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difficulty; and, speaking by and large, your researcher is delighted if, 
out of a great mass of material, he can winnow an occasional bit which, 

with reasonable interpretation, can be considered air-tight. When he gets 
such a bit he publishes it in a Journal rather triumphantly.

Betty began talking to me quietly, fluently, with assured and intimate 
knowledge of our common experience and living. There was no "fishing" and 
no fumbling. That part of it became almost ridiculous, it was so easy for 

her where with usual "psychical research" it has been so difficult.

Here, in this first evening, she literally poured out a succession of 

these authentications. She mentioned not one, but dozens, of small events 
out of our past, of trivial facts in our mutual experience or 
surroundings, none of which could by any possibility be within Joan's 

knowledge. Many of them, indeed, were gone from my own memory, until 
Betty recalled them to me. And all of them--EXCEPT JUST ONE--clean-cut, 
air-tight, without need of interpretation. A dyed-in-the-wool psychic 

researcher would have gone mad with joy over such a demonstration, which 
would have furnished him enough material to have lasted him for the next 

seven years!

Darby was taking the notes. He has not my verbatim "shorthand," and 

confined them mostly to what he considered significant in what Betty was 
saving, which was why his script missed the "evidential." It sounded 
unimportant to him. I myself was so amazed--and excited--that it did not 

occur to me to write anything down. So most of it was lost, as far as 
record goes. That does not matter. Betty's purpose was merely to 
authenticate for us herself--and incidentally her command of Joan--in 

order to bespeak our attention to what was to follow.

That for me--and for Darby when afterward I explained to him the 

appositeness of what had sounded to him like chit chat--was done so 
thoroughly that from that evening on we could not doubt that we were 
hearing from Betty; and that Betty had something to say. Not without 

accusing our own plain common sense.

It would be possible to gather some of these scattered bits together, and 

the reader is certainly entitled to something beyond my simple statement. 
But such a compilation would be fragmentary, and in addition would depend 
largely on my own assurance of its factual character. Therefore I will 

not make that attempt. But fortunately there were three other incidents 
of "evidential," quite as brilliant and as detailed, involving others 
outside our little group of three, which DID get recorded. These I shall 

narrate--and that at last brings us back to Joan's outrageous purchase of 
the two Chinese boxes she did not want.

"Well!" Betty began with a chuckle,* "I did have a terrible time in town! 
No, not a terrible time--I had a lot of fun--but I had to work hard to 

get Joan to take the wrong bus so she would go to that store and see the 
truck with the gadget on it. I saw one in Chinatown ** once, but it cost 
seventy-five dollars, and this one was so cheap. You'll have to lend me 

the money for it, Stewt. I wanted something that Millicent *** had had in 
mind for a long time; and I wanted it for the color and the birds; but 
Joan bought the wrong one, so I had to make her buy another. Tell Mill IT 

IS FOR THE COLOR AND THE BIRDS. When we were little girls we used to be 
fond of watching certain birds."

* It may be as well to state here that all speeches quoted from any 
Invisible are verbatim unless otherwise stated. I have a shorthand 
adequate for that purpose.


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