The Let's Play Archive

The Novelist

by ThatPazuzu

Part 5: The Bottle

The Bottle: Linda and Tommy were getting worr
So… “the Bottle.” What kind of bottle is it? Water? Ketchup? The kind with the little ship inside? That seems like something Dan would be way into. Anyway, before we rattle our brains with this mystery, let’s try to analyze the metaphor in Linda’s newly finished painting.

Even though Linda is supposed to have stopped painting, she’s made progress. This is when a fun mechanic (the painting gradually getting painted) works against and even contradicts the narrative.

Anyway, it’s a picture of a bird staying in its cage even though it could escape. Hmmmm… I wonder if this has any deeper meaning? But I don’t know. This is pretty high-level Maya Angalou shit.

Also, Tommy hung his kite up over his bed, next to his pictures of his friend and Dan. Like a little shrine to a happy childhood. This room almost looks too happy for Tommy, the macabre baby.


So Dan made a shopping list that includes some curious items, like aspirin and a case of beer. Although I will say the most curious item on the stopping list is “ogburn.” Am I reading that right? Maybe he meant he wanted to pick up a book by Charlton Ogburn… at the grocery store.

It's hard to tell from this angle but it reads WHISKEY. It looks more like a medicine bottle that a whiskey bottle to me, but whatever.

So, according to Dan, he's been drinking responsibly and he's made great progress in his book. I'm sure this is an unbiased opinion on the subject.

Oh, there is another readable item in this room, the Literary Registry, but it hasn't been updated and isn't required for progress so there's no point.

Maybe Dan isn't doing so good after all. He seems really stressed out and dependent on alcohol. He's still pretentiously quoting Hemmingway so we know he's not too far gone. It's tragic but it's not like we did anything to make him more stressed oh wait

"Write drunk; edit sober" is my method of LPing, by the way.

Okay, I've been trying to interject levity but what the hell happened?


Oh, he just stumbled over his couch. You can’t hear it but he made the goofiest sound. I think they were trying to be serious with this scene but it’s hilarious.

Our choice to compromise with Dan and get him in the Literary Registry really stressed him out, exactly like he wanted. And it seems like he doesn't know how to deal with stress as good as he thought.

And Dan's solution to all this? Just keep on truckin'. He hasn't caused any damage to anything but his liver and it is helping him write so...


I took this picture to show off two three things. The note, the little bucket they got for Tommy, and the photos. You’ve probably noticed them in the house but you can see that one of them is a family portrait. Why did they bring family portraits to a rental? Well, we’re a light manifestation so it’s not our place to question realism.

So Linda, in lieu of painting, has been going around town and seeing movies and reading. I mean, that’s a pretty productive way to spend time.

Dayum, calling Dan out on his bullshit. It seems like Linda is feeling very neglected now that Dan is spending all his time drunk or writing. Additionally, it appears that Dan was playing down how often and how much he drinks around the house. Or maybe it's Linda who is exaggerating.

Also, if you were playing this like a normal person, and not organizing it based on characters, you’d find this right after reading the note where Dan quotes Hemingway.

Linda's little note nook is always a great place to search.

It seems like her concern isn't just a selfish one about being neglected. She is deeply worried about his health and is trying to not be condescending about it.

Linda resumes her ritual of staring out the window.

Why don’t you stop at two?-Linda
I’m fine.-Dan

He isn’t slurring his speech here so he could have actually been fine but Linda is still concerned.

This is also the screencap that made me realize that Dan's hair and mustache are kinda Ringo Starr-esque. That just makes me happy.

Sometimes when I look at the moon I imagine that Linda is looking up at that same moon.

Linda has barely picked up a paintbrush since our last vote. All those chores on the door were her futilely looking for inspiration. But it seems like she's going to give it another go.

Linda's option is completely selfless this time around. She really just wants to get Dan moving and away from drunkenly banging on the keyboard all day.


As always, Tommy has been drawing the most heart wrenching things.

Linda isn't the only one feeling neglected; Dan's drinking is making a huge impact on Tommy.

Aww, in-between shots Dan got Tommy a little car! I had one just like it as a kid!

Although I'm not too sure about that ETA. Three hours seems a bit much to just attach the wheels and steering.

Pfft, okay, this is crossing the line into Lifetime Original movie territory, Tommy.

But he promised…-Tommy
If he doesn’t do it, I’ll help you honey.-Linda

So it looks like Dan's been too shwasted to help Tommy make that little Ikea car. If Dan doesn't help Tommy, the car will still get made, but then his dad would be a liar.

Huh, so even with the drinking problem, all the good dadding we forced Dan to do has started to pay off.

But Tommy still reallly wants Dan to put that car together!

So what's it going to be? Are we going to force Dan to take a break to bond with his kid? Or are we going to insist that he get out and active instead of drinking all day? Or will we just let this continue, because his book deadline is nearing? The choice is yours, goons!