Part 17: In which Alice deciphers subliminal messages and ventures into the great outdoors.
...oh... that was horrible... I felt like I was torn to pieces...
It's a mirror, not a stargate. Deep cleansing breaths.
Well, this must be the right mirror. Look at that backwards writing.
Given the trouble we went to getting here, I should hope it's the right door. Pity, though. I thought the actual font would be reversed, not just the letters.
Hm. Which door should I try first?
The Looking Glass House is actually an annoying maze. If you use the wrong door, you get sent back a room or three; sometimes you even wind up in front of this mirror again. Accidentally go through it, and you'll probably have to wait another game day to get back. So be careful and follow my lead.
All right. (For those wondering, this is my third day in Wonderland... which apparently has twelve-hour days.)
Use the door on the right.
Room 'ruof', eh?
Now take the door in the middle.
Room 'eerht'; I'm making progress. Oh, and there's someone here!
Might as well introduce yourself.
E-e-e-e-eek! It hurts! It hurts!
What! What hurts?
My brooch is loose and it's going to stick me, child.
Which would make her...
Her Imperial Highness, the White Queen.
Good to know, given the limitations of the engine.
Please don't scream like that. It hurts my ears!
Hush. If people knew I sounded like a locomotive whistle, they'd tie me to the front of a horrid engine.
Well, are you all right now?
I've done my crying already. Only vulgar people keep keep (sic) repeating themselves.
That's an unfortunate unfortunate typo.
Quiet, you. Excuse me, Your Majesty, but is there anything I can do to help?
No, I can--there, the brooch has stuck me. I'll give you my thanks now and you can give me the brooch later. If those nasty ferrets take it, you might be able to find it in the bank.
It is a cameo brooch of an absent-minded cupid shooting an arrow into a tree.
Odd. Pretty, though.
From here, you want to go through the mirror.
Well, all right...
Ah, room 'owt'. Which door do I take from here?
None of them; they all take you back to the very first room. (Or is that very last?)
You mean I have to climb the rope?
I suppose you could use the top hat...
No, at least with the rope I can hold on with my legs too.
Hurray, room 'eno'! And I can rest my arms while I look at this photograph.
It is a faded photograph of pawns serenading the Red Queen.
It's actually quite pretty. But too large to take with me. I suppose I'll just look out the window...
This... is one big birdbath.
You're telling me. It took me a while to stitch this image together.
That's your problem, I'm afraid. Mine is where to go from here. Let's see... that doorway to the left looks interesting. I'll use my parasol to reach it safely.
Oh, it's a garden! And what a large flower I see.
Ah choo. If you're pollinating, stay away.
What kind of flower is allergic to pollen?
No, no, please don't come any closer. You really do make me sneeze.
An interesting technical note here: the Commodore 64's sprites can only be one color, unless you halve their horizontal resolution, which gives you three. (And some odd limitations on the last two.) This game's shown characters in boats, behind tables, and the like before, but this is the first time a character has incorporated part of the background to add a bit of color.
Now you sound like the Barrister. He's always snooping around here.
So is there anything we need from her? Him? It?
No, not really. But there are some edibles here, so you might as well get them.
All right. I won't be able to get back up here, though. The rope doesn't reach the floor.
Don't look now, dear, but your petals are drooping.
Not a problem; just use the ladder.
This looks fairly straightforward.
Yes, you just collect the goodies and make your way out. Be careful, though; there are a couple of gaps in the floor, one just before the stairs.
Oh, good eye. And I suppose the door I can reach connects to the other door?
Right, and the path out of this maze-like substance leads to the top of the little building you entered to get in here in the first place.
So the only reason to come in here was to collect those snacks?
Yep. You can never have too many shape-changing snacks.
I'll try the other side of the birdbath now.
It's another birdbath, with a much smaller entrance.
Speaking of shape-changing snacks...
I'll use the top hat first, so I get up there more quickly...
...and now I can squeeze into this gap.
Since we already met the White Queen... excuse me, are you the Red Queen?
Hello? Are you the--
Your voice is too faint to be heard.
Uh? Oh! I see what you mean. Let me just eat a yellow mushroom.
I haven't seen your letters of introduction from three famous people.
Excuse me, are you the Red Queen?
And just who are you to ask? You look rather unimportant to me.
I- My name's Alice, Your Majesty, and I was wondering if you could tell me--
No, a rule's a rule; and a ruler's a ruler--unless it's under twelve inches.
I beg your pardon, Your Majesty, I only want to know--
How would it be if everything talked to everything? The world would be filled with babble.
There's no need to be so arrogant just because--
Whoa, watch it! Scolding her is only going to piss her off.
Well, what should I do, then?
Hm. Maybe a little music?
Hm. I do know an appropriate tune...
Crinkle, crinkle, little hat.
I don't have one quite like that.
Lots of points it's got so high
like a hedgehog in the sky.
(To the tune of 'Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star.')
Take the train to the Crystal Palace.
And she's gone. But at least I have an objective now. Even if I don't really understand it.
You'll have to eat another mushroom to get out of here.
It's a good thing we picked those cakes and elixirs up, then. I'll parasol down and keep going.
Better eat another mushroom first.
Oh no, it's her again!
What are you waiting for, Alice? Hurry!
Who are you?
You're too young for amnesia.
And why do you keep stalking me?
Believe me. If I could team up with someone else, I would.
Just... just go away!
Well, I know someone who isn't going to get a birthday card from me.
Whoa, Alice, deep cleansing breaths. Get ahold of yourself.
How can I when the Red King could wake up at any moment?
(I/he) wasn't talking to you!
Never mind her, Alice. The only thing she's got is a clue you don't need.
You're right. I'm just going to ignore her and keep going.
Oh, that water was so cold!
At least it wasn't a very long crossing. I'll keep an eye out for somewhere you can warm up, though.
What's that up ahead?
Yeah. Whoa. I'm counting... three doors, a collectible, an NPC, a couple of monsters, and a sign.
Plus whatever's past Humpty Dumpty.
Well, this seems like a good spot to take a break. Next time on 'Alice in Wonderland', Alice visits Cloud Nine!
And every other numbered cloud.