26th Feb 2020, 6:06 PM
Ask about the mayor

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Ask about the mayor
"What makes you so sure the spooky house shut-in was a woman?," you ask.

"Oh, I have no idea," Marlow replies. "I just find it more likely."

"Witches," chuckles Afu.

"You gotta admit," Marlow adds, "The Witches of Spooky House has a ring to it."

"The Spooky House Witches," you mutter.

"See?," he says. "It just feels right."

"I've heard the mayor's pretty weird, too," you mention.

Afu grins.

"The mayor's a vampire," Marlow declares. "Like, that's barely a secret. Can't be recorded, doesn't have a reflection, doesn't come out in the daytime. Supposedly lives at the office, but there's no bedrooms or dorms or anything there. Came outta nowhere, dresses and talks like a 19th century noblewoman... and her name's the worst part."

Afu chuckles. "Rill Parsons."

"Real Persons?," Marlow asks. "Seriously? She's not even trying."

"The secretary's human, though, right?," Afu asks.

"Human, I don't know," Marlow admits. "I don't think Ms. Walsh is a vampire, but she's definitely in cahoots with Parsons. She has a real address, for starters, and by all accounts does sleep. The secretary showed up a few months before Parsons did... like she was scouting the place out for her. Might be a... uh... like a follower, or how vampires have servants."

"Like a thrall," you suggest. Like the Renfield to the mayor's Dracula.

"Yeah. Don't get me wrong," Marlow says, putting his hands up. "I'd still vote for Parsons. Larry Montane was a crook, and we're otherwise strapped for decent politicians around here. Anybody that pisses MondolGroup off like Parsons and Walsh have can't be complete monsters, and bills have been lower than I've ever seen 'em before."

Again, you just have one big question.

"But why?," you ask. "Why would a vampire run for mayor...?"

Marlow inhales deeply

before he states "Honestly? I have no idea. The cynic in me says she's softening the town up--she's taken a lot o' swings in the last ten months at trying to de-militarize our police force. Really shook the ranks up, too, had some folks fired and others moved to different departments. She's been trying to scale back the budget, shuffle the funds from the cops to... well, anything else."

He gives a small shrug.

"The rational in me says we needed that, though. Montane built our cops up like a private army--they've got the equipment to fight a war, just not any of that other shit it takes to be a soldier. There's a lot of cronyism, a lot of unprofessional conduct coming out of our police force... very us against them mentality, even for cops."

"And they're lazy as hell," Afu adds.

"That too," agrees Marlow with a finger point. "And infrastructure's gone to hell. If Parsons wiped the whole force and started over I couldn't blame her. I know I just got done talking about how they're sleeper agents for The State, but I'd promote those animal control girls up to being real cops. They're fit, they're smart, they're driven--fuck it, I say, if we have to have cops we could do better than what we got. My only concern is that the mayor's not trying to clean house, she's just spreading out the papers for burning it all down."

Hmm.

He said the mayor's been at it for ten months.

You remember Cici said Parsons became mayor less than a year ago, so that fits.

"...How long ago did the spooky house become the spooky house?"

"Oh, it's always been Spooky House," Marlow replies with a smirk. "Even when the original owner lived there... man, that place had a vibe to it. If you're asking when it all went sideways, that was about... eh, six months ago. The suits showed up, the current library closed while they looked for someone to staff it, and since then Spooky House has been unlivable."

"Unlivable... like...?" You're just playing along at this point.

"People move in," Afu says, "and then they move the fuck out."

"No stopping for comments," Marlow adds, "not even a pause to look back. Whatever it is people are seeing in that house, it's legit. I thought about buying it this last time just out of curiosity, but my wife said no."

"It was cheap enough," Afu laughs, "I coulda bought it if I was a little older."


So if everything Marlow, the bus and Cici have said is accurate:

• The old library fell apart about five years ago

• MondolGroup got their foothold about three years ago

• Rill Parsons became mayor about ten months ago

• The previous librarian disappeared, and the spooky house was wiped clean by the feds, about six months ago. Cici, who had been animal control prior to losing her eye, was hired as the new librarian.

"Do you think the mayor has any connection to the spooky house...?," you ask.

"Hard to say," Marlow replies. "There was a period there where Spooky House was occupied, someone was coming and going at night, Parsons was mayor and Ms. Walsh was her acting secretary, all at the same time--"

Afu nods. "So there's no big twist where Mayor Parsons was secretly the shut-in at the spooky house."

"Right," confirms Marlow. "We're looking at four separate individuals here. It does mean that whatever happened at Spooky House to get the feds' attention--it happened about four months after Parsons became mayor."

You still remember what Kate said to Rill Parsons.

"I think there's something you want in there.

That's why you haven't wiped that house off the face of the earth,

and that's why you want Plaire to sell it to you."



The witches (?) owned the house. Parsons moved into town, became mayor... wants whatever the house is.

Holy shit, did Parsons kill the original owner?

She seemed pretty genuine about not wanting you to die. ...It doesn't seem likely that she'd murder all the original occupants.

That timing can't be a coincidence, though. The mayor does know something, more than she's let on, about what that house is capable of--at the very minimum, you strongly suspect she knows what happened to the mysterious shut-in and the old librarian.


"Since we're being frank, Ms. Stevens, please--allow me.

Those nightmares will kill you."




...Maybe it really is that simple.

Maybe the spooky house witches were eaten by the spooky house.

The old library fell apart five years ago, though. That's... years and years and years of the spooky house not eating anyone, before or after the changing of libraries, and then suddenly Parsons is mayor and two people (?) die.


Rill Parsons and Temperance Walsh are involved somehow.



... Somehow.



Rationally, you don't know that the house has killed anyone--all you have to go on for that is the mayor's word. Your nightmares thus far have just ended with you waking up, and no permanent damage. The mayor could have just been trying to scare you out of the house.

The weird dreams could be from fumes leaking out of the mines. The mayor's position probably affords her access to blueprints and other documents that aren't public record--she could even be inducing the dreams at night by cranking up the... uh... fumage.

And then, when she murders you, there's a nice cover story about the house being haunted.

In faaact...

"Did the feds show up during the day?," you ask.

"Yeah," Marlow replies. "They were swarming the house most of that afternoon."

Bingo.

Victim(s?) was killed during the day, removing any suspicion from the mayor--because the mayor's put up the somehow convincing alibi of being a fucking vampire.

There might not be anything supernatural going on at all. The house could just have... you don't know, pirate gold buried in the walls or something that the mayor is killing people to acquire. If you had a talking dog, you would go right now and pull the rubber mask off Mayor Parsons, revealing she was in fact the old librarian this whole time

or... something. Like that.

You suspect that any theory involving the dream being a mining fume induced hallucination isn't going to hold up past the multiplayer test, though, and then you're going to be right back to speculating about witches, vampires, and dog catcher sleeper cells.

You would like to think this doesn't end with you actually fighting vampires, though, or being eaten by your magical house.

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26th Feb 2020, 6:29 PM
undeadDreamer
...I mean you have to admit fighting vampires is pretty cool though.
26th Feb 2020, 8:59 PM
Limrix
Video games have taught me that fighting vampires is cool, and I believe them. Now where's my whip...
26th Feb 2020, 6:58 PM
Fishbulb
Now would probably be a good time to mention that we own the Spooky House.
26th Feb 2020, 7:46 PM
26th Feb 2020, 8:05 PM
27th Feb 2020, 6:16 PM
pkrankow
I am having second tjoughts on speaking about our ownership. We might be better served saving this for the owner of the ring. We should put a deposit down.
26th Feb 2020, 9:48 PM
pkrankow
Maybe yes.

Maybe no.
26th Feb 2020, 10:41 PM
27th Feb 2020, 2:35 PM
+1.

Depending on their reaction, see if they are interested in going all ghost hunter on the place.
27th Feb 2020, 4:36 PM
I don't think that's a good idea.
26th Feb 2020, 7:03 PM
So now we know the surefire way to get the mayor's attention then: announce that you're having a bonfire party as you burn down your own Spooky House and the whole town's invited! Bring food!
26th Feb 2020, 8:58 PM
Limrix
If you pay me $1,000,000 I won't burn my house down.
26th Feb 2020, 8:45 PM
Frission
I simultaneously love and hate all the current suggestions.
26th Feb 2020, 9:09 PM
Limrix
The dream house replicated the potato we put into our pocket. I don't think it's gas. Also dreams don't usually end with physical pain. I think someone tried something with the house that set it off base. Now the observers of the world definitely have this record, and if we can contact them on the third level, we should get a good deal of info. At a cost.
27th Feb 2020, 5:39 AM
So, the mayor is basically ending the police, and she's either doing it for good or bad reasons, maybe more likely bad ones. Still though, ACAB. This is kinda a perfect opportunity to form a militia/community watch/community support group. The brutal arm of the law is too uncaring and gangly to deal with complicated social issues (Which are generally the things that lead to crime and other forms of unrest, if you include monetary issues as a form of social issue. So basically i'm saying that the fuzz can't fix socio-economic problems. All state knows is smash "bad guy" with hammer and put in cage)