Do you have what it takes to solve a [[murder]]? Welcome to the [[Walden Mansion]], where everyone has a motive and nothing is what it seems.
<img src="http://atinybitofsunshine.com/twine/mansion.jpg"/>[[Ainsley Walden]] decided to throw a [[grand party]] for her birthday. The house was filled with [[food]], [[guests]], and [[loud music]]. It's said that the mansion wasn't empty until almost five in the morning.The Walden Mansion has always been a historical landmark, since it's creation in the 1600s. The mansion boasts five stories, with more rooms than any one family could possibly need. There is a [[library]], [[ballroom]], and a huge [[kitchen]]. Ainsley Walden was the sole heir of parents Winston and Margot Walden. Spoiled and bratty, Ainsley Walden was 'popular', but there were also plenty of people who would want her [[dead->murder]]. The party went on until almost five in the morning, however time of death for Ainsley Walden is around two in the morning. She was discovered in her [[bedroom]], with the [[window]] wide open. All of Ainsley's favorite foods were avaible, including [[Shrimp Puffs]] and Caprese Bites. All the food was prepared by the Walden's personal chef. You bump into a [[group of guests]] from the party. This one includes Ainsley's best friend, [[Olivia Whytmore]]. There is a small group huddled across the room from you, looking terrified. You approach them like you would approach a group of small, wounded animals. They look at you suspiciously.
"I just have a few questions I need to ask..."
A handsome blonde boy steps forward and says he will answer your [[questions]]. You head to the library, which was one of the most crowded places during the party. There is a young man who looks vaguely familiar to you. You approach [[him]]. The ballroom is empty. You decide to [[step outside]] to get some fresh air and clear your head. You decide to head to the kitchen. There is no one here, not even the Walden's personal chef. You decide to do some [[poking around]]. There seems to be signs of a struggle in the bedroom. There is broken glass on the floor, Ainsley's possessions thrown haphazardly around the room, and [[blood spatters]] across the room. There is a ladder leaning against the house, right outside Ainsley's window. There is mud on the rungs, but there are no footsteps leading to or away from the house. The killer must have covered their [[tracks->murder]]. A small crowd of party-goers have returned to the mansion for questioning. You find a beautfiul young woman who asks to remain anonymous. You ask her if there was anything funny about the food. She pauses for a moment, thinking, then says,
"You know, the shrimp puffs tasted kind of funny. I left the party early, because my stomach wasn't feeling too well."
You think the shrimp puffs might have been posioned.
You [[thank]] her.You pull the boy off to the side. He looks nervous, but determined.
"I'm willing to do anything I can to help find Ainsley's killer."
You smile. "Great. First things first: I know the music was loud. Did you by any chance hear anything out of the ordinary?"
The boy starts to shake his head then stops himself.
"[[Actually]]...""Around 1:30 in the morning, I saw Ainsley arguing with someone I've never seen before. She pulled the person away with her. I was really drunk and kind of curious, so I followed. Then I heard the screaming start, and that's when I ran away. I should have helped her. I could have saved her."
You grit your teeth and shake your head. You pat him on the shoulder.
"It's not your fault."
The boy looks up at you with tears shining in his eyes. You thank him for his [[time]]. There is a [[huge fridge]], [[dirty dishes]], and a [[cabinet]] wide open under the sink You open the fridge, but there's nothing too unusual in here: just some [[left-overs]] from the party and [[a half-full bottle of wine]].You put on a glove you found laying on the counter and poke through the dishes with your nose turned up. For rich people, they sure know how to leave a mess. There is nothing [[unusual here->poking around]].You glance down in the cabinet and you immediately spot a box of rat poision. Your eyes widen. You pick up the box, and notice it's empty. You place the bag in your backpack. [[Defintiely suspicious->Walden Mansion]].He looks at you disdainfully, but introduces himself as Daxx Williams, Ainsley's boyfriend. He says he barely saw her all [[night]]."You barely saw your girlfriend all night, at a party celebrating her birthday?" you asked.
Daxx sighs and tells you he had suspicions that Ainsley was [[cheating]] on him.You run your hand through your hair and clear your throat. This certainly sounds like motive.
"Did you...want to hurt Ainsley?" you ask.
Daxx curls his lip at you. "I would never hurt Ainsley. I [[loved her]]."Daxx shakes his head. He admits that he thought Ainsley was the love of his life. He feared his suspicions were confirmed when he saw Ainsley talking to a [[total stranger]] at the party, and she vanished with them. He left not too long after that, too heart-broken to even try to confront her. You wonder if anyone else has this [[mystery figure->guests]].Out in the garden, you bump into Margot Walden. She is smoking a cigarette. She is glaring at [[you]].The medical examiner's report confirmed that Ainsley's had been slashed with a very sharp knife, but that blood loss was not her cause of death. This has still not been [[revealed->murder]]. Olivia looks you up and down suspiciously, then waves the rest of the group off so she can talk to your privately. She steps closer to you, sizing you up.
"Did you notice anything unsual about Ainsley during the party?" you ask.
Olivia [[sighs]]. "Ainsley has been acting weird for a while. She kept talking about how 'in love' she was, but she had never talked about Daxx like that before. He was convinved she was cheating on him, and I'm starting to think he was right."
You swallow hard and clear your throat.
"Why do you think [[that]]?"Olivia shrugs. "I saw Ainsley talking to someone last night. I had never seen them before, but they seemed very comfortable with each other. Well, until they started [[fighting]], that is."You look at Olivia in surprise. "Did you by any chance hear what they were fighting about?"
Olivia shakes her head. "No. They were too far away. But I know I wasn't the only one who saw [[them]] and was worried about it.""Oh?" you ask. "Who else saw them?"
Olivia glances around nervously, then leans closer to you so she can whisper...
"[[Ainsley's mom]].""Can I help you?" she asks in a nasty voice. You bristle.
"I'm just trying to help." You tell her. She rolls her eyes.
"What do you really think you're doing [[here]]?"You shift uncomfortably. You decide to try a different tactic.
"I'm very sorry for your loss, Mrs. Walden. I'm sure Ainsley was a lovely girl."
Margot laughs angrily. "Doesn't matter now, does it? She's [[dead]]."You roll your neck from side to side, trying to remain calm.
"Mrs. Walden, I'm certain they'll find Ainsley's killer."
Mrs. Walden takes a long drag of her cigarette.
"And how could you possibly [[know]] that?""I have a lot of faith in the local law enforcement. Besides, she's a Walden who's neck was snapped. I'm sure they'll put all their time into finding her killer."
Margot Walden [[freezes]]."How...how did you know her neck was snapped? That information hasn't been released to the public yet."
[[Fear]] courses through your body. You [[stare]] at Margot Walden.You are the killer. You made Ainsley Walden fall in love with her, knowing you only wanted her for her money. You had planned to marry her, then have her tragically die after your first year of marriage. You would get everything.
But she figured out you didn't really love her, and she was going to leave you. You were the mysterious stranger everyone saw arguing with her last night. You are the person she dragged away.
She dragged you to her bedroom, and you lost your temper. It wasn't your fault. She was trying to ruin your life.
You were just doing what you had [[to->freezes]]. "I did what I had to, Mrs. Walden."
Her eyes widen with horror.
"You...you killed my [[daughter]]!"She starts to run, but you stop her. You sigh heavily. You didn't want it to come to this, but you must always put yourself [[first]]. You wrestle Margot Walden to the ground. She tries to call out, but you reach into your backpack and pull out the rat posion. You dump it into her [[mouth]]. "It didn't have to end like this," you whisper to her. "All Ainsley had to do was marry me. But she refused."
Margot Walden cries silently. You sigh, your shoulders sagging.
"I'm sorry it had to end this [[way]]."You [[snap]] her neck, too. Just like you did with Ainsley. You get up quietly, looking around. No one has seen. No one knows what you did.
You leave Margot Walden's body and slowly walk away.
You do not look back. You will never look [[back]].The [[end->Welcome...]].
[[Explanation]].I wanted to write a murder mystery with the twist being the player was the murderer. I always imagined the mother being the one who figured out what the killer had done, and then the killer is forced to kill the mother, too. The killer then walks off, thinking their time with the Walden family is over. Well, that was a dead end. [[Go back->Welcome...]] and try again. This is all Olivia knows. [[Try again->Welcome...]].This is all she knows. [[Go back->Welcome...]].A bright eyed girl from the group stares at you.
"Can we help you?" she asks, her voice clearly annoyed. You try to hide your agitation.
"You know what? [[No thanks->guests]]."You pick up the left-overs and realize they don't smell the best.
Gagging, you put the container back [[down->poking around]].You open the top of the bottle and sniff. It still smells alright.
Should you take a sip...?
[[Yes]]. You [[return->poking around]] the bottle to the shelf.You take a big chug out of the wine, and immediately spit it into the sink. It did not taste as good as it smelled.
You wipe your mouth, putting the bottle [[down->poking around]].