Cover image for


Author: Vance Simonds
Published: 1963
Language: English
Wordcount: 7,257 / 30 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 69.7
LoC Category: PS
Downloads: 891
Added to site: 2010.02.02 26541

Suppose you really knew what everyone was feeling... suppose you had a surefire way of predicting public reaction. Wouldn't you wonder, sometimes, if it could backfire?

Show Excerpt

s room had been scientifically designed for sequestering agency people who had to give birth to slogans and such under deadline pressure. The walls were sound-proofed, the couch pulled out into a properly uncomfortable bed, and a refrigerator was stocked with snack makings. It was also served by dumbwaiter. Phones were banished, of course; as was 3-D and all other distraction--even windows. Visual motion was, however, provided by a giant clock. The only concessions to Ev were a special little hutch for the super-mongoose; and a bar, carefully regulated to make certain he never completely blotted out the hypothetical brainwave "network."

Cam did his best to pump Ev for the identity of his "Associates", but the old sack of iniquity was wise to his game. He'd rear back and squint at Cam like a Lebanese fruit vendor and thoughtfully pick his nose. "Like to know me confederates, is it?" he'd ask. Then, with a great show of candor: "Well, one of them is a sea creature, but I'll say no more than that. I know


Average Rating of 4 from 1 reviews: ****
Paulo Respighi

A rather dated story, with the United States of Eurmerica still fighting a cold war against the godless communists. The story concerns a group of four psychically connected people who approach an ad agency saying their highly developed empathy allows them to predict how consumers will react to ad campaigns. They try the talent out on a religious fanatic running for office, and sure enough, it works. Except . . . .

Good characterizations and some nice ideas help distract from the cold war stuff.

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