A group of people who seem to have nothing in common gather on an old staircase of gray marble, leading up to an even more ancient house. I am among them, and it is into this house we must go in order to solve The Mystery. Im wearing an emerald ball gown and over-the elbow satin gloves. The others of varying age, class and creed are dressed more or less in keeping with the idea that we’ve all just come from a ball at Downton Abbey. It must not have been too lively judging by the perfection of my perfectly coifed up-do, but I digress…
The plot doesn’t so much thicken at this point, as it is laid out on convenient notecards allotted to each of us in turn. In a beautiful golden hand, a mysterious character has written:
You are all part of a curious puzzle
The only way to survive is to play by the rules
Each room has a ghost
Each ghost has a clue
Some ghosts are not friendly
Finally can you tell me, somehow in some way, YOU are connected to this place…
As we all cross the threshold into the home, it becomes clearer than usual, everything seems to stand out as if it were too perfect to be real. I settle right into it, game on.
To get into any of the rooms occupied by a ghost, you must walk across the living room, open one of hundreds of little drawers set right into the walls, and retrieve a “key” that is not really a key, but an object. You must then take said object to whichever room it pertains to, and the room will be open only to you. Inside that room there will be a ghost who will give you a single clue to help you solve The Mystery. There are a total of 15 ghosts with “keys” in the panel, one of which is the murder victim, and assumedly one is the killer. Only those two ghosts know what really happened.
The first member of our group to die is a fat, middle-aged man. He makes a break for the wall of drawers, but just as his feet graze the living-room carpeting, he turns blue as if he were drowned, and topples over. The only other entrance to the living room is through the kitchen, so we all redirect our plans of attack, armed with the would-have-been-nice-to-know-earlier knowledge that the entire house is booby trapped. I step into the kitchen which is very brightly lit, and see that all of the surfaces, counters, floors, everything is covered with piles of hot, reeking food that has been rotting for quite some time. I moved past it quickly and could see an eerie trail of pale light extending like a snake between myself and the living room drawers. I assumed that, though I would need to climb over the piano to do so, keeping to this trail would keep me from death, for now.
I crept over to the drawers and pulled one open, but it was stuck fast. Instead of moving on to a different drawer, I kept pulling at it until finally it popped open… As did every other drawer on the wall. “Keys” and objects flew all over the room and at once all of the ghosts were swirling around me. I couldn’t hear their clues because they were all talking at once. I remembered most a sad looking woman wearing a bonnet, and a man with a handlebar mustache dressed as if he were headed out on safari. I knew at once that the woman was the murder victim, and that none of the ghosts around me had committed the crime. I fled the scene, overwhelmed by all the clue offering specters and found myself back in the entry hall where the game had started.
I was alone, as my fellow players had all run in behind me to attempt to figure out what I already knew amid the shrieking. A spirit appeared next to me, he was dressed like a pirate and had a rapier. I fled from him, up the stairs and to the right, but he cornered me. I looked down at myself and I had changed. I was the sad woman.