He wrenched his mind back into supernatural. I don’t handle any
the room. “I beg your pardon?” other kind of case. So, regardless
of how silly it may sound, I’ll listen
“I said,” she smiled, “that Mr.
to what you have to say without
O’Brian will see you now.”
calling for the nearest psychiatrist.
The inner office was similar to
Okay?”
the outer in style. Along one wall
Something clicked in Martin’s
ran a monstrous bookcase filled
brain, and the fog that had seemed
with books of every description; it
to cover it vanished, washed away
looked as though Sean O’Brian had
by the matter-of-fact attitude of
made a point of collecting a rep¬
Sean O’Brian’s speech. Martin re¬
resentative sample of every type
laxed.
of book published since Gutenberg.
“Okay, here it is. Last night, I
O’Brian himself was a tall, mus¬ was in —”
cular young man with light brown
Martin went over the whole
hair and deep-set blue eyes. He
thing again, trying to remember as
waved to a leather upholstered
best he could exactly what had
chair before the desk.
happened. As he did, Sean
“Sit down, Mr. Martin.” O’Brian’s eyes began to narrow,
Martin sat, not quite knowing and a deep inner excitement began
how to begin telling his reason for to light them.
being there. It suddenly occurred When Martin had finished,
to him that he really wasn’t quite O’Brian said: “About that glass—
sure why he was there. did the girl hand it to you?”
O’Brian seemed to sense Mar¬ “Uh—no; the man, I think. ’The
tin’s fuzzy state of mind. tall one.”
“Mr. Martin, before you begin, “Mmmm!” Sean seemed to find
let me ask you a question. Do you a great significance in that state¬
believe in the supernatural?” ment.
LEAGUE OF THE LIVING DEAD 77

He flipped the intercom switch. the lack of hemoglobin that killed


“Alice, see if you can get hold of her. Right?”
Lieutenant Donovan. He ought to If Martin had been the type to
be back at headquarters by now.” look flabbergasted, he would have
After- a minute or two, the girl’s done so right there and then. In¬
voice said: “He’s on the line, stead, he nodded. “That’s about
Sean.” what the doctor said. How did you
O’Brian picked up the receiver. know?”
“Donny? Sean. Look, that glass “I didn’t know. I told you I was
Martin brought you—any prints just guessing. Where was your wife
on it besides the girl’s? None but buried?”
Martin’s. I thought so. Look, isn’t Martin named the cemetery, and
it queer that a wet whiskey glass the detective wrote it down on a
should pick up prints? Okay, piece of paper.
thanks, Donny. I’ll let you know.” “All right, Mr. Martin. We’ll do
He hung up and looked back at what we can. I’ll let you know if
Martin. “Martin, doesn’t it strike we find anything.”
you as odd that your wife—if it was “Is there anything I can do?”
your wife should be drinking a Sean looked at him sharply.
warm Old Fashioned?” “Yes, there is, if you don’t mind
“Warm? I don’t remember—-I going through with it.”
was too drunk to remember the “Anything. This is beginning to
taste. What makes you think it was get under my skin.”
warm?” “All right. I want you to go
“Simple. A cold drink condenses back to that bar tonight. Keep your
moisture from the air. A wet glass eyes open. If you see anything or
doesn’t pick up fingerprints too anyone suspicious, strike up a con¬
well, if at all. This glass had good, versation. Don’t let them know
clean prints on it. Q.E.D.: this glass you suspect anything wrong. And,
wasn’t cold. Did you wife like above all, don’t give them your
warm liquor?” name; think up a good phony.
“Good Lord, no! It made her “I want you to see if you can find
sick. But what —” out who they are and where they
“I’m going to make a broad live, but for Heaven’s sake, don’t
guess. Your wife died of an odd make them suspicious.”
form of anemia. For no known rea¬ Martin grinned. “I haven’t been
son, the hemoglobin in her blood a lawyer all these years for noth¬
cells dropped drastically. The ing. I’ll let you know what I find.”
white count remained the same, “Fine. I’ll work on my end of it.”
the red count dropped a little but Somehow, the street looked un¬
not enough to be serious. It was naturally bright when Martin
78 MYSTIC

stepped out into it After the cool He was a swarthy, astonishingly


indirect lighting of Sean O’Brian’s thin man of a little below average
office, the afternoon sun was hot height with dark eyes and a face
and harsh. that looked as though it were made
Nerves, he thought. My nerves of old and well-used Cordovan
are a little shaky. leather.
He hailed a taxi, gave the cabbie Martin noticed him because the’
his address, and sat back in the drink which the waiter had placed
seat, closing his eyes. on the table before the dark-skin¬

W HEN he unlocked his


•partment, the first thing
ned man had not been touched.
And the leather-faced one was also
surveying the room.
he did was mix himself a Scotch There was nothing particularly
and water. That, he figured, would abnormal about him; aftei all, lots
help him relax. of people come into bars to wait
He figured wrong. He couldn’t for someone else. But the thing
seem to settle down; he paced the that drew Martin’s attention was
floor and smoked cigarettes as the pills. Every so often, the dark¬
though he were an expectant faced man would take a small bot¬
father. tle from his pocket, shake a small
The whole thing was senseless. green pill into his hand, and swal¬
Babs was dead; he knew that. But low it without using any liquid to
1je felt he had to keep telling him¬ wash it down. The man looked as
self or he’d forget it. though —
By eight-thirty, he was paying Martin caught something out of
off a cab driver in front of the club the corner of his eye, and his head
where he had seen Barbara the jerked in the direction of the door
night before. It gave him a slight as though he had been jabbed by a
case of the creeps to think that he bayonet. His heart jumped.
might actually find her here again. It was Barbara.
He checked his hat and picked She was alone this time. Martin
out a table jn the corner where he watched her quietly, forcing his
could command a view of the nerves to steadiness.
whole room. He ordered a drink, She didn’t look around, she sim¬
but is was beginning to get warm ply stepped over to the bar and or¬
before he took more than a swal¬ dered an Old Fashioned. Without
low or two. the ice!
It was not until well after nine Finally, Martin made up his
that he noticed that there was an¬ mind. He finished his drink and
other person in the bar who also walked over to the bar. He pre¬
seemed to be watching for some¬ tended not to notice her at first; he
one. ordered another drink. After a mo-
LEAGUE OF THE LIVING DEAD 79

ment or two, he saw her face in the together. It didn’t work; she missed
mirror. She was watching him. every one of them.
James Martin was a criminal Martin was so intent on his
lawyer with a brilliant record in character analysis that it took him
the courtroom; in other words, he the better part of two hours to
was an actor who did his best work realize that her conversation did
under strain. He turned to her, have one definite goal. The spark
smiling. was missing from her small talk;
“Hello. I thought you looked fa¬ there was none of Barbara’s usual
miliar,” he said smoothly. “I want wit and brilliance. This Louise, as
to apologize for my behavior last she called herself, simply didn’t
night.” have any originality in her think¬
ing. But, in spite of all that, he
She returned the smile. “It was
nothing, really. You seemed to could see where she was leading.
think I was someone you knew.” She was about as subtle as a
Her look was suddenly calculating train wreck.
and watchful. He couldn’t help himself. The
“Did I?” He looked innocent. “I girl had none of Barbara’s brains,
must really have been boiled. I but she did have Barbara’s body or
don’t think anyone else could look a reasonable facsimile thereof. And
like you.” the Scotch helped, too.
Her face softened. “Thank you.”
TT was well after four in the
“May I buy you a drink?”
“Why, yes, thanks.”
JL morning when he woke up in
the hotel room. His head ached
After the drinks were ordered, and his tongue felt fuzzy, and it>
she looked up at him coyly. “Let’s took him a few seconds to realize
go over to the table. I don’t like to
what had awakened him.
talk at a bar.”
The door had closed. He looked
He followed her over and pulled around. The girl was gone. In spite
out her chair for her. of his head, he jumped up and
The perfect gentleman, he grabbed his pants. The wallet was
thought. So far, he was doing fine, still there, undisturbed. He dressed
but he hadn’t learned anything. If quickly, eased the door open and
this woman was Barbara, she was looked down the hall toward the
doing a better job of acting than elevator. The door was just sliding
he’d thought Barbara capable of. shut.
He hoped for a while that she’d Martin ran toward the stairway
quit acting when they were alone and went down them at a rate that
at the table; he kept throwing her would have broken his neck with
the straight lines to some of the one misstep.
pet jokes he and Barbara had had The girl was just going out the
MYSTIC

lobby door when Martin reached Then it hit him. The face be¬
the lobby. There had been two longed to the little leathery-faced
things in his favor: she had had to man who had been taking the
wait for the elevator, and there green pills in the bar.
were only three flights of stairs to “Sit up,” the little man said, “and
run down. take these.” His hand held three
He followed her to the street at white tablets.
a more leisurely pace. The street “What are they?”
was pretty well deserted at that “Fifty milligrams of thiamine
hour, and he didn’t want to attract and two aspirins.”
attention. He took them and washed them
He didn’t notice the car pull up down with water from the glass
to the curb behind him. In fact, he the little man handed him.
had no idea that there was anyone As the pain began to subside,
around but the girl until something Martin began to take in his sur¬
slammed hard against the side of roundings..
his head. He was lying on a slab of mar¬
ble in a large room. Around the
itT X THAT shall we do with walls of the room were a series of
V V him?” said a voice. panels about two and a half feet
“Seal him up until he dies. Then square. He recognized where he
he can join us,” said another. was. It was a morgue.
“We must hurry, then; It is late. Each of the panels concealed a
Soon the sun will be up.” drawer within which, presumably,
Martin heard the words vaguely there lay a body.
and tried to say Something, but all He looked at the little brown
he could get out was a groan. When man. “Who the devil are you,^and
he did, somebody kicked him in the where are we? And why did you
head again and he went back to slug me?”
sleep. “Didn’t slug you. Here.” He pull¬
The next time he woke up, there ed out a billfold and spread it
was a light shining in his eyes and open. The card within said:
a face looming over him. He tried IBRIM GROME
to focus his eyes, but the pain in Special Investigator
his head rose to a crescendo and he Sean O’Brian Agency
had to close his eyes. Grome popped a green pill into
“It’s about time you came his mouth and continued. “You’re
around. How do you feel?” in a morgue. I followed you when
“Ooooh! Lousy.” Martin opened you left the bar with the girl. Fol¬
his eyes again and looked at the lowed you out of the hotel. Knew
face. It was familiar, but he didn’t she’d leave before dawn. Saw you
quite place it at first get slugged. Followed their car
LEAGUE OF THE LIVING DEAD 81

here. Managed to sneak in when Somewhere, deep inside him,


they brought you here. Can’t get Martin knew what he was going to
out now. Time lock.” see, but on the surface of his mind
The man . talked like a Western was a block that refused to let the
Union message. full realization come.
“What do you mean ‘time lock’?” There was a scrabbling sound,
Martin asked confusedly. something like rats in the walls.
Ibrim Grome waved toward the Suddenly, one of the doors popped
massive door of the vault. “On the open. Martin watched in horror as
door. Won’t open until after sun¬ first a hand, then a head, appeared
down. They’re getting smart.” from the interior of the coffin. It
“Who’s getting smart?” was a very old man. As he climbed
Grome’s gesture took in the oc¬ out, Martin could see that he was
cupants of the morgue. “Them. naked.
Even got time locks on most of the “Come out, brothers! It is time!”
drawers. Clever.” He glanced at his the old man’s voice sounded
watch. “You been out sixteen hoarsely.
hours. Mostly ' whiskey. Almost The others began to push them¬
sundown again now. We better selves out of the coffin drawers.
hide.” Martin felt the back of his neck
Martin didn’t feel up to arguing. tingle coldly as the center of the
Grome opened one of the doors room began to fill with — things.
along the wall just above eye level. He couldn’t think of them as hu¬
“They put you in here,” said man. Barbara was there, but he no
Grome. “Get back in. If they look longer thought of her as human,
inside, play dead. I’ll leave door either. Not since last night.
open a crack. That way, you can He also recognized the two men
see. Don’t give yourself away. Barbara had been with the first
They’ll kill you.” night he had seen her.
Martin climbed inside and lay The dried and withered old man
down, his head turned so that he began to speak. “We have work to
could see through the crack in the do, brothers. Bring out the New
door. The brown-faced detective One.”
climbed up to another tier, opened Two of the others opened one
a cubicle, and concealed himself. of the doors and slid the slab out
It seemed like an eternity before The cadaver which lay upon it was
anything happened. Martin’s head a blonde woman in her middle
had almost quit hurting and he was thirties. Her eyes were half open
getting restless. and filmed. She was very obviously
Then there was a sudden chorus dead.
of clicks! The time locks had The rest stood around her in a
opened. circle and held hands, and then
82 MYSTIC

two of them grabbed the blonde You’ve spent most of the time
woman’s hands, completing the cir¬ asleep. Not that I blame you. After
cle. two clouts on the head and the
The old man cut the lights, and shock of what you saw — plus too
the room was plunged into dark¬ much Scotch, you’ve got a perfect
ness. right to pass out. But you’d better
There was nothing to see at first, get a grip on yourself.”
but gradually a blue glow appeared. “I feel okay.” Oddly enough, ex¬
It seemed to come from the blonde cept for a tender spot behind his
woman’s body Slowly, it bright¬ right ear, he did feel okay.
ened until the whole- room was “I had a doctor in here to look
filled with the weird blue light. you over,” Sean explained. “He
Then, quite suddenly, the glow gave you a glucose injection. You
faded, seeming to sink into the hadn’t eaten all day.”
woman’s body. There was silence Martin sat up on the bed. Ibrim
for a moment, then the lights went Grome was seated across the room
on. putting a green pill in his mouth.
The blonde was sitting up on “Chlorophyll,” he explained. “Hali¬
the table! tosis, y’know.”
Everything seemed to go hazy Sean handed Martin two sand¬
for Martin after that. He was wiches and a glass of milk, and
vaguely aware that the things were Martin realized suddenly that he
dressing and leaving one by one. was starving. As he wolfed them
He had sense enough to close his down, the Irishman began to ex¬
eyes when the old man opened the plain.
door to the cubicle he was in, but “I’ve been after this bunch for
he only partially heard the com¬ over a year now, but I didn’t know
ment about his dying soon. any way to lay my hands on them.
For the fourth time in twenty- Stupid as they are in some ways,
four hours, he passed out cold. they’re pretty clever at hiding out.”

T HIS time when he woke up,


it was Sean O’Brian’s face he
“But what in Heaven’s name are
they?” Martin asked.
“Vampires. Or at least,” Sean
saw. He felt a great deal better corrected himself, “the basis for the
than he had the last time he’d vampire legend. Of course, in the
come out of it. passage of time, the legend has be¬
“Whoo!” he said, “Did I have a come so loaded with superstitious
screwy dream!” And then he knew nonsense that ninety percent of it
it hadn’t been a dream. “Where —” is false.
“—are you?” finished O’Brian. “The old legend claims that a
“You’re in my apartment. You’d vampire is one of the undead who
better snap out of it, Martin. can, at will, change itself into a bat-
LEAGUE OF THE LIVING DEAD

like form and fly. It attacks the liv¬ cadaver to be re-impregnated after
ing by sucking the blood, and, in death.”
the process, the victim becomes an¬ Martin lit a cigarette with hands
other vampire. that were still shaking a little. He
“If that were really the case, looked up at Sean when he had it
vampires would have overrun the going, and asked: “How come this
Earth long ago. They would mul¬ disease hasn’t spread fast enough
tiply by geometrical progression; to attract attention?”
one becomes two, two becomes Sean frowned. “Well, as I said,
four, four becomes eight, and so on. most people are immune, and it re¬
“Obviously, this hasn’t taken quires intimate contact with a dead
place. Why?” carrier to get it even if you are sus¬
He paused, but the question was ceptible.”
rhetorical; he took a drag off his Martin closed his eyes and shud¬
cigarette and went on. dered.
“The vampire per se is what O’Brian went on. “Just exactly
might be called an electronic virus; how they manage to manipulate
,a web of semi-intelligent electrical the body after death, I don’t know.
force; an energy disease. It has no There are certain definite changes
sex — you noticed the way those in the metabolism; the sebacious
things call each other ‘brother,’ glands of the skin dry up, for in¬
whether the body they happened stance. Remember that glass? The
to inhabit was male or female — woman’s fingerprints were on it,
the method of reproduction is simi¬ but the man’s weren’t. He’d been
lar to that of a colony of bacteria. dead too long.”
Given a suitable medium, it can “What about the warm liquor?”
reproduce and grow. Martin wanted to know.
“In this case, the medium hap¬ “They can’t stand extreme cold
pens to be a freshly-dead human — and to them, ‘extreme’ means
being. Not just any corpse, either; anything below about forty degrees
it has to be prepared by a partial Fahrenheit. Another thing they
invasion before death. Most people can’t stand is ultraviolet radiation;
are immune to the disease. You it disrupts their electronic co-or¬
are, for instance, or I wouldn’t have dination and puts them into a
sent you after your — after the girl. coma. That partially accounts for
“The result’s the same as that their purely nocturnal activity.”
from radioactive poisoning, though Martin shook his head. “After
the physiology of the disease is a this, you’ll have me believing in
bit different. But when the body werewolves, ghouls, ghosts, lepre¬
dies, the pre-invasion virus dies, chauns, troll, bogey men, and
too, making it necessary for the things that go boomp i’ th’ nicht. I
84 MYSTIC

thought vampires were a species their inventive and reasoning abil¬


of bat.” ities are practically nil.”
Sean grinned. “I always wonder¬ Ibrim Grome glanced at his
ed how the bat business got into watch, compared it carefully with
the vampire legend myself, until I the clock on the wall, and said:
found that the order Chiropteta is “Dawn in three hours.”
the only animal besides man which Martin blinked. “Good Lord!
is susceptible to the disease. In fact, What day is this?”
it is even more successful with the Sean O’Brian stood up. “Thurs¬
bat because the death of the bat day morning. You haven’t been
doesn’t kill the vampire-virus and out long. As soon as the vampire
there’s no need for a secondary in¬ horde left, he dragged you out of
fection. there and brought you here.”
“As for the rest of those things, Martin glanced at the emaci¬
the answer is that most of them do ated-looking Grome. He hardly
exist. There’s nothing odd about a looked big enough to lift two hun¬
single-celled animal like the amoe¬ dred pounds of dead weight. Must
ba changing its shape, is there? be one of those wiry-muscled char¬
Then why couldn’t a many-celled acters.
animal do it? Werewolves do. “Out of there? Where were we?”
“There are plenty of animals “As I said,” Sean explained, “I’ve
with specialized diets. The koala known for some months that these
eats only eucalyptus leaves; what’s things have been active in the New
the matter with a ghoul having a York area. Now, embalming ruins
specialized diet? a body, and cremation destroys it;
“Ghosts? Simply another form therefore, in. order to propagate,
of the electronic life that the vam¬ the vampire must have control
pire is composed of, except that over the disposal of bodies after
they are more intelligent and don’t death and before embalming oc¬
require a host.” curs. Obviously, that means a
Martin frowned. “What do you funeral home.
mean ‘more intelligent than a vam¬ “The trouble was, I didn’t know
pire’? Seems to me they’re pretty which home until you came to me.
smart.” Then it was easy. I simply check¬
O’Brian shook his head. “Their ed to see which one had taken care
intelligence is very limited. It is of your wife. I found that you,
dependent upon the brain configu¬ among several hundred others, had
ration of the body it is inhabiting, taken out burial policies with this
which is why they- prefer human place — Kimberly’s.”
bodies to bat bodies. But, even “Time to go,” said Grome.
with a human brain to work with, “Yeah.” Sean put on his coat
they have almost no imagination; Martin stood up from the bed.
LEAGUE OF THE LIVING DEAD 85

“I’m going, too,” he announced. good that some human will do you
Sean and Ibrim looked at each in.
other for a second, then Sean said: “And as for ghouls, you have ab¬
“Come ahead, then.” solutely nothing to worry about on
Ten minutes later, they were in that score. They are a branch of
O’Brian’s car, heading for Brook¬ genus Homo that split off from the
lyn. main stream of humanity several
hundred thousand years ago and
Martin, in the back seat, took a
became carrion feeders. They’re re¬
drag off his cigarette, inhaled deep¬
lated to Homo sapiens in the same
ly, and said: “I’ll be afraid to go
way that the vulture is related
out after dark from now on. I’ll
to the eagle. Homo necrophagus
never know when some werewolf
would be the scientific name.
or ghoul is going to jump me.”
“They don’t bother living people
“Nuts!” snorted Grome. at all. Why should they? Their di¬
“It doesn’t work that way, Mar¬ gestive systems require that the
tin,” said O’Brian. “A werewolf is flesh be dead for a good long time;
as human as you or I — or nearly fresh meat is as inedible to them
so. He can change his body a little as rubber is to you.
— as far as the skeletal structure “It’s much easier to buy steak
will permit. But that doesn’t make at the bucher shop and let it lay
a killer out of him. There are a around for a few weeks than it is
good many werewolves who don’t to go prowling through cemeteries
even know they’re any different at night. Besides, embalming ruins
from anyone else. a body. Do you like formaldehyde
“They don’t change to wolves, in your filet mignon?
you know; their bones aren’t plas¬ “Oh, they’d eat human flesh all
tic. Hundreds of years ago, a few right, if it were available, but, when
of them would make themselves you come right down to it, what’s
look hideous to frighten the local wrong with that? They aren’t
natives in order to gain power. The strictly human, so it isn’t cannibal¬
religion of ancient Egypt was ism. And besides, what good is your
started by just such a group. That’s body to you after you’re dead?
where the Egyptians got those gods “You don’t consider maggots,
with the animal heads. saprophytic fungi, hyaenas, vul¬
“But today, most of them are tures, and other such scavengers
just as law-abiding as you or I. who keep the earth clean to be
I’ll admit they’d have a better evil villains, do you? Then why
chance to get away with it, but un¬ worry about ghouls?”
less you get one sore at you, you’re Martin thought it over in si¬
not likely to get killed by a were¬ lence. Put like that, it sounded log¬
wolf— the chances are just as ical, all right. And he could see
MYSTIC

why such people would keep them¬ in. That’s when we’ll hit them.”
selves hidden from the rest of hu¬ Suddenly, Ibrim Grome’s face
manity. Human beings, ert masse, appeared in the window. “We’re all
were still savages. The minorities set, Ibrim. We’ve ' got the place
— ghouls, et al — would be wiped boxed.”
out by Homo sapiens quickly. If Martin jerked his head around.
human beings found such slight Ibrim Grome was still in the front
differences as color and religious seat. He looked back at the man in
beliefs enough excuse for violent the window, and realized that the
persecution, what would they do to faint glow of light from the street
a different species of the same lamps had led him astray. Al¬
genus? though the man had the same dark,
The car was speeding across the leathery face and the same smoky
Brooklyn Bridge, weaving through black eyes, he could see that it was
the light traffic under Sean not exactly the same face.
O’Brian’s cool guidance. Another similar face appeared
It took them nearly ten more behind the first. “Are we ready to
minutes to get to their destination. go, Sean?”

T HE Kimberly Funeral Home


was a big, modernistic struc¬
“Ready,” said Sean. “Come on,
Martin.”
They all piled out of the car,
ture which covered two city blocks. and Martin followed Sean and the
Sean wheeled the car on past it others toward the mortuary. As
and pulled up on the other side of they neared it, Martin could see
the street nearly half a block away. other figures — thin, lean, and
Then he turned and pointed out brown — converging on the build¬
the back window. ing in the pre-dawn darkness.
“See that building behind the “Martin,” whispered Sean,
main structure? The one with no “Climb up that fire escape.” He in¬
windows. That’s where you and dicated a steel stairway going up
Ibrim spent the day yesterday. the side of the main building.
“The vampires will be back be¬ “From the landing up there, you’ll
fore dawn, and it will be the only be able to see the surrounding area.
time we can get at them. The only If there’s any trouble, blow this.”
way we could get through the time He handed Martin a small whistle.
locks in the daytime would be with Martin recognized it as one of
dynamite, and I don’t think' the those supersonic dog whistles which
Brooklyn police would approve were inaudible to the human ear.
of it. Evidently, the Irishman had some
“But the door will be open for a sort of instrument to detect its
little while just before the sun noise.
comes up in order to let the horde Martin did as he was bid. When
LEAGUE OF THE LIVING DEAD 87

he got to the upper landing of the to make sure nothing was happen¬
fire escape, he found that he could ing out there.
see the street and the morgue Then the vampires began to re¬
building behind equally well. turn. In groups of two or three,
The door of the morgue was they came out of the darkness,
open, and Martin could see one of spoke in hushed tones to the guard¬
the vampires sitting inside. He rec¬ ing Gregor, and climbed into their
ognized him as one of the men coffins. Martin turned his head to¬
with whom Barbara had been sit¬ ward the street, and he could see
ting that first night in the bar—the several of them walking toward the
one she had addressed as “Gregor.” mortuary. They probably took
The vampire was evidently acting taxis to some spot a block or two
as a lookout and guard. from the place and walked the rest
For several minutes, nothing of the way so that they wouldn’t
happened. Then, without warning, attract attention.
two figures converged on Gregor Barbara was one of the last to
from the blackness outside the arrive. She was wearing an eve¬
lighted area. ning gown that showed off her
There was a short scuffle, and curves to perfection. Martin shud¬
then the two little brown men dered again.
dragged Gregor out into the dark¬ Finally, the last of the horrors
ness. Martin had seen that one of had come home. Martin began to
the little men was carrying an ul¬ worry. Gregor’s job, presumably,
traviolet lamp. Evidently, it had was to set the time lock on the
put the vampire into a coma. doors after all the vampires were
“asleep” and then climb into his
Martin could see almost nothing
own drawer. If Sean and his men
outside the illuminated area
didn’t attack pretty soon—1
around the open morgue door, so
But Gregor didn’t set the time
for a while he couldn’t be sure of
what was going on. lock; he didn’t even close the
morgue door. Instead, he stepped
Then, astonishingly, Gregor
outside and waved his hand. It was
walked back into the morgue and
getting lightex now, and Martin
took his seat as though nothing had
could see that there were several
happened!
dozen of the little men who looked
Martin almost blew the whistle so much like Ibrim Grome running
before he realized that the detec¬ toward the building.
tive and his men must have every¬ Gregor let them all into the
thing under control or they would morgue, closed the door behind
have warned him by this time. them, and walked away, leaving
Again Martin waited, casting an Grome and his friends in sole pos¬
occasional glance toward the street session of the building.
MYSTIC

A minute or so later, Martin part of the medieval superstition.


heard Sean’s voice calling from the Vampirism is like hog cholera or
foot of the fire escape. hoof-and-mouth disease; you have
“Martin!” His voice was soft, but to destroy the carrier.”
imperative. “Get down here fast! “Burn them?”
The sun will be up pretty soon!” “No. Look at it this way: Every
Martin clambered down the fire life form has its natural enemies.
escape, and he and the detective The vampire is a dead thing that
sprinted toward the car. preys on the living. Its natural
They got inside, but Sean didn’t enemies are living things that prey
start the machine immediately. He on the dead.
stuck a cigarette in his mouth and “Ibrim Grome and his boys are¬
handed one to Martin, who lit it n’t human — they’re ghouls.”
with shaking hands. Martin was quite suddenly sick.
“Is it all over?” he asked the When he could get his breath
Irishman. again, he said: “What—what about
“Just about.” Gregor—the guard? Why did you
“What did they do?” Martin ask¬ let him get away?”
ed dully. “Drive stakes through “Gregor? He didn’t get away.
their heats?” He didn’t like the That wasn’t him who let the boys
idea of Barbara being mutilated in; it was me.” Sean’s voice was
like that. soft. “You see, Martin, I’m — a
“No.” said Sean. “That’s another werewolf.”
THE END

AIR TRAVEL-4,000 YEARS AGO


T'V ID the ancient inhabitants of Then the poem goes on to de¬
JL J India fly 2,000 years before scribe accurately the appearance of
the Birth of Christ? The Sanskrit the cities and countries exactly as
epic, Ramayana, which is many they would look from the air.
centuries older than the stories told The collected writings of the In¬
by the Greek Homer, tells how an dian Agastya contain evidence that
Indian king made a trip in a bal¬ many centuries before western
loon. Kis carriage was called civilization knew of them, Agastya
“Pushpaka,” which in Sanskrit has discovered hydrogen, oxygen,
means “like a butterfly. The Ra¬ and had invented the dry-cell elec¬
mayana contains a detailed story tric battery, electroplating, kites,
of the preparations for the flight hot-air balloons, and propelled
and a description of the balloon. balloons.
TRUTH IS STRANGER
THAN FICTIONS

ES?s«"
3° !S"“

d is □ cash □ check □ m
cJhe J/Lstml Sxile

There is a phenomenon known to occultists as astral


projection. Sylvan Muldoon is one of the most famed
examples of this ability. In brief, it is the ability to leave
your physical body in spirit, and to travel about in per¬
fect freedom, except for a strange psychic connection
with the body, a silvery thread that projects from the
head. In this story the author has given us a sensational
theory to think about. Perhaps, even now, standing be¬
side you, is a discarnate person, out of his body, unknown
to you, impossible to detect—except for unexplainable
thoughts or hunches you may have. Are there astral
beings among us today?

By Chester S. Gefer
90
91
P
92

AUL DUNN’S first sensation


MYSTIC

on the astral plane was that


his head became a powerful
jerking.
of floating quietly in silent He was struggling to move his
darkness. He seemed to have just limbs, to break free from whatever
awakened from sleep, yet his im¬ weird force had him in its grip
pressions were strangely unlike when a sound broke the tomb-like
those he usually had upon awaken¬ silence. It was the administration
ing. building clock, striking the hour.
He missed the warm pressure of He listened as it struck three times,
the bed covers and the shade-soft¬ a little amazed that he could hear
ened yet insistent glare of sunlight it after the unearthly quiet in
against his closed eyes. Closed which his body had performed its
eyes? He knew his were open, but fantastic gyrations.
he saw nothing — neither the blaze The last echoes of the clock
of the sun nor the radiance of the were fading when still another im¬
moon. There was only the dark¬ pression registered upon Dunn. He
ness, complete and impenetrable. could see — mistily at first, but
He tried to move but could not. then with increasing clearness.
He felt queerly immobile and help¬ Amazement crashed through
less. It was as though his body were him. The portion of the room he
paralyzed. That would explain the saw was familiar. He recognized
floating sensation, he thought. the window with the framed pic¬
A cold weight of panic filled him. tures on the wall at one side and
Something was wrong — horribly the oak bureau standing against
wrong. Why couldn’t he move? the other. He knew where he was
Why couldn’t he see? What had now — in his own dormitory room
happened? on the Elm Center nuclear labo¬
As though produced by the fear ratory grounds. But his position
pulsing through him, he became relative to the window told him
aware suddenly of another sensa¬ that he was — incredibly—float¬
tion beside that of floating. It was ing on his back some distance in
a strong tugging at the back of his the air. Not only floating but at the
head. From this region something same time rising steadily toward
like a huge ripple started and pass¬ the ceiling.
ed through him like a convulsion. Again he struggled to move in
His mind was reeling from the the half-conscious fear that his un¬
shock of it when abruptly he felt canny weightlessness might desert
himself fluttering rapidly up and him and let him drop to the floor.
down for all the world as if he were But his limbs remained rigidly im¬
a sheet on a line being whipped mobile.
straight out by the wind. And as he He abandoned his efforts as he
fluttered the pull at the back of discovered that a change in his
THE ASTRAL EXILE 93

weird situation was taking place. Was it his earthly shell that he saw
His body was tilting forward, mov¬ in bed?
ing from the horizontal to the ver¬ As a nuclear technician, trained
tical. In another moment he found in scientific realities, he was in¬
himself standing on the floor of clined to reject this thought He
the room. felt as solid and alive as he ever
He was trying to digest what did. It was impossible to believe
had happened when he felt his that he could be dead. Yet the fact
paralysis leave him. His sense of that there were two of him was
sudden freedom was exhilarating. something he could not explain on
The tugging sensation at the back a normal, physical basis.
of his head remained, but he over¬ Feeling suddenly that he had to
looked this in his relief at being talk to someone about what had
able to move his limbs. happened to him, he turned and
He turned toward the bed from hurried toward the door. Vince
which he had so inexplicably float¬ Halleck lay sleeping in the next
ed— and stared in wild disbelief. room. He would awaken Halleck,
The bed was not empty. A sleeping obtain proof that this was not just
figure lay in it — a young man, an unusually vivid dream. Or
leanly muscular, with blunt, boyish worse, that —
features and thick, tousled brown He halted in stunned surprise.
hair. He had been striding toward the
The man was himself! There door, his hand reaching for the
were two of him. knob. Now he stood in the dormi¬
Stretching froin himself to his tory hall — and the door was still
double in the bed Dunn saw what closed. He had not opened it but
appeared to be a palely glowing had passed through it as if it were
cable. This seemed to issue from no more solid than fog.
the forehead of the sleeping figure A sense of disaster weighted
and the other end, as far as-he Dunn’s mind as he continued to
could determine, was fastened Halleck’s room. He swung his
somehow to the back of his head. knuckles tentatively against the
The presence of the cable at that door — saw his hand disappear to
spot evidently explained the tug¬ the wrist through the apparently
ging sensation he had experienced. solid panel. In despairing resigna¬
Eyes riveted on his double in the tion he pressed forward. Nothing
bed, Dunn tried to organize his impeded him as he stepped into a
whirling thoughts for an explana¬ dormitory room similar in size and
tion of what this incredible situa¬ furnishings to his own.
tion meant. What possibly could Vince Halleck’s stocky form lay
have happened that there should quietly in bed and as Dunn ap¬
be two of him? Had he — died? proached he discovered that Hal-
94 MYSTIC

leek was fully dressed. That was Bending over Halleck’s sleeping
strange — but it was just one of figure, Dunn reached out to shake
several strange things Dunn had the man’s shoulder. His hand met
noticed about Halleck in the past nothing solid. It was as though he
week. grasped at a phantom, an illusion.
Ordinarily Halleck was friendly, As a last resort Dunn shouted into
talkative, as efficient a worker as Halleck’s ear.
the efficient nuclear devices he “Vince! Vince! Wake up!”
helped to build. But lately he had Under ordinary circumstances
taken to speaking little, even to the sheer volume of his voice would
avoiding his intimates at the lab¬ have startled the heaviest sleeper
oratory. In his work he had lost his into waking. But Halleck gave no
sure touch, become fumbling and slightest indication that he had
uncertain. heard.
What was worse, Halleck had Dunn clenched his fists in sud¬
started drinking. Liquor was for¬ den rage at his helplessness. Was
bidden on the laboratory grounds. there nothing he could do to gain
Men who worked on nuclear wea¬ attention? Was he doomed to re¬
pons needed a clear head and main unseen, unheard, unfelt — a
steady nerves. Yet Halleck evi¬ nonentity inhabiting Halleck’s
dently had been smuggling whis¬ world yet excluded from it in some
key into the dormitory. Dunn had baffling way?
learned this just that evening when A sudden flicker of motion drew
Halleck had invited him to his his attention back to the bed. He
room for a drink. stared as he saw what appeared to
Dunn had accepted, hoping to be a pale radiance rising from Hal¬
draw Halleck out and learn what leck’s body. In another moment he
was responsible for the change in realized in amazement that the ra¬
him. He hadn’t been very success¬ diance had the outlines of a human
ful. Halleck merely had explained form — th^t it was, in fact, a body
that he had grown tired of the rising from the body on the bed.
laboratory routine. But it would The glowing replica floated
pass, he had insisted. It was noth¬ smoothly upward in a horizontal
ing serious. position. When some five feet
Dunn had had two drinks, but above the figure in the bed it slow¬
from there on things were hazy. He ed, hung suspended for an instant
could not remember having gone and then began to teeter up and
to bed. He saw that he wore slacks down along its length. Abruptly the
and a sport shirt instead of paja¬ floating shape descended feet first
mas and he recalled now that his to the floor and stood motionless,
double in bed had been similarly turned partly away from Dunn.
dressed. Dunn involuntarily had retreat-
THE ASTRAL EXILE 95

ed from beside the bed almost as was cleared up, but at the same
soon as the first strange manifesta¬ time another was created — what
tions took place. He had not yet had become of Halleck’s other self?
had a direct look at the features of The saturnine-faced man was
the entity which — strangely like studying Dunn from narrowed
a butterfly from a cocoon — had black eyes. The humor had faded
emerged from Halleck’s sleeping from his expression, leaving it hard
form. But recalling his own experi¬ and alert.
ence, Dunn took it for granted that “I see that you are quite con¬
the entity was Halleck. scious — and that you comprehend
The figure turned as if deliber¬ . . .‘certain things,” he said in a
ately to confront Dunn. It now ap¬ quiet voice which yet carried a dis¬
peared quite substantial — as sub¬ tinct overtone of menace. His
stantial as Dunn felt himself to be words had an oddly foreign flavor.
— and like the figure in the bed “Who are you?” Dunn demand¬
it was fully dressed. But with a ed. “What were you doing in Vince
numbing shock Dunn saw that the Halleck’s body—crazy as that may
emergent entity was not Halleck sound?”
after all. The grimly smiling, sat¬ The man bowed slightly. “Per¬
urnine face that swung toward him mit me to introduce myself. I am
was that of a complete stranger! Colonel Leon Borchov of the Pan-
Madness piled upon madness, Slavic Union, secret agent, scien¬
impossibility upon impossibility! tist, explorer—and student of the
Dunn no longer was certain that he occult.”
was not experiencing a nightmare. A cold wind seemed to touch
What he had witnessed did not jibe Dunn. A colonel ... a secret agent
with being fully conscious. It did —and this was 'Elm Center, one of
not jibe with logic — even the logic the largest nuclear research lab¬
of this eerie disembodied state. For oratories iq the country.
though according to that logic it All possible precautions were
was possible for a person to have taken at Elm Center to prevent es¬
two forms—one material, the other pionage or sabotage by agents of
immaterial—it was impossible that the Pan-Slavic Union—yet Bor¬
the immaterial form of one person chov had penetrated every defense.
could inhabit the material form of Dunn’s insides knotted as he
another. thought of what Borchov. might
But it did explain certain things have learned—of the opportunities
about Halleck — his withdrawal he’d undoubtedly had to blow Elm
from his friends, his drinking, his Center sky high. Masquerading as
strange clumsiness on the job. A Halleck, of course, nobody would
stranger had been inhabiting Hal¬ suspect him.
leck’s earthly shell. That mystery Dunn’s eyes sharpened on Bor-
96 MYSTIC

chov in chill awareness of the Dunn. He controlled his emotions


man’s potentialities for doing harm. with an effort. Borchov seemed dis¬
What he saw was a lean, wiry man, posed to talk, to gloat. Dunn saw
slightly stooped, with dark bushy it as an opportunity to learn more
hair retreating from a domed fore¬ about the man’s motives and plans.
head. His features had a distinctly He masked his grim purpose be¬
Asiatic cast, the eyes slightly hind an expression of awed bewil¬
slanted, the cheekbones high and derment. He asked:
prominent. His appearance was “Is that what you used on Vince
somehow scholarly, intellectual, Halleck—the drugs and hypnotic
but his black eyes were unblinking suggestions, I mean?”
and cold — a killer’s eyes — and “Not directly,” Borchov said. “It
his thin mouth had a cruel, im¬ is impossible most of the time for
placable twist. He gave the im¬ astrals to affect those on the phys¬
pression of knowledge, of wisdom, ical plane, or even to communicate,
but his face showed it was an evil except through what are known in
knowledge, backed by a ruthless the West as mediums. A physical
will. accomplice planted at the labora¬
What Dunn glimpsed of Bor- tory long before prepared the way
chov’s character made him think of for me. I but developed the tech¬
Vince Halleck with new anxiety. nique as the result of knowledge
“Where is Halleck — the man which I gained from certain adepts
whose body you seem to have been in Tibet and India. They have
. . . inhabiting? What have you made a science of such matters as
done with him?” astral projection.”
“He is, we might say, wander¬ Dunn ran his fingers through his
ing,” Borchov returned smoothly. already rumpled hair, looking in¬
His smile was mocking. “Not dead, credulous. “You mean you delib¬
as you seem worried he might be, erately separated Halleck from his
since that condition is incongruous body so that you could take over—
here. I believe it would be most that such a thing is possible?”
accurate to say that your friend is “Of course it’s possible!” Borchov
sleep-walking. As you should be snorted. “You have seen the proof
also. Evidently my drugged high¬ of that. And it is possible simply
balls and hypnotic suggestions did because astral projection is a natur¬
not quite produce the desired re¬ al rather than an unnatural process.
sults in your case.” Everyone undergoes astral projec¬
“So that's it!” Dunn exclaimed. tion more or less frequently,
“I thought the drinks might have though few are conscious actually
had something to do with what of doing so. All I have done is to
happened to me.” accelerate and control this natural
Anger and horror struggled in process.”
THE ASTRAL EXILE 97

“I still don’t get it,” Dunn said. render atomic weapons useless. My
“What benefit is there in taking astral agents will spr< • j: along
over another man’s body?” the atomic network of the United
Borchov said coldly. “You cer¬ States to nuclear weapons stock¬
tainly cannot be as stupid as you piles in allied nations. We will pen¬
seem. At present your technically etrate directly into your govern¬
advanced but politically bumbling ment, cause strife and confusion.”
nation enjoys unquestioned leader¬ Borchov’s voice rose exultantly.
ship in the development and manu¬ His sharp features were twisted in
facture of nuclear weapons. This, a Satanic smile. “And nobody will
frankly, has been a strong deter¬ suspect. We will move unseen and
rent to certain military plans of the unheard. Discarnate, we will glean
Pan-Asian Union. every secret, every fact of organ¬
“The only solution was for the ization and leadership. Incarnate,
Pan-Asian Union to ferret out your we will take physical action. We
scientific secrets and thus match will constitute an astral fifth-col¬
your progress in atomic research. umn, the like of which the world
Using physical spies for this pur¬ has never known. We will be in¬
pose has proved unsuccessful. Your vincible. For while our enslaved
government has learned to protect physical shells .can be destroyed,
its secrets well.” we ourselves are indestructible,
Borchov’s black eyes glittered free to seek out and take over other
with sudden emotion. “The Pan- shells!”
Asian Union might have been Dunn felt sick. What he had wit¬
doomed to disintegration as a re¬ nessed already told him that Bor¬
sult of its inability to end the stale¬ chov’s plan, however incredible it
mate. Then I, Leon Borchov, found sounded, could very well succeed.
the answer! Through my knowl¬ And only he knew about it. Only
edge of the occult, I showed how it he could do something to defeat it.
was possible not only for the Pan- A deadly calm settled over
Asian Union to obtain the secrets it Borchov. Studying Dunn from lid¬
needed, but also to sabotage the ded eyes, he said softly, “You are
entire atomic program of the wondering why I have revealed all
United States. this to you. You are even casting
“The solution, of course, is to use about for some way to interfere
astral rather than physical espion¬ with my plans. I have taken no
age agents. But in addition my risks with you, for in your ignor¬
plan is to obtain control of the ance of occult matters you are
bodies of technicians in certain key harmless. As an astral there is no
centers in all atomic laboratories. way in which you can communi¬
At the proper time these captive cate with those on the physical
technicians will destroy reactors. plane, except through a certain few
MYSTIC

psychically developed and experi¬ thing here the Pan-Asian agent had
enced persons. Any others would overlooked, something Dunn could
regard you as a mere ghost—and a use to gain the whiphand, even if
mad one at that.” momentarily?
Borchov smiled thinly. “But Abruptly Dunn remembered his
you will be given no opportunity physical counterpart in the next
to communicate with anyone. For room. If he could don his earthly
although in astral form it is impos¬ form as one dons an overcoat, he
sible for you to be killed, it is pos¬ could spread an alarm—not the
sible nevertheless for you to be... nightmarish tale of what had hap¬
psychically incapacitated. In some pened to him and what he had
this amounts to amnesia, in others learned, but a logical story that
catalepsy or coma—even madness. logical men would accept.
In any case, I shall see that you He could explain, for instance,
are in no position to be dangerous that he had discovered Halleck
to me.” was a spy. There were witnesses who
Dread surged in Dunn. He was could testify that Halleck had been
at a serious disadvantage here, only acting strangely. The laboratory
partly grasping principles and ef¬ authorities would act instantly, for
fects which Borchov understood espionage was a thing they under¬
out of a deep, evil wisdom. He did stood, a menace that hung con¬
not know what force the man could stantly over their heads. Halleck
use against him, but Borchov ap¬ would be locked up for investiga¬
peared grimly confident of his abil¬ tion—and Borchov would lose his
ity to carry out his threat to ren¬ physical vehicle. Before he could
der Dunn helpless. obtain another Dunn would have
That must not happen, Dunn everyone at the laboratory watch¬
told himself desperately. Somehow ing everyone else for some strange
he had to fight back. Somehow he word or action. Hints of an espion¬
had to warn others of Borchov’s age network would spread the
scheme. Everything depended on alarm to other laboratories and
him—the freedom of millions, the Borchov would find himself com¬
very course of civilization. Only he pletely blocked. Halleck, of course,
could keep totalitarian barbarism could be cleared later without
from closing down over the nation much difficulty.
he loved. These thoughts shot through
The knowledge filled him with Dunn’s mind as he tensed himself
an electrifying urgency. He was for a dash that would carry him to
suddenly, lividly aware of the his physical body in the next room.
room, of the furnishings in it, of But before he could move a devel¬
the distance that separated him opment took place that footed him
from Borchov. Was there some¬ to the floor in surprise.
THE ASTRAL EXILE 99

Two men stepped through the realizing that it was more urgent
closed door. One of them was a now than ever that he reach his
complete stranger to Dunn, but body in the next room. He used the
he recognized the other as a ma¬ surge of violent energy to send
chinist named Tony Radek. The himself leaping toward the wall
way the newcomers had passed that separated him from his goal.
through the solid door made it evi¬ Dunn heard startled shouts in
dent that they were astrals. his rear. The wall loomed before
Borchov nodded at Radek. “You him and then was gone as he pass¬
have done well,” he said. He turned ed through it without hindrance.
his attention to the other man. “I His physical counterpart lay
trust that you made the trip here with closed eyes in the bed as he
from the embassy without compli¬ had left it. Hurrying up, he won¬
cations, Shevkin.” dered suddenly how he would be
The man nodded. “It is because able to enter.
you have prepared me well, Col¬ That problem unexpectedly was
onel Borchov. I am ready for the solved for him. As he approached
next step in the plan.” to within several feet of the figure
“Good.” Borchov said. “We will he once more felt the powerful tug¬
take that step in just a moment.” ging at the back of his head. At the
He glanced at Dunn. “No doubt same time what seemed to be a
you and Radek are acquainted. It magnetic force gripped him and
was he who made it possible for me lifted him off his feet. Again' he was
to take over the physical form of aware that he was rigid and float¬
your friend Halleck. He is one of a ing.
group of agents who have been He was guided directly over the
carefully trained for this task. As motionless form in the bed, lower¬
for Shevkin, he is a nuclear expert ed down toward it—and suddenly
who will now take over Halleck’s dropped. Astral and physical merg¬
body.” ed into one—and in the instant of
Borchov paused, his lidded black merging Dunn found himself in
eyes surveying Dunn in sudden hell.
mockery. “That means I must It was as if he had been dropped
move to another physical habita¬ into the body of a man who first
tion, of course. It will interest you, had been driven violently mad and
my young friend, to know that I who now was being burned alive. A
have chosen—yours.” maelstrom of pain caught him and
Dismay and then fury swept whirled him crazily through an
Dunn. The thought of Borchov endless abyss of nerve-shattering
clothing himself in his own flesh horror. Demons shrieked obscenity
was hateful. He fought back an im¬ at him with the voices of thunder.
pulse to throw himself at the man, He was swept by holocausts of
100 MYSTIC

agony, engulfed by vast tidal waves plane are available to those who
of unthinkable fear. know how to use them.”
He screamed for escape, for re¬ Abruptly Borchov extended his
lease—and despaired that it would arms stiffly toward Dunn. A faint
ever come. But as suddenly as if he radiance flashed from the tips of
had stepped from darkness into his rigid fingers. Something like a
light the torment ceased, the fright physical blow struck Dunn and
vanished. He realized dazedly that sent him staggering back. He was
he was rising into the air, gyrating fighting to keep his balance, dazed,
as he did so to the accompaniment when the force struck him again.
of a strong tugging at the back of It had the impact of a club and yet
his head. it was a psychic thing that battered
And then, sick, weak, unuttera¬ at the very foundations of his mind.
bly shaken emotionally, he found He fell to hands and knees. Pain
himself on his feet, swaying, some flamed along his nerves and his
distance from the bed. The motion¬ head seemed filled with a coruscat¬
less figure in it gave no hint of the ing darkness. Yet one thought re¬
inferno locked within its flesh. mained clear — he couldn’t go
Dunn heard a shout of laughter. down. Too much depended on him.
He turned to see Borchov watch¬ He had to keep Borchov from car¬
ing him in derisive amusement rying out his plan.
from across the room. Behind the With a tremendous effort of will
Pan-Asian agent were Radek and Dunn pulled himself erect. Again
Shevkin. the psychic club smashed at him—
Borchov laughed again. “I can and again. It battered at conscious¬
see that you had quite a surprise, ness and sanity with sadistic vio¬
my heroic young friend. What you lence. Dunn reeled, fell. And then
experienced was the special state he was spinning, without thought
of hypnosis in which I placed your or feeling, through a black infinity.
physical body. I set up conditions, His astral form vanished from
you see, that made it prudent for the dormitory room. For to this
your astral self to vacate the prem¬ foitan only consciousness supplied
ises—conditions also that would reality. Walls were no barrier and
prevent you from resuming occu¬ floors gave support only because
pancy.” consciousness expected it. Without
Borchov’s sharp features hard¬ consciousness was . . . space ... a
ened. “You have given me consid¬ drifting . . .
erable difficulty—a fact which I do Light came mistily through the
not quite understand. But I shall blackness around him and swiftly
now see to it that you are rendered grew stronger. A distant murmur
unable to interfere further with my of sound swelled to a steady roar.
plans. Certain forces on the astral Dunn was suddenly and sharply
THE ASTRAL EXILE 101

aware' of motion all about him, of eyes—the face of a man he hated.


life. He brushed the last clinging There was a terrible urgency some¬
tendrils of a black fog from his how connected with this face, a ter¬
senses. rible pain and a drifting through
He stood at the edge of a busy black emptiness. Dunn did not
city street bathed in afternoon know how long he had been drift¬
light. Hurrying crowds thronged ing or how he had arrived here.
the sidewalks and the wide paved He strode aimlessly along the
space between them was filled with sidewalk. People kept getting in
a jerky stream of cars. The air his way as if he were completely
throbbed with the deep rumble of invisible to them. At first he avoid¬
the human current bustling through ed them out of sheer habit, but
the city’s arteries. after several more experiences with
Abruptly Dunn saw a Car bear¬ individuals passing harmlessly
ing down on him as it approached through him he ignored the crowd.
the curb. He leaped back instinc¬ He walked through the thronging
tively—and found himself in the figures as if they and not he were
midst of the throngs hastening phantoms.
along the sidewalk. The afternoon passed as Dunn
Two men, striding hurriedly side wandered without destination or
by side, loomed up in front of him. purpose through the maze of
He dodged to avoid a collision, streets, often doubling back upon
found himself directly in the path his tracks. His memories were still
of a woman approaching from the hazy, but it seemed to him that
opposite direction. There was no there was some warning he had to
time to avoid her. He stiffened for give about the man with the sharp
the impact. face and the slanting eyes. There
Nothing happened. The woman was some great danger connected
passed through him as if he were with this man, a danger that ap¬
not there at all. peared to explain the burning ur¬
That was strange, he thought. gency he felt.
He groped for an explanation, tried Once Dunn came across a uni¬
fumblingly to fit together the jig¬ formed patrolman and tried to
saw pieces of memory that tum¬ speak to him. But neither his
bled through his mind. clutching hands nor his shouts were
There was a body in a bed, the noticed. He continued on in de¬
body of a young man with tousled spair. He felt lost and alone. A bit¬
brown hair—a body which seemed ter sense of defeat, of utter hope¬
queerly to belong to him, yet which lessness, weighted his mind.
was separated from him. There was People continued to pass through
the face of a man, a sharp, evil face him, but now he accepted it as a
with high cheekbones and slanting matter of course. He did not exist
102 MYSTIC

for them. He was a mere wraith, an


inarticulate, intangible nothing¬
ness.
When abruptly he came . into
solid contact with one of the hurry¬
ing figures he was completely stun¬
ned with surprise.
“Oh!” a soft voice said.
Dunn found himself staring down
at a slim, pretty girl with ash-
blonde hair and gray eyes. Her
oval face seemed to reflect his own
amazement.
“Why, you’re an astral!” she ex¬
claimed.
“Yes, that’s it—an astral,” Dunn
blurted. The word somehow made
WHAT DOES THE FUTURE a few of the jigsaw pieces click to¬
gether in his mind. The urgency in
HOLD FOR YOU?
him flamed higher.
The girl was studying him puz-
zledly. “You seem to understand—
‘74/iteA about being an astral, I mean,” she
said. “Most of them don’t.”
F0RTUNE-TELL5NG CARDS Dunn nodded, only half aware
of her words. “I thought I was all
alone here. I’d given up all hope
of ever finding anyone I could talk
to.”
The girl smiled. She had a wide
O^zden, ^fomf full mouth and even white teeth.
LIMITED SUPPLY ON HAND Her smile was pleasant to watch.
Only $1.50 Postpaid “I felt that way at first,” she ad¬
mitted. “But we’re not alone here.
You have some surprises coming.”
Dunn caught at her arms and
shook them a little. “If there are
others here—others like us—I’ve
got to talk to them! There’s some¬
thing I have to tell them. It’s ter¬
ribly important. There’s a man, you
City and State. see, an astral—a spy. I’ve got to
THE ASTRAL EXILE 103

warn people about him. He—” Dunn nodded, interested despite


Dunn released the girl and press¬ the nagging urgency within him. “I
ed his hands against his head. His guess the astrals have their job cut
face twisted as he nade a frantic out for them, all right.”
effort to fit more of the jigsaw “They have,” the girl assured
pieces together in his mind. him. “The biggest job is finding
“I can’t seem to remember,” he new arrivals and fitting them into
groaned. “It’s all there—but I can’t things. Most astrals serve as guides
get hold of it. He did something to or teachers. The guides patrol hos¬
me . . . something that made me pitals, battlefields and other places.
forget.” They bring arrivals to astral aid
“I think I can help you,” the girl stations and others take up from
said, her small face concerned. there. I, for instance, was brought
“There’s an astral aid station not from a hospital.”
far from here. The people there “I see,” Dunn muttered. He
will have some idea of what to do.” glanced at the girl, liking what he
“Astral aid station?” Dunn saw and for this very reason feel¬
echoed as the girl took his arm and ing a pang of regret. “Then you—
set off up the street. “What’s that?” your physical body—died?”
“Sort of a public information bu¬ She shook her ash-blonde curls
reau and receiving center all roll¬ and laughed a little. “That’s the
ed into one,” she explained. “What funny thing about it. I was in an
is called the astral plane is quite auto accident—not seriously dam-
well organized, you see. There are
institutions, a government, laws. W ANTED!
Things actually aren’t much differ¬ True Mystic Adventures
ent from what we’ve always known. MYSTIC Magazine will pay cash for your
“But there are certain problems experience, for publication in its TRUE
here. People arrive who refuse to MYSTIC ADVENTURES department.
believe they have become astrals
and keep trying to return to their
previous existence. They have to
be found and educated. Others ar¬
rive in a psychopathic state from
the shock and pain of accidents
or fatal wounds on the battlefield.
They have to be given special psy¬ ASTRAL PROJECTION
chiatric treatment. Many who ar¬ m ASTRAL PROJEC-
rive are even quite unconscious. In
fact, those who reach here as con¬
scious and sane as you are the ex¬ THE BOOK EXCHANGE
ception rather than the rule.” 2643 N. 33rd SJ. Philadelphia 32, Pa.
104 MYSTIC.

/ \ aged except for a brain concussion,


FAIRY CROSSES it seems. My body’s in a coma. A
couple of astral doctors are work¬
We now^ have a limited supply of
ing on it—or, more exactly, work¬
charm"6 ever 6 offered!" “strange ° cross¬
shaped stones which are found in a ing on the doctors who are working
on it.”
Dunn peered at her questioning-
ly and she explained, “You see, as¬
trals play a bigger part in affairs
on the physical plane than anyone
there realizes. They watch over
things. They guide and help—
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THE ASTRAL EXILE 105

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Dunn listened in fascination,
glancing frequently at the girl’s
solemn face. Her gray eyes were
intent on her words.
“Knowing all this has changed
me,” she went on. “I don’t think
I’ll ever be the same again if I
manage to ... to get back. And
if I remember ...
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“But the most important thing
I’ve learned is that people are not
alone, whether they are physical
or astral—two sides of the same
coin, really. They do not exist com¬
pletely by themselves, like chil¬
dren without parents. They are
not neglected, not left to work
out their destiny according to a
blind, hit or miss system. Every¬
one belongs to a great partner¬
ship—a great co-operative. No¬
PENTAGRAM body walks alone.”
Nobody walks alone . . . no¬
body walks alone. The girl’s
words rang like music in Dunn’s
mind. Their message gave him a
warm, exultant feeling. He had
felt horribly alone, lost, ma¬
rooned, shut away.
The girl was studying him.
“How much have you . . . forgot¬
ten?” she asked. “Do you remem¬
ber your name? Mine is Alicia
Taylor.”
Dunn made a frowning effort
at recollection, but the memory
he sought eluded him. All he ob¬
tained was the image of the man
with the high cheekbones and
slanting eyes. He felt a new surge
of the urgency connected with that
face.
He shook his head at Alicia.
“I can’t recall my name—but I
do remember some things.” He de¬
scribed the man with the slanting
eyes. “He did something to me—
something that made me forget.
I know he’s a spy and that I have
to warn the authorities about
THE ASTRAL EXILE 107

him.”
“Those at the station may be
able to help you,” Alicia said.
“We’re almost there.”
They reached a tall office build¬
ing and Alicia led the way through
the glass entrance doors. They
passed impalpably through a
crowd of business men and office
workers emerging from an eleva¬
tor. Alicia smiled impishly and
beckoned Dunn into the car.
“This isn’t necessary—but it’s
what I call carrying on in the
old tradition,” she said. “We get BROWN LANDONE AT 98 YEARS
off at the fifth floor—even if the
car doesn’t stop there.”
GIVEN!
It didn’t, but as it approached
the specified floor Alicia pulled TRANSFORMATION
abruptly at Dunn’s arm. With¬ OF YOUR LIFE
out any sensation of shock or mo¬ IN 24 HOURS!
mentum he found himself in a
long hall. Alicia led him to a pair
of glass doors that bore the legend
“North American Information
Bureau.”
“This suite of offices is leased
by a group of psychics,” Alicia
remarked. “It’s the busiest place
in the whole building, but the
physical people here don’t know
that.”
They entered a crowded recep¬
tion room. All those present were
astrals, Durin saw. Alicia spoke
to a woman at a desk, describing
Dunn as “a special case.” A short
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108 MYSTIC

there was a spiritual quality about


Bronson that showed he was far
removed from commercial mat¬
ters.
Bronson listened with keen¬
eyed interest as Dunn told him
of his fragmentary yet disturbing
and urgent memories. When Dunn
had finished he nodded slowly.
“It appears that you were sub¬
jected to a psychic assault by the
man you describe,” Bronson told
Dunn. “This evidently happened
because you had discovered him
to be a spy. It argues a high degree
Ask it any question. Turn it over and of psychic development iri his
read the answer. case, but the fact that you with-"
FUN! stood his assault so well indicates
that you have a great deal of na¬
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to restore your memories in full.
City.Zone.Stale. I don’t think that will be difficult
Our psychiatrists know consider¬
ably more about the mind than
THE ASTRAL EXILE 109

those on the physical plane, since PSYCHIC MAGAZINES


extrasensory perception works
without hindrance here. In addi¬
tion, our mental experts can use
certain energies that generally
are not available on the physical
plane. These energies accomplish
the so-called miracle cures of psy¬
chic healers . . . We’ll begin at
once!”
Dunn learned shortly that
things could move with bewil¬
dering speed in the astral world.
He was turned over to two psy¬
chiatrists named Kraus and Ste¬
phens, who examined and ques¬
tioned him at length.
Dunn then allowed Kraus to
place him in a trance and
it seemed to him while in this
state that he and the two psy¬
chiatrists ' moved through his
mind, flashing from scene to scene,
each as vivid and real as an ac¬
tual experience.
Suddenly he stood in a familiar
room. A lean, saturnine man
faced him, a man with high cheek¬
bones and slanting eyes. Behind
him stood two other men. On a
bed across the room lay the body
of a young man with
brown hair—himself, Dunn
lized.
The saturnine man abru
extended his arms and
Dunn was aware of p
knowledge. The scene
"teWVZ nI; s’mu
Other scenes followed in except °any T
the man with the slantin
was present, speaking,
smiling in mockery. Then ]
110 MYSTIC

found himself drinking with a dose of his own medicine.”


stocky man with sandy hair cut Bronson nodded his understand¬
close to his head. Halleck, Dunn ing. “You’ll need special training
remembered, and he knew that for the task ahead of you. The
Halleck’s body was alienly ten¬ unusual psychic strength which
anted. you possess will have to be de¬
Scene followed scene. It seemed veloped.”
to Dunn that he was moving back “Let’s get started, then!” Dunn
to his very childhood and even said.
beyond that to an existence he Dunn went—to school. Not
could not quite comprehend. And many years before, when attend¬
then he was flashing back and ing college and faced with the
there was light where there had approach of examinations, he had
been darkness, a knowing where often wished it were possible
there had been a forgetting. He somehow to compress into a few
awoke—and remembered. days or weeks the studies of an
Dunn reported back to Bron¬ entire year. He found that on the
son, who listened with increasing astral plane it was quite possible.
gravity to the story Dunn told Time here—or rather the aware¬
him out of his returned memories. ness of it—was different.
“The situation is even more He learned amazing things
serious than I thought it was!” about the mind and electromag¬
Bronson exclaimed. “We must netic effects. The relationship be¬
take immediate action against tween electromagnetic effects and
this man Borchov. What he’s gravitational effects already had
planning to do will destroy every¬ been shown by one of the fore¬
thing which we on the astral most scientists on the earthly
plane have been working for.” plane. It now appeared, Dunn
Bronson leaned forward, his found, that there was a relation¬
face intense. “You’re the key to ship between these effects and
the whole thing,” he told Dunn. the mind, that all were merely
“I believe that in the final analy¬ different manifestations of a sin¬
sis the success or failure of our gle, continuous field flowing like
efforts against Borchov will de¬ a mighty river through space-
pend on you. That’s because he is time. The effects operated to pro¬
using your physical body and only duce mind—and mind in turn
you can obtain certain results operated to produce the effects,
where your own body is con¬ v Dunn learned mentally to ma¬
cerned.” nipulate small objects and to
“I’ll do anything,” Dunn said cause rapping noises—what on
grimly. “There’s nothing I’d like the physical plane were called
better than to give Borchov a (Continued on page 112)
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112 MYSTIC

poltergeist phenomena. He pro¬ ing impatiently. “Congratula¬


gressed in his mental operations tions!” he said when Dunn re¬
until he could hurl huge rocks ported to him. “Now we can go
hundreds of feet into the air and into action. Everything is ready.
shatter them with a single bolt All our plans are laid. I’ve had
of energy. investigators carefully scouting
He spent almost all his leisure out conditions at Elm Center. As
time with Alicia. The girl was far as they could tell without risk¬
going to school too, though for a ing detection, Borchov seems not
different purpose. They took long to be up to anything unusual. It’s
walks through parks. They at¬ difficult to say just how highly
tended concerts or visited movie developed his extrasensory facul¬
theatres. In this and other ways ties are, of course. But we’ve
Dunn was reminded that life on learned enough about his habits
the astral plane was not essen¬ to have been able to calculate the
tially different from the life he exact moment to strike.”
had always known. He heard cas¬ “I’m ready,” Dunn said.
ual remarks about other, higher Zero hour ... With Bronson and
planes, but it seemed that only a a group of other astrals Dunn
few highly developed astrals pos¬ flashed through space. The sprawl¬
sessed detailed information about ing structures of Elm Center ap¬
these. peared through the night. When
Dunn felt that an ominous shad¬ the darkened dormitory loomed
ow lay over his jaunts with Ali¬ up in the shadows the party began
cia. He had no assurance that he separating to take up pre-assigned
would succeed in his efforts positions.
against Borchov and the thought “It’s in your hands from here
of defeat weighed heavily on his on in,” Bronson told Dunn. “Good'
mind. For among the conse¬ luck!”
quences of defeat he now saw not They shook hands briefly and
only a kind of death for himself— Dunn, feeling a sudden hard- knot
a mental devastation which even of tension within him, moved for¬
experts like Kraus and Stephens ward into the building. The
could not repair—but also separa¬ hall leading to his room appeared
tion from Alicia. around him. He moved more slow¬
Dunn reached a crucial point ly now, tautly alert.
in his training. His instructors A heavy, crouching stillness
hurled the equivalents of light¬ Jay over the hall. Nothing moved
ning bolts at him—and he turned under the wide-spaced ceiling
• them asidfe. He . . . graduated. lights.
His graduation was something Dunn crept up to the door of
for which Bronson had been wait¬ (Continued on page 114)
THE ASTRAL EXILE 113
114 MYSTIC

his room. Beyond it was his body fenses? These told me that
-—and Borchov. The stillness held. strange astrals were carefully ob¬
Lips tightening against his teeth, serving my activities. Therefore
Dunn melted through the door. I have made certain preparations.
A giant fist smashed at him. He Observe!”
went rolling across the floor. Now Dunn discovered exactly
With a frantic rallying of the what was wrong. The body in. the
strength that had been trained bed was wired lightly at head,
into him, Dunn threw off his wrists and ankles to make what
shock. As he scrambled to his appeared to be an electrical * cir¬
knees he saw Borchov poised cat¬ cuit The wires led to two boxes
like beside the bed. Dunn saw beside the bed — one evidently a
that his pa jama-clad body lay in battery of some sort.
it—and he sensed that something Borchov pointed to the other
was frightfully wrong. box. “This, my so persistent
“Fool!” Borchov spat. “Did you young friend, contains enough
not think that I would take certain dynamite to blow your body, as
precautions—erect certain de¬ (Continued on page 116)

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well as this entire building, to attempted. For a moment his


atoms! I have set up the electrical attention would be diverted both
circuit in such a way as to re¬ from Dunn and his physical shell.
spond tp certain energies which The instant momentary blank¬
I can generate in an instant.” ness came into Borchov’s black
Strangely, in that crucial mo¬ eyes to announce that his atten¬
ment, Dunn relaxed. He repressed tion had shifted, Dunn put his
an impulse to smile. Borchov, he newly acquired powers into ef¬
realized abruptly, had made a ser¬ fect. He tore loose the electrical
ious miscalculation. connections from the body in the
The Pan-Asian agent had con¬ bed.
sidered Dunn’s body to be the Borchov sensed the action and
focal point of the activities he was instantly alert. Despite his
had discovered. He interpreted surprise he retaliated with fur¬
Dunn’s return as an attempt to ious speed. He smashed at Dunn
reclaim his physical form—un¬ with a club of force.
aware that actually Dunn was Dunn sent it glancing harm¬
playing for a far greater stake, lessly aside. Amazement and rage
one for which he was willing to flickered over Borchov’s sharp
sacrifice his body if necessary. features. Gathering himself for a
Knowing his advantage, Dunn violent effort, he hurled a bolt of
acted. “Wait!” he told Borchov, shattering energy. Dunn turned
glancing with pretended fear at it aside—but with dazzling swift¬
the bed. “Don’t do anything hasty. ness another flashed at him. He
Let’s talk this over. Maybe we could not act quickly enough to
can strike a bargain.” keep from absorbing part of its
Borchov smiled thinly. “Per¬ impact. He went sprawling, his
haps. But first I suggest that you mind filled with the clangor of
advise your astral friends to great bells.
withdraw.” Borchov laughed wildly, in
“All right,” Dunn said. He sheer relief at what to him ap¬
lifted his voice in a call to Bron¬ peared proof of his superior
son and the others. Quickly he strength. The fleeting respite was
explained the situation and told all Dunn needed. He gathered
of Borchov’s demand. himself for a supreme effort—
“We’ll clear out, then,” Bron¬ His bolt hurled Borchov from
son called back. “You’re on your his feet. He pressed his advantage,
own.” as he had been trained to do,
Dunn tensed. He knew that throwing bolt after punishing
Borchov would be following the bolt. He beat down Borchov’s de¬
retreat of the other astrals to fenses layer by layer, then went
make certain that no trickery was (Continued on page 118)
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MYSTIC

to work with the equivalent of his “There’s something I have to do


hands. He pummeled, battered, first.”
hammered. A red haze hung over After a rest Dunn appeared at
his mind. In that haze the mem¬ Bronson’s office in the North Amer¬
ory of the pain and torment he ican Information Bureau. Bron¬
had suffered at Borchov’s hands son grinned.
was violently aliva. “Ive got a lot of news for you,
And then he felt himself be¬ Paul. While you were laying down
ing pulled away from the limp on the job, we’ve been busy.”
form beneath him. As from a “How is Borchov?” Dunn asked.
distance he heard Bronson’s voice. “A sadder and wiser man. We’ve
“That’s enough, Paul—enough! questioned him thoroughly and
It’s all over. You’ve done a grand have obtained details of the whole
job—but save something of Bor- scheme. Our security men have
chov for us.” taken over now and there’s noth¬
Dunn stood up, realizing ab¬ ing more to worry about. Borchov
ruptly that he was weak and shak¬ will receive extensive therapy to
en, spent. Despite the fury of the make him over into a useful as¬
astral struggle, nothing of it ap¬ tral citizen. We need abilities like
peared to have penetrated to the his, you know. He won’t make
physical plane. The dormitory any further trouble because,
still was wrapped in night silence. strangely enough, for all he knew,
“We didn’t go very far when he didn’t know just how well or¬
we left here,” Bronson was say¬ ganized we were. He didn’t want
ing. “As soon as we saw that you to risk discovery by exploring.”
had tricked Borchov and had Dunn was puzzled. “You mean
gone to work on him, we started he can’t return to the physical
back. Caught a couple of his plane?”
friends, incidently, when they Bronson shook his head. “He
came rushing to his help.” caught a fever in Tibet. His body
Bronson gestured and Dunn was weakened by asceticism and
glanced across the room at the couldn’t fight it off. Shevkin can’t
sullen faces of Radek and Shev- return either, but Radek can. He’ll
kin, who were being guarded by be a changed man, though.”
several of Bronson’s men. Bronson made a sweeping mo¬
One of the members of the tion. “I said I had a lot of news.
group, a physician, approached Item one is that we’ve located
Dunn. “You can take over your your friend Halleck at an astral
body at once, if you want to. I aid station in another city. He
checked and -there’s no psychic was found wandering in a coma.
damage or physical deterioration.” He’s being given therapy now
“Not right away,” Dunn said. and will be returned to his body,
THE ASTRAL EXILE 119

not too much the worse for wear. “Alicia is item two,” Bronson,
He won’t know what happened said. ‘While we were taking ac¬
to him—and I feel that’s best, tion against Borchov the astral
after all. In fact, Paul, I feel it doctors who were working on her
would be wise if you returned body finally managed to get
not knowing everything that hap¬ through. The blood clot has been
pened, everything you learned.” removed—and she’s gone back.
“What do you mean?” Dunn You are all she’ll remember of
asked in sudden apprehension. what she experienced here.”
“It’s important for you to go Dunn was dismayed. “But I
back. You need to obtain certain don’t know where to find her! I
experience that will be valuable was going to ask her what hos¬
here . .. later. But to get this ex¬ pital she was at—physically, I
perience you’ll have to be a normal mean, but now ...”
person, lead a normal life. You Bronson grinned broadly. “Oh,
couldn’t do that knowing what you she told me that before she left.
know now.” Frankly, she made me promise
“I guess you’re right,” Dunn to be sure to let you know.”
muttered. He stiffened. “But what “Then get my exit papers
about Alicia? I can’t just leave ready,” Dunn said. “I’ve got a
her!” date!”

COMING in the NEXT ISSUE


A spine-chilling novelette based on the theory that an invasion
of demons from the nether regions can become a psychic reality!

INVASION of the DARK ONES


By
Hal Annas

THE DEVIL'S EMPIRE


By Roy Palmer
DON'T MISS THE JANUARY ISSUE - OUT NOV. 1st.
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-SEARCHING-
FOR THE ELIXIR OF LIFE
bij (Drew Jffmes

T HE key to premature old age


itself exists in the rare new
Paint Company has revealed that
its chemists have made great prog¬
drug-hormones, Cortisone and ress in developing a simplified
ACTH, which physicians so far method of producing the precious
know to be a remarkable cure for drug from soy beans.
arthritis, some forms of heart dis¬ Cortisone is not a cure but must
ease, hardening of the arteries and be given in daily injections. It is
other diseases associated with grow¬ being distributed by a special com¬
ing older. mittee to qualified institutions
A world-wide hunt is underway purely for research purposes. It is
for new sources of these revolu¬ made from ox bile and is so ex¬
tionary remedies which may change tremely rare that the Merck Com¬
the whole future and outlook of pany is producing only about 200
mankind. So far only enough of grams a month, which is enough to
these miracle drugs is available to treat only a few persons.
treat a few hundred persons. To Another substance is ACTH,
find more, men are searching into made from the pituitary gland of
strange places of the world and hogs. It produces the same effect
are undertaking extensive chemical as cortisone by stimulating the pa¬
and biological research. tient’s adrenal glands to produce
A U. S. Government expedition cortisone. ACTH is being isolated
is underway to Africa to bring by a new process developed by
back seeds of a plant known as Armour & Co., Chicago. Total pro¬
strophantus sarmentosus, which is duction is only about 60 pounds
a potentially unlimited source of per year, and to produce that much
the raw material for cortisone. The requires pituitary glands of 24,000,-
plant yields a material whose 000 slaughtered hogs.
chemical configuration has been Production of Sarmentogenim
found thus far only in the adrenal from the sarmentosus seeds could
glands of animals. eliminate this costly labor. Sarmen-
On another front, the Glidden togenin has a chemical structure
122
SEARCHING FOR THE ELIXIR OF LIFE 123

much nearer to cortisone than the


bile acid from which it is produced
today. It takes 37 chemical steps to
transform the bile acid into corti¬
sone, but only 20 to transform Sar-
mentogenin into synthetic corti-

It is estimated that it would re¬


quire one ton of sarmentosus seeds
to maintain an arthritic person for
one year. Heavy production of the
seeds could become an enormously
profitable industry for tropical
countries, since there are an esti¬
mated 7,000,000 arthritics in the
United States today.
When cortisone is available in
substantial quantities, the long-
sought search for a Foundation of
Youth may be at last achieved.
Though it will not guarantee im¬
mortality, it is certain to keep hu¬
man beings healthy and well far
beyond the periods when they ordi¬
narily wither and die.
THE END NOTE: SUCCESS can be obtained de¬
liberately thru the basic discoveries of
the Eidetic Foundation. Classes now

RELIGION and
The New Psychology

E VENTURE BOOKSHOP
O N October 10, 1951 your edi¬
tor began writing a series of
5. The new series of atom bomb
tests, and the resulting bad
prophecies received from a weather, and the discussion
source which, for lack of a better about it that even went as far
explanation, he called “the man as a proposed congressional
from tomorrow,” an imaginary per¬ investigation.
sonage living far in our future. 6. The severe earthquakes in
What he actually did was to sit California and in other parts
down and write whatever came to of the world. Special emphasis
mind, with little regard as to on severe tornado and cyclon¬
whether it was reasonable or not. ic disaster.
The following is a list of these 7. Devising of a new type atomic
prpphecies which came true, as weapon (the atomic cannon).
culled from the articles written for 8. Development of actual atomic
more than a year afterward: power plants in this country.
1. The tremendous snowfalls of 9. The discovery that the Earth
the winter of 1951-52, which has a faint ring around it, like
set new records; especially in Saturn.
far southern states. 10. The mysterious green fireballs
2. Famine in India; with the in the southwest, and the
U. S. offering wheat, but mak¬ great increase in “spaceship”
ing a political mess of the ar¬ and “saucer” sightings.
gument over whether or not 11. The use of radioactives in pre¬
it should be sent, thereby giv¬ ventative medicine and re¬
ing the Communist line a search into the cause of dis¬
boost. eases rather than just into
3. The excess of rain in response their cure.
to attempts to make it rain, 12. Failure of the Korean peace
and the resulting arguments. conferences, and their recess.
4. Specific mention of the record- 13. Revolt in Germany in 1953.
breaking snowfalls in Pitts¬ 14. The worst hurricane in the
burgh, Cleveland, Chicago, North Sea in 500 years.
Kansas City. 15. Finding remnants of lost civil-
124
THE MAN FROM TOMORROW 125

izations (Atlantis) beneath “sense” that can penetrate the cur¬


the sea. tain of time? Is it what we like to
16. Food prices to hit an all-time call “hunches”? Certainly no such
high in 1952. thing as reason and logic were em¬
17. Our own magazine, OTHER ployed!
WORLDS, to be forced out of In this department, in coming
business due to the pressure of months, we will publish more of
business events. our predictions and also the pre¬
dictions of any of you readers who
18. The spending of ten million
care to stick your necks out. We
dollars by world governments
will select the most interesting, the
to listen to strange signals
strangest, and the most capable of
from space.
proving that something is operat¬
19. The dramatic deaths and ing here which is beyond the pres¬
purging of high Soviet offi¬ ent knowledge of science. What¬
cials, the rapid changes in ever happens, we will have fun do¬
Soviet inner circles that made ing it, and we predict, we will be
it impossible to predict future, very amazed at the’ strange ac¬
Russian acts, the inability of curacy we will encounter. So join
the world to make plans be¬ with us, and let’s see what The
cause of this doubt. The in¬ Man From Tomorrow has to say!
creasing incidence of rebellion Our prediction for this issue (the
and unrest in the satellite date of this writing is July 20,
countries, especially Poland
1953) is that there will be a se¬
and Czechoslovakia.
vere business recession, attended
20. The earthquake in San Fran¬ by great governmental agitation,
cisco. and a great hue and cry by Demo¬
21. Starvation in India in 1953 crat officials for Republican blame
worse than 1952. for the recession, plus a severe de¬
All of these predictions came terioration in popularity among the
true. Many others did not. Many people of the new administration,
more have yet to be decided, but, and particularly of President Ei¬
on the record, many of them will senhower. The debt limit will be
occur. The percentage of. hits is raised, and tax cuts will be negligi¬
very high, especially among those ble, if not non-existent. Many small
“wild guesses” such as the now businesses will fail. Biggest single
famous North Sea hurricane and factor in the recession will be a
flood, the green fireballs, the earth¬ buying strike.
quakes in specific localities, the Our advice—don’t stick your
Earth’s ring, the record snowfalls. neck out too far on credit. The “big
How were these predictions made? boys” will lop off your head if you
Do all of us possess a strange do!
MYSTERY IN THE NEWS...
S TRANGE things are happen¬
ing every day in the world.
sociability too far, have asked
Sheriff Fred Preston if it would be
Here are some of the high¬ okay to blaze away at the intruders
lights: next time they drop in.
* * * “No,” said the Sheriff, “but I’ll
Out at Brush Creek, California, inform the Air Force.”
on last May 20 two gold miners Which will be the last we’ll hear
were minding their own business of that!
operating their small gold mine.
The mine is actually near Marble Speaking of visitors, Mrs. Hilda
Creek where Jordan Creek empties Walker of Houston, Texas has been
into it. The miners, ' John Van visited by a bat-man. It happened
Allen and John Q. Black, were on May 18. Mrs. Walker and Judy
naturally perturbed when a strange Meyer, a fourteen-year-old girl,
aerial vehicle landed on a sand bar, were sitting on the porch when a
balanced itself on a tri-legged land¬ huge shadow crossed the lawn.
ing gear, and proceeded to disgorge Looking up into a pecan tree, they
a little man wearing what they saw the figure of. a man about 6V2
termed a “knee-length parka.” Ob¬ feet tall with wings like a bat. He
viously his mission was a simple was dressed in gray or black tight-
one, for he merely scooped up a fitting clothes, and he remained in
pail of water and handed it to a the tree about 30 seconds. He was
companion inside the weird air¬ surrounded by a strange glow of
craft. yellow light. Then the light died
Then, while Allen and Black out, and little Judy screamed. At
watched in amazement, the little once there was a loud “swoosh”
man reentered his seven-foot by and there was a white flash like a
four-foot discus-shaped craft and it torpedo-shaped object over the
took off, its landing gear retracting housetops across the street. It made
as it went. off like a jet.
The gold miners investigated Another witness was Howard
and found that the landing gear Phillips, 33, a tool plant inspector.
had left marks on the sand the size “I saw it,” he said.
of elephant tracks.
On June 20, the craft returned, May 25, 1953, Chicago. Thomas
went through the same routine. Grace, steamfitter, was using a
Miners Allen and Black, having a pneumatic drill eleven stories
feeling that the visit may become a above the ground. Suddenly it
monthly affair, which is carrying “kicked” and threw him into the
126
MYSTERY IN THE NEWS 127

air. Down came Thomas, an ex¬ he “couldn’t stand it anymore.” So


paratrooper, but this time minus William shot and killed him and
a parachute. He broke a rib. tossed the body into a well. Said
* * * the Marine,“Cyr suffered from hal¬
Mrs. A. M. Kornahrens and Miss lucinations. He saw flying ghosts
Shirley McAdams of Boise, Idaho and walking corpses.”
Saw a greenish ball of flame pro¬ Seems to us the cure was worse
ceed through the sky about 9 p.m. than the ailment!
on May 21. Their story was sup¬ * * *
ported by W. H. Smith, a taxi- The August issue of The Read¬
driver. In spite of Dr. Donald er’s Digest contained a story that
Menzel, prominent authority, the was rather late in coming to light,
strange balls are still there! since the events around which it
centers took place in the days fol¬
Once again it’s Kenneth Arnold, lowing February 6, 1951. The
this time with “electrified rain.” event was the wreck of the Jersey-
Says Mr. Arnold, also of Boise, “I shore commuter train, The Broker,
was driving along Mountain Home in which 85 were killed and 500
highway when it began to rain. I injured.
noticed that each drop that hit Among the injured was Robert
the car aerial created static. Then Stout. It was a possible skull frac¬
I noticed that a group of cattle in ture, and his condition was so criti¬
a field were jumping here and cal that his life was despaired of.
there as if they were being shocked After a few days, an emergency
by the rain.” head operation was decided upon,
Just “minor-league” lightning, the chances for success almost neg¬
Ken. A new invention of the “ex¬ ligible.
plainers of things that can’t be ex¬ At the Sunday services of the
plained.” Most of us just haven’t Rev. Mr. Squire, pastor for the
noticed that “rain static” is old Stout family, a moment of prayer
stuff. was called, and while the congrega¬
Or is it? How about it, readers? tion concentrated, the Rev. Mr.
Your cows been doing any jump¬ Squire solemnly requested that the
ing in the rain lately? healing power of God accompany
* * * them in spirit to the Perth Amboy
Don’t ever tell ghost stories to a General Hospital. “Lay your hand
Marine! Joseph Welford Cyr, on Robert Stout and heal him!”
rancher about 15 miles northwest prayed the Rev. Mr. Squire.
of Lancaster, California, regaled At precisely that instant Robert
AWOL William Marion Lawson Stout came out of his coma, and a
of Campbell, California with “weird specialist canceled the operation as
stories of the supernatural” until unnecessary.
The SEANCE CIRCLE... Letters from the llndectd

Dear Mr. Palmer: Dear Ray:


True now says Scully’s book is I just received a letter from
not true. But I saw a picture of a Walter Wiers telling of your
“little man” between two officers, new magazine Mystic. I should
handcuffed to them. The mystery like to be one of your first subscrib¬
is as deep as ever. How about the ers. Please bill me for a one year
“monster” in West Virginia, and subscription. If it is better than
the case at West Palm Beach? Lots FATE, I’ll be hooked for life.
of material for a book. I’ve followed your words of wis¬
L. F. Heasley, dom since the “pre-Shaver” days.
Dorr, Mich. Just a silent admirer. I try to read
Scully still says it’s true. Take between the lines and get your
your choice. As for the little man message — I get most of the ideas.
picture, we saw that too, and it’s You are, in your unusual way, do¬
pretty much a phoney. Any good ing a great thing for humanity —
photographer can tell you why. No¬ seriously. More power to you.
body has explained the “monster,” Carl McDougal,
and the case of the scoutmaster Lynwood, Calif.
being burned by saucer people Walter is one of MYSTIC’S
hasn’t been shaken either. Certain¬ really big supporters, and we owe a
ly is a mystery! And no doubt lot to him. And you are our first'
plenty of books will be written. subscriber! We certainly hope
As a matter of fact, we are in the we’ve “hooked” you for life, as we
process of compiling one of our intend to do our best. As for our
own! “words of wisdom” you certainly
* * * flatter us. Better save that until
Dear Ray: you see how we make out!
News has reached me via the And now, how about you readers
grapevine that you are planning a getting in on the Circle and drop¬
new magazine in the mystic field. ping us a line? We think this letter
I am anxiously waiting for the first department can be vastly interest¬
issue, as I know, that anything you ing, and result in some very in¬
put out will be good. tense discussions that will do a lot
Marion Gonzales, to clear the air. And it’s your op¬
San Francisco, Calif. portunity to help us make MYS¬
Here it is, Marion! Hope we TIC the best magazine in the field!
lived up to your prediction! So, write!
128
IN
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Sounds like a eome-on line, does it? Weil, in a way it is, but that
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eye can see ? Do you believe he should think about his real future; open
his eyes to the unseen: realize his true nature?
Did you know that Mystic and Occult knowledge receives a slap in the
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Let’s show them, for once. No telling where it will end!

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130
COMING
of the

SAUCERS!
At last! The authentic story of the mys¬
terious sky objects that have shaken the
complacency of the world. On-the-spot an¬
swers to the top question of the century.

By the two men wh© know most about them!

KENNETH ARNOLD & RAY PALMER'S


DOCUMENTARY REPORT TO THE WORLD
An amazing array of factual evidence, gathered under incredible difficulties and
actual risk of life, shorn of the official "smog” that has hidden the truth from
the very outset. An incredible array of evidence —- the result of over four years
of investi gat ion.

The Only Book That Tells The

WHOLE TRUTH
AND NOTHING BUT THE TRUTH!
No trickery, no practical jokes, no "top secret”, no
"classification”! Here are the simple, unadorned,
dramatic facts. A documentary record of unimpeach¬
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PRIVATELY PRIMTED—NO CENSORSHIP I

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