• Halloween 2019 IF,  Interactive Fiction

    Halloween I.F – “A Little Night Magic” – Day 12

    [Please read the instructions before jumping in!]

    “No, I think everything you suggested is fine,” Viv agreed. “We could ask the other neighbours some things too, if they’re around. We don’t have to give specifics or anything, just say you got jumped and see if they have heard anything. We could ask about the janitor too. He was… weird. Creepy.”

    “I’d say he’s more than creepy,” Thys said, a little confused.

    Viv’s brows raised. “Wait, you know him?”

    “Not really. I’m sorry if it sounds rude, but I haven’t really talked to the janitor, just…” Thys shrugged. “You said he was there right after the incident. And then the garbage room was cleaned out. So what happened to the body of whoever was attacked?”

    Suddenly nervous, Viv bit her thumbnail. “Are you sure that person died? You interrupted the attack and the attacker chased you. I know you asked the flies, but could they be wrong? There was a lot of rotting this-and-that in the garbage room when I went down.”

    “It’s possible,” Thys admitted, though they didn’t seem convinced. “But even so, the garbage all being taken out overnight? Even if the janitor worked in the evening, most garbage pickup is early in the morning. Unless the janitor called it in especially to happen then, or had a way of getting rid of it himself…?”

    “Ugh, point,” Viv said. “So right now, he’s suspect number one. I guess we find out as much as we can about him.”

  • Halloween 2019 IF,  Interactive Fiction

    Halloween I.F – “A Little Night Magic” – Day 11

    [Please read the instructions before jumping in!]

    They were all silent a moment, considering their options. Finally, Viv sighed.

    “I think,” she began, “that you might be right and we should go to bed. For one thing, we probably want to talk to a bunch of the neighbours to hear what they think, and… I mean, while some of them are probably night-dwellers, most of them aren’t going to want to be disturbed at midnight.”

    “True,” Dandelion said. “Can you trust them?”

    He seemed to be asking them both; Thys shrugged. “Some of them, I think so,” they said. “I don’t know everyone beyond seeing them in passing, though.”

    “I think we can at least talk to Varsha,” Viv said. “She’s got an alibi, since she was already working at the Good Neighbours at the time. And we can just see what other people think if we run into them, right? We don’t have to directly mention a murder, obviously.”

    “True,” Thysania said. And then, a little reluctantly, “And… I am low on energy. And you are actively being drained. Even if it is not the ideal situation for either of us to rest, I imagine we may be able to sleep after all.”

    “Sounds good,” Dandelion said. “Then, may I suggest we get away from this murder site and up to your apartments?”

  • Halloween 2019 IF,  Interactive Fiction

    Halloween I.F – “A Little Night Magic” – Day 10

    [Please read the instructions before jumping in!]

    “I think,”  Viv said slowly, “that it’d be best if Thys and I stayed in one apartment, at least for tonight. For one thing, we know the connection is affected by distance, so staying close together while they’re still recovering is probably for the best.”

    “And,” Dandelion said grimly, “if something comes for them again, you think you can help fight it off?”

    They both looked at her with mild expectation. She blanched. “I mean, I don’t think… I doubt I’d be much good in a fight, but maybe whatever it is would be less likely to make a move while we’re together?”

    “I think you’re right,” Thys said. They were pondering the facade of the building, their brow knit tight. Viv realized that sometime during their walk, Thys had wound their antennae around their head like a crown. “I don’t know if it was coming after me specifically, but the call seemed… seemed focused on me. Even if I saw it attacking someone else.”

  • Halloween 2019 IF,  Interactive Fiction

    Halloween I.F – “A Little Night Magic” – Day 9

    [Please read the instructions before jumping in!]

    Understanding dawned.

    Thysania was the moth that Viv had rescued from her cats this morning. Fae were known to be shapeshifters; they were infamous for it. If Thysania was one of those—no, Viv couldn’t even entertain anything else, not now. Thysania was that moth. It would explain why Thys had recognized her, why they so clearly trusted Viv even when Viv had no idea who they were.

    “I already offered to give you energy, didn’t I?” Viv blurted out. “Just, at the time, I thought you needed sugar water.”

    Isaac and Dandelion were staring at her like she was crazy—but Thysania grinned, mouth dark on the inside. Viv couldn’t tell if they had any teeth or if their mouth, like their eyes, was just a black hole.

    “You did,” Thysania said. “You offered.”

  • Halloween 2019 IF,  Interactive Fiction

    Halloween I.F – “A Little Night Magic” – Day 8

    [Please read the instructions before jumping in!]

    “I’m not going to—I’m not going to leave after they asked for me,” Viv said, horrified. Then, hurriedly, when the older witch looked up, “If that’s all right? Just, Thysania seems scared, and if I can help by just being here, I should.”

    “Fair enough,” Isaac said, his voice even. “Stay close, then, but just make sure you stay out of the way. I need room.” 

    It made sense. He’d started some basic healing magic, but depending on what was going on, he might need to set up a circle. Or just get personal information, honestly; Viv wasn’t sure what was covered under PHIPA in the case of a medical professional gathering private information while giving emergency care in a public space, but even if it wasn’t covered, it was definitely rude to eavesdrop on.

    “I’ll be—” She looked around, saw one of the couches nearby and in Thysania’s line of sight, and gestured to it. “I’ll be right there. Okay, Thysania?”

    Thysania hummed softly, but otherwise didn’t answer.

    Viv headed to the couch, then startled as Dandelion joined her there, slinging himself onto the couch with a squeak of leather pants on pleather cushion. It was such an incongruous sound in the somber moment that she had to bite back an inappropriate giggle.