The Let's Play Archive


by Grimwit

Part 22: Day Two- Page 22

Ghostwoods posted:

Hnng, those scenes...

Um. Can we lift or pull the lining?

Man, you guys really want to tear up the house before Miranda's even suttled in.
Let's see, then.

>look at lining
The lining is soft, dusky burgundy. One corner in back is pulled up a bit and slightly torn.

How about we just search it first. Miranda is very fond of this cabinet. It's where she's gonna keep all her treasures.

>search velvet
You pull the lining back a bit further and discover a thin, palm-sized journal tucked underneath it. Intrigued, you pull the little book free.

Your score has just gone up by two points.

Oh! What's this?

>look at little book
It's a slim little book, no bigger than your hand, bound in imitation leather. The mice really have been at it; most of the pages have been chewed away.

>read little book
It's a slim little book, no bigger than your hand, bound in imitation leather. The mice really have been at it; most of the pages have been chewed away.

What's left of the journal reads:

Desperate. Went back to the old twisting lane and found only a blank wall. Without the amulet, how can I resist --

...bottles, bottles...

Getting worse. People I have never met smile knowingly at me in the street. The police believe I am a child molester, but have brought no charges against me as yet. Why? Head hurts all the time. I have turned the cellar upside-down... damn it all, where is it?

Dreamed of Father again. Dreamed of Grandfather. Those horrible, red-rimmed eyes...

-- into the safe, finally. 12-53-2. Won't forget THAT soon. Ha!

CANNOT DISCOVER ENTRANCE IN THE CELLAR!!! Secret eludes me still but I WILL FIND IT!!! The clue is in their names, that pestilential procession of names! If I could only --

The text breaks off as several more pages are missing. the last fragmented entry reads:

-- will fail. There is no recourse left. I know now what I must do. Julia --

Well, that sort of solves the safe upstairs. We'll deal with that at the end of the update.
For now, let's see if we can find out who Julia is. This journal is pretty old, so let's see if she's in the album.

>Put journal into coat
You slip the torn journal into the pocket of your trenchcoat.
>take album

>look up Julia in album
No mention of Edward's wife, since the book was published in 1944 and she probably wasn't even born yet. Even so, you're uncertain whether Julia Ward would have even counted as a proper Verlac

Honestly, this was the only way I found out Julia was Edward Verlac's wife. Not only that, we even have Julia's maiden name. Ward.
Miranda is second guessing how she suddenly knows these things, but then she's not sure why she would have torn up the lining of her precious china cabinet, too.

>put album into coat
You slip the family album into the pocket of your trenchcoat.

>turn on flashlight
The flashlight emits a warm yellow beam.

The pantry is empty save for a layer of dust on the shelves. A door to the south leads down to the cellar, or you can return to the kitchen to the southeast.

>enter cellar
(the key to the cellar)
That's not something you can enter.

I... What?
Why would you even...

>open cellar door
You open the cellar door.

You descend the gloomy steps into the dank cellar.

The old, flagstone walls gleam with unwholesome-smelling moisture, and the sagging timbers creak uneasily above your head. Ancient, frayed wiring festoons the ceiling like some strange species of clinging vine. Portions of the cellar extend south and east into the clammy darkness, though you could always beat a hasty retreat up the stairs to the north.

One largish bundle of wires leads down to a rusty old fuse cabinet bolted to the far wall.

So, here's the cellar. Of course it's important down here, but plenty sparse, too.

>look at wires
The wiring runs back and forth across the ceiling in every direction -- wrapped around timbers, in and out of rusted, broken conduits, crossing and re-crossing itself in a dozen places. You can see several places where the insulation is cracked or stripped altogether. It's enough to send any self-respecting fire marshall into conniptions.

>look at cabinet
It's an ancient, clunky metal box, about the size of a kid's lunchbox. There's some sort of lettering on the cover, but it's too corroded to read.

Well, I don't know when THAT will come into play, but we'de best remember where the fuse box is for later.


Wine Cellar
This wing of the cellar is even older than the rest, with walls of piled, unmortared stone. The entire room is filled with wine racks. They cover every wall except for one spot to the west, where an exit leads back to the main cellar.

All of the racks are dust-covered and empty except for one against the north wall, which contains some forty or fifty dark bottles.

You are reminded of something Michael told you during the long drive up: about how when the police arrived after the shooting, they found the wine cellar in a shambles -- nearly every bottle thrown to the floor and shattered, and the whole place reeking of rotted grapes. All except the bottles in the north rack. None of those had been touched. No one could posit a motive for it.

You smile a bit, recalling your husband's ability to turn a piece of insignificant trivia into a compelling story. Still, though, now that you're actually standing here... it all seems very strange.

Good to know Miranda can start a wine collection with Michael!
Of course she won't tell him where she stolebought the bottles, nor would he ask.

>Look at bottles
Row after row of smooth, dust-covered glass. The wine inside is dark and murky, reminding you, somewhat irrationally, of blood.

>look at rack
These racks must have at one time contained hundreds upon hundreds of wine bottles. Idly, you wonder which member of the family developed such a taste for what would have been, for the first few generations at least, a sinful vice of the basest kind.

I don't have to tell you Miranda wants some booze for her coat.

>take bottle
Strange; the bottles all seem to be fixed in place. They won't come out of the rack no matter how you tug at them.

Huh? Why would someone glue/staple/solder these bottles into place?
I smell a mystery.

>hit bottles with broom
Violence isn't the answer to this one.

One day, it will be the answer, game.
One day.

>Read bottles
The labels are faded and obscured by dust, but you can make out a few of them. Some of these vintages appear to be very old.

Huh. Well, I can't think of anything else here. Moving on.


One largish bundle of wires leads down to a rusty old fuse cabinet bolted to the far wall.


Old crates and boxes piled high against the walls make this room seem even smaller and dingier than it actually is, which is saying a lot. A doorway lies north; the other walls contain nothing but shadows and dirt-filled corners.

Oh boy! Stuff!

>look at crates
The accumulated junk of almost four centuries' worth of one family's strangeness. Most of it is old linens, moth-eaten clothes, newspaper clippings -- exciting stuff like that. There's far more here than you could ever go through, even if you had the inclination to.

Miranda has the inclination.
Let's see what's worth taking, but first...
(Because I know you goons would make me, anyway)

>look under crates
You find nothing of interest.

There. Now about this crate...

>search crates
You spend some time poking dispiritedly through boxes of second-hand table settings, discarded shoes and outdated encyclopedias, but the only thing you manage to dig up is an old cardboard box full of newspaper clippings, which might make interesting reading later if you can find the time. The only thing at all noteworthy about the room, in fact, is that it desperately wants cleaning; there's even a big, nasty-looking spider web in a corner behind one of the crates.

>take shoebox
You pick up the cardboard box. It's an old gray shoebox, ragged around the edges, with the lid missing.
In the cardboard box are some newspaper clippings.

Miranda will read this next update. There's a LOT of stuff to comb through.
I may even dedicate the whole next update to that shoebox.

>look at web
Not a pretty, symmetrical spiral web like you see in nature magazines; this is a tangled, ugly mass of dull gray threads spun in every direction, the work of some careless, inebriated arachnid on a weekend binger. Way back in the corner, almost buried beneath the disheveled strands, is an old-fashioned iron key.

Looks like the spider got into the wine after Edward broke all those bottles.

>Take key
(the old-fashioned iron key)
You gingerly stick your hand into the tangled spider web, and something light and skittery crawls across your skin and bites you!

Quickly you jerk back, compulsively wiping your hand on your pants. The bite itself didn't hurt all that much, but the thought of spiders crawling around on your skin gives you the willies.

Damn! Well, it's probably nothing. Maybe it's gone now and we can try again.

>take key
(the old-fashioned iron key)
Once bitten, twice shy. Whatever lives in that mess is better left alone.

Well, that's the cellar, for now.
Let's get up to the safe and try that combination.


One largish bundle of wires leads down to a rusty old fuse cabinet bolted to the far wall.

Gratefully, you leave the clammy confines of the cellar behind.


The cellar door stands open, revealing dark stairs leading down.

>turn off flashlight

You switch the flashlight off.

A wave of dizziness washes over you suddenly, making you light-headed. Your hand is swollen and throbbing a little, and your skin is flushed with an unpleasant, prickly heat. It occurs to you to wonder whether the spider that bit you might have been poisonous.

Nah. Miranda is fine. She's just a bit worried.

Dining Room

Your luggage is still here, spread out all over the foyer.

The dizziness hits you again, and you sway as little black ink blots bloom in your vision. Your hand is really hurting now, and you feel short of breath.

This is probably brought on by hunger. After all, when was the last time Miranda Carter ate anything?

Upstairs Landing
Upstairs Hall

A rickety wooden ladder stands here, descending from a three-foot by three-foot square of darkness in the ceiling.

You are burning up; you can barely see through the waves of blackness washing across your vision. You try to sit down, only to realize that you're already lying on the ground, unable to move. In a disconnected, feverish haze, you vaguely wonder if Michael will find you in time to call the hospital; and that is your last thought before feeling leaves your limbs and your lungs stop working entirely.

*** You have died ***

In that game you scored 10 out of a possible 100 points; you have merely scratched the surface of evil.

Would you like to RESTART, RESTORE a saved game, UNDO your last move, give the FULL score for that game or QUIT?

> full

In that game you scored 10 out of a possible 100 points; you have merely scratched the surface of evil.

The score was made up as follows:

2 points for finding the house keys
2 points for showing the keys to Michael
1 point for taking a bath
2 points for finding the journal
2 points for finding the diary
1 point for finding the safe

10 total (out of 100)

Would you like to RESTART, RESTORE a saved game, UNDO your last move, give the FULL score for that game or QUIT?

> quit

None. Miranda is dead.