Game:Alone in the dark/Edward Carnby

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On my door, a dull brass plate says Private detective. Or, rather, it used to. We're in a rough neighbourhood, and anything that looks like it might be of the slightest value gets stolen as soon as your back is turned. I replaced it with a hand written sign a while ago saying Private detactive under which someone had written in after me Learn how to spell. Dick!

The proofreaders in this neighbourhood get rougher every day.

I'd love to be able to move from the neighbourhood, but of course in order to do that I would need money, and in order to get that I'd have to get a job, and people don't often hire detectives who have hand written signs on their doors. I did get a contact from an antique dealer called Emily Hartwood. I'm not too sure how she managed to find my number, however I wasn't about to complain. I slipped into my least dirty shirt and got to her shop as fast as I could. I was expecting something sordid - not in regards to the antique shop, but in regards to the case. Watching re-runs of Antique Roadshow had taught me that the world of antiques was not as exciting as you'd expect.

I am often wrong in my surmises, and this time was no exception. What I was asked to do was visit a property called Dercretin and investigate the death of her Uncle, J Hartwood, who had apparently hanged himself in the loft. I asked if her Uncle was well-hung, but she didn't seem to be in the mood for polite humour.

The coroner concluded it was a clear-cut case of suicide, but Ms Hartwood suspected otherwise. Her Uncle, who was somewhat of a recluse, had sent her a cryptic letter just prior to his death. She said that the house was full of traps and surprises, and in the letter were clues as to how to overcome these. She handed me the letter and a key to the property. I put both of these in my pocket, determined to read the letter thoroughly later.

I've been reading up on the history of the old house; it's the kind of place ghosts run away from in terror. Grisly murders, curses, lunacy... Luckily, lunacy makes me smile, so this is my idea of a paid vacation.

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