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Nancy Drew: The Final Scene -- Day 3 - The Forbidden Codex of The Pink Beyond - A Sqrl's Journal

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January 4th, 2014

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08:56 am - Nancy Drew: The Final Scene -- Day 3
Last time, Simone made me go "ugh", Brady made me go "aww", Nicholas made me go "ha you're not so bad", and Joseph made me go "huh". Also we almost found Maya and called the police.

To start with... What's this whole business about a ransom? Nancy skims the newspaper to see what's up with that.

That's curious. The primary goal up until now, and every interaction with the kidnapper so far, has centered around "saving the theater" and not letting it be torn down. What could cause such a huge swing in motivation at this late hour of the plot? As we lower the paper, we see Nancy's in the office and there's a conspicuous note nearby asking her to head up to the booth and talk to Joe.

Joe can't believe this demand either. The call was traced to Granite City, far to the north... and now the police are convinced that Maya isn't in the building at all, in spite of what Nancy says. It doesn't help that in the time between Nancy calling the police and them getting there, all the evidence down in the hidden room went MYSTERIOUSLY MISSING. Somehow. Nancy is super-not-happy to hear this.

Neither Joe or Nancy can work out what's going on. Joe talks for a while, including mentioning that in a fit of boredom he repaired a key-making machine that's been broken for years. Then Nancy asks Joe about his so-called "brother", and Joe shrugs. Yes, his brother's dead... but he's still moving to Greasewood. He threw in the part about living with a sibling so Nancy wouldn't worry about an old man bein' all alone.

The first thing Nancy does is go straight down to the secret room, to verify that yes, it's been scrubbed of evidence like one of those secret alien warehouses they were always finding on the X-Files. Sigh. Well, let's run through the usual suspects.

SIMONE: Has been thinking about the "Nancy Drew" problem. Why doesn't Nancy use a stage name? How about "Samantha Quick"? She loves it, right? ... Nnnot so much. We also ask her about why Brady seems so ... moody lately.

She also offers her thoughts about the ransom - Some no-class amateur trying to ride on the free publicity. Besides, asking for anything less than a million shows such a lack of class she can't even --

Goodbye, Simone! Not even talking to you anymore.

On the way out from seeing Simone, a bunch of dust suddenly falls from above Nancy and lands on the floor in front of her. I'm busy peering at that in confusion, so I actually jump when a few seconds later part of the lighting rig smashes to the floor after it.

Nancy is in no way impressed by her brush with death.

BRADY: Nervous about seeing Nancy "hanging out" with Nicholas. Nancy wonders if he's jealous and calls him "Prince Charmstrong". This goes nowhere but is funny. We also pinch a pencil out of his stuff for no reason other than "we can" and "it's a new interactable object". Nancy's kleptomania runs wild. What else is in this bag...

Maya's NOTEBOOK?! WTF are you doing with THAT, Brady?

Brady denies. Nancy presses. Brady comes clean. His name isn't actually Brady Armstrong, you see. That's his stage name. His name is Brady Thompson.

As in B. Thompson.

As in, "Wave of the Future" director B. Thompson. The thing is, he can't be connected to this theater. Brady ARMSTRONG is dashing. "Wholesomely smouldering", as Simone puts it. White teeth, charming, sparkling. The theater is run down, dirty, a heap. It's all about projecting the right IMAGE. He's going to knock it down and build the first in a chain of Brady Armstrong's "Planet Tinseltown" cafes.

Seriously?! Brady, for THAT you kidnapped Maya?

Long, awkward silence. Actually, he DIDN'T kidnap Maya. Her notebook was in the basement, with her press pass. Brady never actually met Maya and has no idea who kidnapped her. "But it's obvious she's not in the building."

But the evidence --

Only Nancy saw it. He thinks she made it up.

But JOSEPH said --

Joseph is an old codger.

But Nicholas --

Is using her. That's what Falcone does.


Gonna be honest, I had him pegged as a decent guy. I actually have to get up and stomp around the living room in a huff for a while. How the fuck did I fall for a bad haircut and a charming smile?! Rrrgh.

All right, this case isn't gonna solve itself. ... Wait, what about Nicholas?! He'll want to know about B. Thompson! I zip back to the lobby to talk to him, only to find he doesn't want to listen right now. There are bigger fish to fry.

A package has come from the Library of Congress, and there's a slide with a letter inside. The thing is, the only thing that can view the slide is the projector up in the booth ... and the police are going to start clearing the building in an hour or so. This is their one and only shot at proving Houdini owns a stake in the theater! Falcone throws himself in front of the police with his best stalling routine so Nancy can head up to the projection booth and see what's on the slide.

So Nancy goes to the booth! She puts in the slide! She flips the switch on the projector! It goes POP loudly and turns off. ... fffffffu--

And here I get stuck for about half an hour. The solution is a bit... nonintuitive. There's a book up here I hadn't noticed that has a bunch of projector maintenance info in it. There's also the faint outline of a key on the back page of the book. What I end up having to do is shade the outline in with my (Brady's) pencil, then go down to the lobby where that keymaker Joe repaired is, stick in a quarter for... because it costs a quarter, and trial-and-error a keyblank into the right shape.

It's kinda cool looking actually.

That key unlocks the side of the projector (as detailed on page 72 of the projector manual I hadn't noticed). Unfortunately, just outside the door Nancy hears the police. This is their final pre-demolition sweep. ANYONE in the theater will be thrown out. Ffff I HAVEN'T LOOKED YET, THAT CAN'T HAPPEN. Nancy grabs something loose inside of the projector, slams it shut and jumps into the closet just in time to hide from the police.

Once they're gone, we get the letter in focus and read it.

That's a bit sexist. ... Wait. Struggling woman artist... ... it couldn't be.

Then Nancy takes a look at the loose object from inside the projector. It's another slide. Must've gotten lodged in there somehow. Wait a second. 'Official Property of the County Records'... These are the original plans to the theater. The ones that were stolen. Nancy sticks them in for a look -- and the focus knob falls off the projector and rolls under the desk. Fuck. We crawl in after it.

you know that cool old dude
the guy that we've been telling

We get the knob and get that county records slide back into focus.

Of course there is.

We turn around to check that out.

Of course he is. Joseph rambles about how he needs to clean up in here. Nancy points out we're both about to die, and Maya too. Joseph rambles about how a fresh coat of paint will make the place look like new. Nancy explains that maybe he wasn't meant to be a kidnapper. Joseph speculates that once Brady's movie premire sells out the theater will be rolling in money. Nancy asks if he's snapped, and demands that he give Maya back.

"You're NOT taking her away! She's my one chance to save this place!" Joseph yells, and locks Nancy in. Oh god, he's snapped proper. We gotta get outta here. Nancy pulls open the little power box on the wall and flips a switch inside, dropping a ladder from the ceiling. Great. We go up. Maybe I WILL get a chance to fall off the roof.

Upstairs, upstairs... and some yahoo with a bullhorn outside declares the wrecking ball will swing in three minutes. The music just got urgent. Okay... upstairs, locked door, none of my keys will open it, there's a lockbox... Ah, a use for that key I've had since the start of the game practically. What are these papers?

AWESOME. Now I just need to live long enough for someone to see them. There's also about a billion keys. I grab them all and shove them at the locked door up here until one FINALLY opens it.

Is that an OVEN? What the hell. Nancy glances out the window and makes a plan: If she can turn on the marquee lights, the demolition will stop so they can see what's going on. The switch is on the wall right there, so we'll just --


As Joseph staggers away, Nancy grabs for the switch-


"Dear Bess,

I can still hardly believe that Joseph, sweet old Joseph, was Maya's kidnapper! He says he planned to kidnap Brady with the idea that Simone would use her Hollywood connections to save the theater, but when Maya entered the dressing room he panicked and grabbed her instead. Plan 'B' was to stall the demolition long enough for the Historical Society to have the building declared an official landmark."

"But, desperation aside, poor Joseph wasn't cut out for a life of crime and pretty soon things were spinning out of his control. Simone's publicity stunts didn't help. At least he was kind to Maya through the whole thing. Her testimony should help him in court. The good news is that the Royal Palladium is still standing! Once he heard Nicholas would inherit his grandmother's 50% of the theater, Brady decided to find somewhere else to put up Planet Tinseltown."

"Not such a happy ending for Simone, I'm afraid. She recieved an official reprimand from the National Press Corps for her stunt with the wreath. Still, knowing Simone, she'll be back at the top of her game in no time."

"That ends the longest three days of MY LIFE! The premire of 'Vanishing Destiny' is back on, but THIS detective is going to wait for it to come out on videotape. Talk to you soon...


And so, my sassy detectives, we've solved ANOTHER CASE!

This entry was originally posted at http://xyzzysqrl.dreamwidth.org/376803.html. Please comment there using OpenID.

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[User Picture]
Date:January 6th, 2014 04:51 pm (UTC)
Aww, poor Joseph. :( I wish it'd been someone more hateable, like Simone or Brady.

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