By KENNETH HAND
August 19, 2010
Clue: Murder At the Beach House is my latest Clue mystery and is, as you will quickly notice, somewhat longer than my last two mysteries. Deadly Desserts and Clue: Morning At the Pool are, in a manner of speaking, "mini-mysteries" that are intended for swift reading. To cap off the summer, I have decided to write a more substantial fanfic, which has been a long time coming. Please note the difference in rooms, as this mystery shall take place at the beach house, and not Boddy Mansion. Enjoy!
Ms. Scarlet Col. Mustard Mrs. White Mr. Green Mrs. Peacock Prof. Plum
Knife Revolver Rope Wrench Lead Pipe Candlestick
Lounge Dining Room Kitchen Bedroom #1 Bedroom #2 Bedroom #3 Bedroom #4 Bedroom #5 Bedroom #6
"Mrs. White!" Mr. Green called, even more cranky than usual. "Can you help me down the stairs with these suitcases, please? You know about my hernia."
Mrs. White was rushing around Boddy Mansion, helping Mr. Boddy's weekend guests with their suitcases and listening to them all complain about the forthcoming two-hour drive up north to Mr. Boddy's beach house. To Mr. Boddy himself, the guests appeared to be excited and anxious to head up north, but behind his back they were railing on about what an inconvenience the entire trip would be.
Appearing at the top of the staircase in the Hall, Mrs. White snatched Mr. Green's olive suitcases out of his hands, and quickly took them down. 'As if you can't carry your own bags, you rotten dog,' she thought. 'Especially since your hernia operation was three years ago.'
"Thank you," Mr. Green said to Mrs. White with a smirk as he descended the stairs.
Spotting the Wrench on the wooden bench by the front door, Mr. Green waited for Mrs.
White to leave the room and then snapped it up. If things were to get ugly this weekend, he would at least have protection.
"Where are you, Mrs. White?" Mrs. Peacock drawled from the Lounge, where she had slipped a long Lead Pipe into her navy blue tapestry handbag. The pipe had made the bag unusually heavy, and Mrs. Peacock was having trouble carrying it.
Mrs. White appeared at the door. "What is it now, Mrs. Peacock?" she asked. Mrs.
"How rude!" she declared. "I need help carrying this handbag to the door. I packed it tight with sleeping salts, which I am certain I will need this weekend."
'Yeah, right,' Mrs. White thought, and carried the handbag to the hall, where Ms.
Scarlet was flirting with Mr. Boddy.
"Oh, Reginald," she cooed, "I simply cannot wait to hit the beach."
"I'm sure we'll have a marvellous time, Ms. Scarlet," Mr. Boddy responded, in his perpetually cheerful mood.
Ms. Scarlet opened her heavily made-up eyes wide. "We will! And perhaps, tonight,
we will take a stroll on the white sand, just you and I. I'm bringing along a Candlestick to light the way, in case the mood should strike us."
"Excuse me, Ms. Scarlet," Professor Plum said as he walked by Ms. Scarlet with an enormous leather valise. Unfortunately, he didn't see the Rope on the floor in front of him. He tripped on it and fell face-first into Ms. Scarlet, who fell into Mr. Boddy. They all landed with a THUD. In all the confusion, the guest with the Lead Pipe switched her weapon for the Rope, deciding it would be lighter to carry.
Professor Plum snatched up the Lead Pipe from where it was dropped on the floor.
'This will be perfect!' he thought.
"Well now, gang, we're already running late!" Colonel Mustard announced as he descended the staircase with his own mustard yellow suitcase. His suitcase contained two weapons, but was not particularly heavy. "We ought to shove off!"
'I ought to shove you into a snakepit,' Mrs. White thought, as she carried Ms.
Scarlet's suitcase to the awaiting stretch limousine. The guests followed her out,
Ms. Scarlet on Mr. Boddy's arm, and entered the limo. Mrs. White would be driving the two hours to Boddy Beach House.
Boddy Beach House was an art-deco style single-storey beach house in Boddy Harbour. The Boddy family was so affluent and had always been so important politically in the area that the town was named after it. The guests were all relieved to arrive, as they had been arguing the whole way up. Ms. Scarlet had had three glasses of champagne in the limo and accused Mrs. Peacock of being an old biddy; Mr. Green attempted to steal the Knife out of Colonel Mustard's suitcase as Mustard napped, prompting Mustard to challenge Green to a duel; and Mrs. White had to pull over to clean up after Professor Plum, who had spilled a nasty-smelling formula all over the empty seat next to him. Upon arrival, the guests all rolled out of the car, grumpy and ready to settle in to their rooms.
Mr. Boddy assisted Mrs. White with the suitcases into the house, and as it was already six o'clock, Mrs. White headed for the Kitchen to start dinner. Mr. Boddy, meanwhile,
showed the guests to their respective bedrooms: Colonel Mustard was in Bedroom #1,
Professor Plum in Bedroom #2, Ms. Scarlet in Bedroom #3, Mrs. Peacock in Bedroom #4,
and Mr. Green in Bedroom #5. Mrs. White would be in Bedroom #6, and Mr. Boddy was taking the loft upstairs, which none of the guests could reach because none of them wanted to climb the ladder which led to it.
"I don't like my bedroom," Ms. Scarlet whined. "The walls are dark purple. I can't sleep in a room like this!" After asking all the other guests, the guest with the Rope finally agreed to switch with her, but accidentally left the Rope in her original bedroom.
A half-hour later, the guests emerged from their bedrooms and joined Mr. Boddy in the Lounge, where he was serving drinks and jovially talking about the history of Boddy Beach House.
"The original house was built in 1912," Mr. Boddy explained, "But was burned down under mysterious circumstances in 1939 and had to be rebuilt after the war."
"My great-aunt, Mammie Mustard, was staying here that year, if I remember correctly,"
Colonel Mustard put in.
"That is probably true," Mr. Boddy chortled. "The Boddys have always been notorious entertainers, and the Mustards are long-time friends of the Boddys."
"I remember hearing about a series of disappearances up here around that time, as well," Ms. Scarlet said, and took a sip of her champagne. "My grandparents, Sam and Selena Scarlet, had a house in a neighbouring town."
"And that house is still in the Scarlet name, if I'm not mistaken," Mrs. Peacock said slyly. Ms. Scarlet blushed.
"Oh, I don't know," Ms. Scarlet said. "One of my sisters might have one up here. I'm not sure."
"Hhmm," Mrs. Peacock said. "My mother, Petunia Peacock, disappeared in Boddy Harbour while having her own house built, around the same time the original Boddy Beach House burned down."
The guests continued to discuss the history of Boddy Beach House and Boddy Harbour.
During the conversation, a guest left the Lounge on the pretext of going to the washroom, but instead slipped into nearby Bedroom #1 and stole the Knife. She then headed for Bedroom #4 to steal the weapon out of that room, but just then Mrs. White called the guests for dinner, so the guest had to head for the Dining Room.
"The food looks divine, Mrs. White," said Colonel Mustard. "I'm hungry as a horse,
as they say."
"Thank you," Mrs. White said politely, and then, pretending to cough, sneered at Colonel Mustard behind her hand.
The guests hungrily ate up the peasant Mrs. White had prepared. As they ate, one guest convinced the guest with the Wrench to switch bedrooms.
"I would appreciate it," the first guest said. "That bedroom is closer to the back door, in case I wish to go out in the night to watch the stars through a lens I put in the Lead Pipe."
After dinner, the guests headed their separate ways. Mrs. White cleaned up the Dining Room and went to her bedroom, but decided her mattress was too firm and persuaded the only other guest who had not previously changed bedrooms to switch with her. The guest with whom Mrs. White switched rooms forgot his or her weapon,
and so Mrs. White kept it.
Mrs. Peacock and Mr. Green returned to the Lounge, where they turned on a movie on the ancient television and VCR. About fifteen minutes into the movie, Mr. Green fell asleep and started snoring. Mrs. Peacock considered snoring to be the height of rudeness, so rather than waking Mr. Green up, she left the room to sit in the Dining Room.
In the Kitchen, Ms. Scarlet was shamelessly flirting with Mr. Boddy. "You know,
Reginald," she slurred, nearly spilling her glass of champagne, "we could be just naughty and take a walk on the beach. No one would notice."
"But what about the other guests?" Mr. Boddy asked, concerned. "No, I think we'd do far better to stay here, Ms. Scarlet." And he left the room to sit in the Dining Room with Mrs. Peacock.
"Drat!" Ms. Scarlet said, and took another swig of her champagne. She, too, left the Kitchen.
Professor Plum, meanwhile, had set up the makeshift telescope he had created with the Lead Pipe outside on the deck. Unfortunately for him, the sky was overcast,
and he couldn't see a single star. Instead, he took to looking for boats on the water, until it started to rain.
"I suppose I'll have to wait for another night to test out the telescope," he said.
He left the Lead Pipe on the deck railing and returned inside. Suddenly, the wind picked up, and the Lead Pipe rolled off the railing and into the sand on the beach,
where it would remain until the following day.
Inside Boddy Beach House, a male guest, realizing he no longer had a weapon, was snooping through empty bedrooms trying to find another one. In Bedroom #3, he found two weapons, and took the blunt one.
In the Lounge, Mr. Green woke up, and found another guest (not Mrs. Peacock)
watching the movie with him. The guest engaged in conversation with Mr. Green about Boddy Harbour, and Mr. Green mentioned his half-uncle Greg.
"In the thirties, he had a successful business venture running in these parts with the Scarlets," Mr. Green told the guest. "That is, until Petunia Peacock forced a takeover with the help of the Boddy family. They destroyed the business, and they destroyed uncle Greg!"
The guest then left the room and went to his bedroom.
"I could have sworn I had a weapon in here," he said. "I was using it earlier." He departed his bedroom and entered the Dining Room, where Mrs. Peacock was whispering something to Mr. Boddy, which was making him look uncomfortable.
"Sorry to interrupt," the guest said, and Mr. Boddy whirled around. He chuckled.
"No problem at all!" Mr. Boddy said. "How are you enjoying your evening?"
Mrs. Peacock, annoyed at not being able to finish what she had been whispering to Mr. Boddy, left the room. In the Kitchen, she encountered Mrs. White, who had slipped a brandy.
"I would watch what you say to Mr. Boddy, or Green or Scarlet might notice," Mrs.
"I would watch how much of that brandy you sneak, or Boddy might notice," Mrs.
Peacock retorted. She helped herself to a brandy and took it to her bedroom. When she was passing by the Lounge, she noticed Ms. Scarlet talking to another guest in a hushed tone.
The only male guest without a weapon, meanwhile, stole the Revolver from a bedroom, but abruptly forgot he had it and went to sleep.
Eventually, one by one, the guests all retired to bed. All but one guest had a weapon.
In the morning, four guests and Mr. Boddy awoke to Mrs. White shrieking. She was standing at the doorway to Ms. Scarlet's bedroom. Ms. Scarlet had been killed in the night, but not with a blunt weapon.
WHO DID IT? WHERE? WITH WHAT? AND WHAT WAS THE MOTIVE?