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A Voyage to Arcturus by David Lindsay

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A VOYAGE TO ARCTURUS.

By David Lindsay

Contents:

1 The Seance 2 In the Street 3 Starkness 4 The Voice 5 The Night of Departure 6 Joiwind 7 Panawe 8 The Lusion Plain 9 Oceaxe 10 Tydomin 11 On Disscourn 12 Spadevil 13 The Wombflash Forest 14 Polecrab 15 Swaylone's Island 16 Leehallfae 17 Corpang 18 Haunte 19 Sullenbode 20 Barey 21 Muspel

Chapter 1. THE SEANCE

On a march evening, at eight o'clock, Backhouse, the medium--a fast-rising star in the psychic world--was ushered into the study at Prolands, the Hampstead residence of Montague Faull. The room was illuminated only by the light of a blazing fire. The host, eying him with indolent curiosity, got up, and the usual conventional greetings were exchanged. Having indicated an easy chair before the fire to his guest, the South American merchant sank back again into his own. The electric light was switched on. Faull's prominent, clear-cut features, metallic-looking skin, and general air of bored impassiveness, did not seem greatly to impress the medium, who was accustomed to regard men from a special angle. Backhouse, on the contrary, was a novelty to the merchant. As he tranquilly studied him through half closed lids and the smoke of a cigar, he wondered how this little, thickset person with the pointed beard contrived to remain so fresh and sane in appearance, in view of the morbid nature of his occupation.

"Do you smoke?" drawled Faull, by way of starting the Conversation. "No? Then will you take a drink?"

"Not at present, I thank you."

A pause.

"Everything is satisfactory? The materialisation will take place?"

"I see no reason to doubt it."

"That's good, for I would not like my guests to be disappointed. I have your check written out in my pocket."

"Afterward will do quite well."

"Nine o'clock was the time specified, I believe?"

"I fancy so."

The conversation continued to flag. Faull sprawled in his chair, and remained apathetic.

"Would you care to hear what arrangements I have made?"

"I am unaware that any are necessary, beyond chairs for your guests."

"I mean the decoration of the seance room, the music, and so forth."

Backhouse stared at his host. "But this is not a theatrical performance."

"That's correct. Perhaps I ought to explain.... There will be ladies present, and ladies, you know, are aesthetically inclined."

"In that case I have no objection. I only hope they will enjoy the performance to the end."


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