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Under The Lamp

Categories: Waking Hallucinations
Scary Books: The Book Of Dreams And Ghosts
: Andrew Lang

I had given a glass ball to a young lady, who believed that she could

play the "willing game" successfully without touching the person

"willed," and when the person did not even know that "willing" was

going on. This lady, Miss Baillie, had scarcely any success with the

ball. She lent it to Miss Leslie, who saw a large, square, old-

fashioned red sofa covered with muslin, which she found in the next

country house she
visited. Miss Baillie's brother, a young athlete

(at short odds for the amateur golf championship), laughed at these

experiments, took the ball into the study, and came back looking "gey

gash". He admitted that he had seen a vision, somebody he knew "under

a lamp". He would discover during the week whether he saw right or

not. This was at 5.30 on a Sunday afternoon. On Tuesday, Mr. Baillie

was at a dance in a town some forty miles from his home, and met a

Miss Preston. "On Sunday," he said, "about half-past five you were

sitting under a standard lamp in a dress I never saw you wear, a blue

blouse with lace over the shoulders, pouring out tea for a man in blue

serge, whose back was towards me, so that I only saw the tip of his


"Why, the blinds must have been up," said Miss Preston.

"I was at Dulby," said Mr. Baillie, as he undeniably was. {60a}

This is not a difficult exercise in belief. Miss Preston was not

unlikely to be at tea at tea-time.

Nor is the following very hard.