The Green Mouse Stirs
"I've been waiting half an hour for
you," observed Smith, dryly, as Beekman Brown appeared at the subway
station, suitcase in hand.
"It was a most extraordinary
thing that detained me," said Brown, laughing, and edging his way
into the ticket line behind his friend where he could talk to him
across his shoulder; "I was just leaving the office, Smithy, when
Snuyder came in with a card."
"Oh, all right--of
"No, it was not a client;
I must be honest with you."
"Then you had a terrible
cheek to keep me here waiting."
"It was a girl," said
Smith cast a cold glance
back at him over his left shoulder.
"What kind of a girl?"
"A most extraordinary
girl. She came on--on a matter----"
"Was it business or
"Not exactly business."
but it wasn't that----
"Oh, it was not that
which kept you talking to her half an hour while I've sat suffocating
in this accursed subway!"
"No, Smith; her undeniably
attractive features and her--ah--winning personality had nothing
whatever to do with it. Buy the tickets and I'll tell you all about
Smith bought two tickets.
A north bound train roared into the station. The young men stepped
aboard, seated themselves, depositing their suitcases at their feet.
"Now what about that
winning-looker who really didn't interest you?" suggested Smith
in tones made slightly acid by memory of his half hour waiting.
"Smith, it was a most
unusual episode. I was just leaving the office to keep my appointment
with you when Snuyder came in with a card----"
"You've said that already."
"But I didn't tell
you what was on that card, did I?"
"I can guess."
"No, you can't. Her
name was not on the card. She was not an agent; she had nothing
to sell; she didn't want a position; she didn't ask for a subscription
to anything. And what do you suppose was on that card?"
"Well, what was on
the card, for the love of Mike?" snapped Smith. "I'll tell you.
The card seemed to be an ordinary visiting card; but down in one
corner was a tiny and beautifully drawn picture of a green mouse."
"Pea green.... Come,
now, Smith, if you were just leaving your office and your clerk
should come in, looking rather puzzled and silly, and should hand
you a card with nothing on it but a little green mouse, wouldn't
it give you pause?"
"I suppose so."
Brown removed his straw
hat, touched his handsome head with his handkerchief, and continued:
"I said to Snuyder:
'What the mischief is this?' He said: 'It's for you. And there's
an exceedingly pretty girl outside who expects you to receive her
for a few moments.' I said: 'But what has this card with a green
mouse on it got to do with that girl or with me?' Snuyder said he
didn't know and that I'd better ask her. So I looked at my watch
and I thought of you----"
"Yes, you did."
"I tell you I did.
Then I looked at the card with the green mouse on it.... And I want
to ask you frankly, Smith, what would you have done?"
"Oh, what you did,
I suppose," replied Smith, wearily. "Go on."
"I'm going. She entered----"
"She was tall and squeenly;
you probably forgot that," observed Smith in his most objectionable
"Probably not; she
was of medium height, as a detail of external interest. But, although
rather unusually attractive in a merely superficial and physical
sense, it was instantly evident from her speech and bearing, that,
in her, intellect dominated; her mind, Smithy, reigned serene, unsullied,
triumphant over matter."
Smith looked up in
amazement, but Brown, a reminiscent smile lighting his face, went
"She had a very winsome
manner--a way of speaking--so prettily in earnest, so grave. And
she looked squarely at me all the time----"
"So you contributed
to the Home for Unemployed Patagonians."
"Would you mind shutting
up?" asked Brown.
"Then try to listen
respectfully. She began by explaining the significance of that pea-green
mouse on the card. It seems, Smith, that there is a scientific society
called The Green Mouse, composed of a few people who have determined
to apply, practically, certain theories which they believe have
"Was she," inquired
Smith with misleading politeness, "what is known as an 'astrologist'?"
"She was not. She is
the president, I believe, of The Green Mouse Society. She explained
to me that it has been indisputably proven that the earth is not
only enveloped by those invisible electric currents which are now
used instead of wires to carry telegraphic messages, but that this
world of ours is also belted by countless psychic currents which
go whirling round the earth----"
kind of currents?"
"Which circle the earth?"
"Exactly. If you want
to send a wireless message you hitch on to a current, don't you?--or
you tap it--or something. Now, they have discovered that each one
of these numberless millions of psychic currents passes through
two, living, human entities of opposite sex; that, for example,
all you have got to do to communicate with the person who is on
the same psychical current that you are, is to
attune your subconscious self to a given intensity
and pitch, and it will be like communication by telephone, no matter
how far apart you are."
"Did she go to your
office to tell you that sort of--of--information?"
"Partly. She was perfectly
charming about it. She explained to me that all nature is divided
into predestined pairs, and that somewhere, at some time, either
here on earth or in some of the various future existences, this
predestined pair is certain to meet and complete the universal scheme
as it has been planned. Do you understand, Smithy?"
Smith sat silent and
reflective for a while, then:
"You say that her theory
is that everybody owns one of those psychic currents?"
"I am on a private
psychic current whirling around this globe?"
girl is at the other end?"
"Then if I could only
get hold of my end of the wire I could--ah--call her up?"
"I believe that's the
"And--she's for muh?"
"So they say."
"Is--is there any way
to get a look at her first?"
"You'd have to take
her anyway, sometime."
"But suppose I didn't
The two young men sat
laughing for a few moments, then Brown went on:
"You see, Smith, my
interview with her was such a curious episode that about all I did
was to listen to what she was saying, so I don't know how details
are worked out. She explained to me that The Green Mouse Society
has just been formed, not only for the purpose of psychical research,
but for applying practically and using commercially the discovery
of the psychic currents. That's what The
Green Mouse is trying to do: form itself into a company
and issue stocks and bonds----"
"Certainly. It sounds
like a madman's dream at first, but when you come to look into it--for
instance, think of the millions of clients such a company would
have. As example, a young man, ready for marriage, goes to The Green
Mouse and pays a fee. The Green Mouse sorts out, identifies, and
intercepts the young man's own particular current, hitches his subconscious
self to it, and zip!--he's at one
end of an invisible telephone and the only girl on
earth is at the other.... What's the matter with their making a
quick date for an introduction?"
Smith said slowly:
"Do you mean to tell me that any sane person came to you in your
office with a proposition to take stock in such an enterprise?"
"She did not even suggest
"What did she want,
"She wanted," said
Brown, "a perfectly normal, unimaginative business man who would
volunteer to permit The Green Mouse Society to sort out his psychic
current, attach him to it, and see what would happen."
"She wants to experiment
"So I understand."
"And--you're not going
to let her, are you?"
idiotic!" said Smith, warmly. "I don't believe in such things--you
don't, either--nobody does--but, all the same, you can't be perfectly
sure in these days what devilish sort of game you might be up against."
Brown smiled. "I told
her, very politely, that I found it quite impossible to believe
in such things; and she was awfully nice about it, and said it didn't
matter what I believed. It seems that my name was chosen by chance--they
opened the Telephone Directory at random and she, blindfolded, made
a pencil mark on the margin opposite one of the names on the page.
It happened to be my name. That's
"Wouldn't let her do
it!" said Smith, seriously.
"Why not, as long as
there's absolutely nothing in it? Besides, if it pleases her to
have a try why shouldn't she? Besides, I haven't the slightest intention
or desire to woo or wed anybody, and I'd like to see anybody make
"Do you mean to say
that you told her to go ahead?"
"Certainly," said Brown
serenely. "And she thanked me very prettily. She's well bred--exceptionally."
"Oh! Then what did
"We talked a little
"Well, for instance,
I mentioned that curiously-baffling sensation which comes over everybody
at times--the sudden conviction that everything that you say and
do has been said and done by you before--somewhere. Do you understand?"
"And she smiled and
said that such sensations were merely echoes from the invisible
psychic wire, and that repetitions from some previous incarnation
were not unusual, particularly when the other person through whom
the psychic current passed, was near by."
"You mean to say that
when a fellow has that queer feeling that it has all happened before,
the--the predestined girl is somewhere in your neighborhood?"
"That is what my pretty
informant told me."
"Who," asked Smith,
"is this pretty informant?"
"She asked permission
to withhold her name."
"Didn't she ask you
"No; she merely asked
for the use of my name as reference for future clients if The Green
Mouse Society was successful in my case."
"What did you say?"
Brown laughed. "I said
that if any individual or group of individuals could induce me,
within a year, to fall in love with and pay court to any living
specimen of human woman I'd cheerfully admit it from the house-
tops and take pleasure in recommending The Green Mouse to everybody
I knew who yet remained unmarried."
They both laughed.
"What rot we've been
talking," observed Smith, rising and picking up his suitcase. "Here's
our station, and we'd better hustle or we'll lose the boat. I wouldn't
miss that week-end party for the world!"
"Neither would I,"
said Beekman Brown.