Author's Note: This is an alternate ending to the Nancy Drew PC game The Final Scene. If you haven't played it, it might not be a good idea to read this. I don't know if this is the right place to post this story, but the category is Nancy Drew, so that works for me. I originally posted this a year ago on HerInteractive (dot) com under the username Godsgirl82. Anyway, please read and review! This is old, and I haven't edited this since I wrote it. So if you have any constructive criticism, go for it:)

Light's Out!

"Whew!" Nancy nearly collapsed as she exited the cabinet. "That was really close. Too close." For a moment, she forgot what she was in there to do. "Oh, the slide! Right." She put the slide in the projector and fumbled with the focusing knob until plop! It came right off.

"Oh, where did it go?" Nancy thought to herself as she knelt on the floor, trying to see through the inky blackness. Finally, her fingers enclosed around a hard, metal object. "Bingo!" But when she pulled her hand back, Nancy noticed something: a button. It was green with leaves etched on it. Nancy made a mental note to find out to whom it belonged. She pocketed the button and began her task. "Come on, focus. There, I got it!" Up on the screen there was a map, but not just any map; Nancy counted three secret passageways. She hurriedly took the slide out of the projector and hid it in the false bottom of her purse.

But as she walked out of the projector room, someone tapped her shoulder.

"Nancy?"

Nancy whirled around. "Brady? Aren't you supposed to be at the press conference?"

"Yeah, but I was already interviewed and the only thing I'd have to do was stand around. So I came to see where you were and what you were doing," Brady gave Nancy a half-smile.

Nancy's mind was working overtime, analyzing his words, wondering if they meant that he was trying to keep her in sight so she doesn't get hot on his trail, or if he's just being friendly. So all she said was, "Oh."

"Right now they're talking to that Nick Falcone dude," Brady said in obvious disgust.

"What's wrong with Nicholas?" Nancy asked innocently.

"He's a troublemaker! Can't you see that?" Brady practically exploded, but struggled for control of his composure. Nancy waited patiently.

"Nancy—" Brady began, but was interrupted by Simone.

"Brady?! What are you doing? You're supposed to be out there. Reporters have questions for you!" Simone grabbed his arm and dragged him outside before he could say a word.

"I'm glad she's not my manager," Nancy thought to herself with a smile. "Next stop would be…Simone's dressing room." She went through the passageway to the room and immediately began snooping. "Hmmmm, there's nothing here." She was about to leave when her gaze fell on Simone's huge purse. Light bulb! Nancy rummaged through it, reading her notepad, examining her cell phone, and….wait! There was a digital camera. She clicked through pictures of Simone's dog, her boyfriend, and…Maya? Nancy quickly hit the Back button and stared at the picture. No, it wasn't Maya in person.

"That's Maya's ID badge!"

Footsteps! Nancy wildly looked around for a place to hide (once again). It sounded like someone was coming through the wardrobe, so she couldn't hide there. Quickly, but quietly, Nancy headed for the door and left. Once out, she heaved a great sigh of relief and decided to look around Brady's dressing room again. First, she went through his closet.

"Jeans, jeans, more jeans, red shirt, green shirt…wait, back to the green shirt," Nancy was muttering to herself again. She pulled out the button she had in her pocket. Perfect match.

"Nice to see you again so soon," said a voice behind her. Of course, Brady. It was beginning to bug Nancy that he was always popping up when she least wanted him.

"Oh, hey Brady."

"Is there any explanation as to why you're going through my closet," Brady asked, a teasing note in his voice.

"And is there any explanation as to why you're not where Simone wants you to be, answering questions from the public?" Nancy sweetly retorted.

Brady laughed. "All right, Nancy. You got me this time." Nancy waited for his explanation, but none came.

"So why are you here?" Nancy asked, totally confused.

"To see what you're up to," he said, totally nonchalant. Nancy rolled her eyes, and inwardly thought, "Okay, I can't take much more of this." Aloud, she confronted him. "I found your button." Oops, that was not how it was supposed to come out.

"Why, thank you," Brady said and quickly grabbed it from her hand. "I should have known you would figure it out." He hung his head.
"What?" Nancy thought, now even more confused. Was Brady about to confess?

"I—I like you, Nancy," Brady admitted, looking downward. "You're perfect: you're smart, sweet, caring, mysterious, and—and beautiful." Nancy gasped louder than she intended.

"You don't treat me like those boy-crazy fans," Brady continued. Nancy stifled a giggle as she thought of Bess, who would absolutely die for Brady Armstrong—the Brady Armstrong—to say all this to her.

"I know I'm probably wasting my breath, because I checked around to see if you're taken. And you are."

Nancy was taken off guard for a moment, but for one moment only because she knew that it was possible that this was a ruse to let her guard down. She wouldn't give in.

"Could—could I talk to you…later?" Nancy asked carefully. Brady gave her a big, radiant smile. "Sure." And with that, he was gone. For the next half hour, as she explored the rest of the rooms in the theatre, she debated whether Brady's affections were genuine. Then she realized that he had deliberately switched topics after she mentioned the button. "So that button is an important clue," Nancy thought. Then her mind flew to the slide. The secret passageways! It took her a little while, but finally she found the first one. It was under the basement.

"I'm glad I brought my flashlight," Nancy said out loud.

"But you won't be needing it," someone said behind her, and before Nancy could do anything, something hit her hard, and she blacked out.

Some time later, Nancy woke up. The room was still spinning and it took her a moment to realize what had happened. She reached to push her hair out of her face, but to her chagrin, Nancy found that she was bound and gagged. Her memory came back to her full force. Quickly, she looked around the room to see if she knew where she was.
"This must be another secret passageway!" Nancy thought. Then she heard a groan. Maya! She was bound and gagged also at the other side of the small room. Nancy fished around in her pockets--as much as the ropes would let her, anyway--for something, anything that would get both her and Maya out of there before whoever it was decided to finish the job. A piece of lint, paper clip, her Wal-mart coupon (so that's where that was!), and...a-ha! Nancy pulled out a small pocketknife and immediately began cutting her bonds. It took her an hour to get herself and Maya free. She realized that Maya was still in shock and not completely herself. Before she and Maya could leave, the door opened. Nancy gasped when she saw who stood in front of her.

"Nick! Out of all the lousy, rotten things to do--"Nancy blurted out, but Nick interrupted her.

"Nancy? Maya? What are you two doing here?" He looked as surprised to see them as they were to see him. Nick looked at Nancy. "What happened to you? And why are your wrists bleeding?"

"As if you didn't know." This was Maya's first contribution to the conversation.

"No, really. I don't." Nick's gaze kept shifting between the two girls.

"Then why else would you be here if you weren't trying to stop us from getting away?" Nancy asked him.

"Getting away? What?" Nick sat down on a nearby crate. Nancy looked at him curiously, deciding if she should believe him. She gave him the benefit of the doubt.

"We were kidnapped, Nick, by someone and we thought he or she was you when you burst in on us," Nancy patiently explained. "After all, what other reason would you have for being here?" She watched his face to see what emotions would cross his face, and to her relief, the only one was concern.

"I see how you would think that, but believe me, Nancy, when I say I didn't do it!"

She thought a moment and replied, "All right. I believe you. Now we need to get Maya out of here before--"

"Oh, I see you brought your little friend so you can have a party! How quaint! But now I'm adding another one," someone said, and Brady was harshly pushed into the room. Before anyone could stop him or her, or even see who it was, the door was shut and bolted.

The group was speechless. What had just happened?
"That was...weird." Brady's voice brought everyone back to reality. Nancy turned to the boy. He was still on the floor where he was pushed, but he was conscious.
"What happened?" he asked, his voice and face full of confusion.
By this time, Maya was almost back to herself.
"Oh...my...GOSH! You're Brady Armstrong!" she squealed. Nancy laid a hand on Maya's arm. "I really don't think this is the time--"
"I was supposed to interview you! May I have your autograph? What's your favorite color? Do you like fish? Have you--"
"Maya, please!" Nancy said. "We're kind of in a situation here."
"Oooooh," Maya whispered.
"Now how do you propose we get out of this, Nancy?" Nick asked the teen detective.
"Let me think," Nancy replied.
"We could--" Maya began.
"Sh!" Brady interrupted her. "Let Nancy think!"
"Thanks, Brady, but I don't think that's necessary." Nancy gave him a weak smile.
The movie star immediately quieted.
"Maybe he does actually like me," Nancy thought to herself. "Wow, wouldn't that be something to tell Bess and George."
"Tell them what?" Nick asked. Nancy blushed from embarrassment. Oops! She'd spoken the last bit of her thoughts out loud!
"Uh, how we escape...when we think of a plan," she said quickly, trying to cover for her slip.
"All right, then," Nick said, smiling at her. "Let's think of a plan to get out of here. Fight the power!"

"Okay, Nancy, Brady, Nick, you know what to do," Maya said. The others nodded. Brady climbed onto Nick's shoulders, Nancy climbed onto his, and Maya climbed onto Nancy's.
"Got it!" Maya reached up and unlocked the hatch door in the ceiling. She climbed up there and pulled Nancy up right behind her. But then she closed the door before helping Nick and Brady up.
"Maya? What's this about?" Nancy asked her.
"Nothing. I just want you to go on ahead and explore the passageway up here. Don't worry. I'll help Nick and Brady." Maya smiled. Nancy smiled back.
"All right. Good thing I brought a new flashlight." Maya went back to the hatch and grabbed Brady's hand. Nancy looked back and laughed when she saw Maya taking a picture of her helping Brady. She found a door and went inside. The sleuth took a step forward but froze. What was that sound? Click! She whirled around. Oh, no! She was locked in!

Nancy banged on the door. "Let me out! Nick! Brady! Maya! HELP!" Either all of them were ignoring her pleas or they couldn't hear her. She hoped the second option was right. Nancy turned on her flashlight. It was the rest of the second secret passageway! She walked all the way to the end of it, tapping on walls, looking for some kind of exit. Much to her chagrin, she found nothing...until she looked up. Another hatch! It took her a little while, but she finally climbed up to it. Nancy took one look in the room and gasped.

"Brady? Nick? What happened?" Both of the young men were tied (but not gagged) and seemed delirious.
"Nancy?" Brady mumbled, raising his head a bit.
"Yes, yes, Brady. It's me, Nancy," she looked at him, hoping for a response. None came. Nancy turned to Nick. His eyes were still closed.
"Oh, no. I think they're both drugged!" Nancy cried.
"You're right. Now they won't get out, and unfortunately, you won't either," said a voice behind her. Nancy whirled around and her eyes widened in shock and disbelief.

"Maya?"
The journalist smiled sweetly. "Hello, Nancy."
Nancy just gave her a confused look. The sweet smile faded.
"You mean you haven't figured it out yet?"
"No. Maya--"
"I kidnapped myself! Well, of course Simone helped. She got rid of Joseph when he started poking around. And now I'm honored to get rid of you." Maya took a step forward.
"But why? Why would you want to kidnap yourself?"
"Since you're not going to be telling anyone else this, I'll start from the beginning. Simone is my friend's aunt so we met and became instant friends. Then she came to me with a plan about four months ago. She said Joseph was the owner of the theatre but there was something hidden in it. They were going to demolish this building so if something happened to an innocent person--that would be me--they would have to stop the demolition. And if it looked like a kidnapping, she would get good publicity for herself and Brady. That's where Brady came in. He knew, but was blackmailed to never tell. He turned on us by helping you, so we took drastic measures. Brady was hanging out with Nick also lately, so we thought he knew something. Then you showed up. So if Simone and I took all of you out while Simone "finds" me and the demolition continues, everything would be perfect. Now it's time. Light's out, Nancy!" Maya came toward her, positioned to strangle.

Nancy froze for a moment, unsure of what to do. After all, this was her friend. But what kind of friend would want to kill you? She looked around the room. There's got to be a way out of here! Maya was almost at her throat. Nancy kicked her shin and shoved her away, not wanting to hurt her too badly. Maya's back hit the wall and she slid down, moaning. Nancy hurriedly untied and ungagged the boys, but Maya wasn't finished yet. She threw the nearest object--a magician's book--at her head, which sent Nancy reeling to the floor. She jumped back up and dragged Nick and Brady to the door. Nick woke up with a start. He quickly comprehended the situation they were in and smacked Brady on the head to wake him up. Now Maya was the one with terror in her eyes. Two strong guys and a smart girl would be no match for her.
"Brady, you run and call 911," Nancy told him. "Nick, watch Maya. I have to catch Simone." She ran out the door and saw Simone carrying some luggage outside her dressing room. Seeing Nancy, she ran as fast as she could with her large suitcases. The teen detective was in pursuit.

The luggage was bogging Simone down, so she eventually slowed down enough to unintentionally let Nancy catch up.

"Nobody move!" It was Brady with the police. Simone slowly put the bags down and lifted her hands up in surrender. Nancy gave Brady a high-five. Team Nancy had cracked the case!

Dear Dad,

Wow! This was one of the strangest cases I've ever worked on. I can't believe that Maya was actually working with Simone on this whole thing! The one thing they didn't count on was me. They were right about the treasure anyway. The police found a small velvet bag filled with jewels in one of Simone's suitcases. Can you believe it? Nick has won more people to his cause, including me. Brady's new movie has been selling out like crazy. Both want to keep in touch with me! Bess is going to go crazy when she hears that Brady is a new friend. Don't say anything, though. I want to tell her so I can see her face! Anyway, I'm coming home soon. I don't think I'm going to have any more cases for a while. Love you!

Nancy

EPILOGUE:

Nancy was wrong in her letter. She got a new case just a few weeks later. When she was hired as an assistant curator to the Beech Hill Museum, she became involved in another mystery…Secret of the Scarlet Hand