Villa Dining Room
Go check out what happened in the rest area of the dining room!
The classical hall's original elegance and quiet atmosphere are now replaced with unsettled murmurs.
The guests in the crowd look and whisper at one another, mostly with frightened eyes.
Squeezing into the crowd, you see the source of the disturbance.
Elijah Yin is lying on the ground with his eyes closed. Standing not far from him is Shantel Pan, so frightened that her face is almost distorted.
Mr. Qian: Boss! Boss, what happened!? Boss!
Mr. Qian: Shantel Pan!! What did you do to our boss!?
Mr. Qian, Elijah Yin's right-hand man, is squatting on the ground. He has a look of terror on his face as he shakes his boss' body.
However, Elijah Yin shows no response.
Shantel Pan: Nonsense, I didn't do anything!
Shantel Pan: Elijah suddenly fell over. I watched him as he fell. I didn't touch him!
Mr. Qian: It must have been you. You must have provoked our boss.
Mr. Qian: Our boss has a weak heart. His body must have been acting up after your argument with him!
Mr. Qian: I'm telling you, if anything happens to our boss, you will never hear the end of it from our entire company!
Shantel Pan: That is defamation! I will hire an attorney to sue you!
Artem: Everyone, please calm down.
Artem steps forward to stop the pointless shouting match.
Artem: I am an attorney. If you need to say something, you can tell me all about it later.
Artem: The most important thing now is to confirm Mr. Yin's condition.
Artem exchanges a look with Vyn, who bends down to help Elijah Yin up.
However, he stops as soon as he touches him.
You: What's wrong, Dr. Richter?
Vyn doesn't respond.
He cautiously puts his hand on Elijah Yin's neck, feeling for a pulse.
Vyn opens Elijah Yin's eyes and inspects them. Then... he shakes his head lightly.
Vyn: Elijah Yin is dead.
Marius: He was still in a heated argument not long ago...
Marius turns his eyes toward Shantel Pan, who is standing by the side.
She had been arguing with Elijah Yin. And now, he lies lifeless on the ground.
Shantel Pan: Wh-what are you looking at me for? Are you suspicious of me as well!?
Before you can speak, Shantel Pan starts shrieking nervously.
It is clear she is upset by Elijah Yin's sudden death, which has made her emotions spiral out of control.
You: Ms. Pan, please calm down...
You try to calm her down, so that she can tell you what happened, but...
Mr. Qian: Shantel Pan, you're not getting away with this!
On the other side, Mr. Qian, who had also lost control of himself, charges over. Luke immediately puts up his hand to stop him.
Luke: Everyone, please calm down.
Luke: Mr. Qian, it is imperative that we call the police right now, and let them confirm Mr. Yin's cause of death.
Luke quickly calls the police on his phone. However...
After an awkward busy signal, the phone call is automatically cut off.
You: There's no reception here...
You turn on your phone and notice that you also have no reception.
As a cell phone addict, you suddenly have no idea what to do.
Artem: Excuse me, could you call the police on the landline?
Artem finds Butler Winters in the crowd and makes the request.
Artem: Is something the matter?
Winters: My apologies, we don't have a landline at the villa.
Winters: Our master wanted to retain the old-fashioned style of the villa. So, we didn't install a landline...
Winters: Reception is not great in the mountains, why don't you see if it's better at the entrance...
You: Butler Winters, please help calm the others. We will try to see if we can get a signal at the entrance.
Snow Mountain Trail
You go outside and find Zangr Stewart standing outside the villa.
The flying snow in the howling wind coats Zangr Stewart in a layer of silver.
Looking in the direction of his gaze, you vaguely see a tall and secluded manor shrouded in an eerie and ghastly aura.
You: What is this place...?
Zangr Stewart: I knew it. The protagonists are always guided by their curiosity. As an NPC, I shall reveal the secret of this villa to you!
He smiles and points at the structure not far away.
Vyn: There are many questionable points in what he said, but maybe we should play along and ask him about them.
You: Well... Zangr, what is the secret hidden in the villa?
Zangr Stewart: This villa is corrupted by darkness and has a secret hidden in the deepest depths!
Zangr Stewart: Many strange objects have been kept in the villa like treasures...
Zangr Stewart: What's stranger is that some people in the villa have been trying to find them, but no one has yet to succeed.
Zangr Stewart: But since you are the protagonists, I believe that you can find these strange objects.
You: People in the villa?
Zangr Stewart: Yes. The greedy accomplices of darkness are still lurking in the villa searching for them! Hehe, maybe you already met them.
Zangr Stewart: Interestingly, there are counterfeits among the strange objects, and only the genuine one is valuable.
Zangr Stewart: Even as the protagonists, you can only bring one of them out. I wonder if you can find the genuine one.
Zangr's words give you the shivers.
Zangr Stewart: Also, the spirits told me that if you want to find the deepest secret hidden within, you will encounter many obstacles of darkness.
You: Why would the darkness set these obstacles?
Hearing your question, he looks at you with a sharp burning gaze.
Zangr Stewart: Those secrets obviously cannot see the light of day. Whatever dark corruption hidden behind the villa is unimaginable to the protagonists with bright futures.
Zangr Stewart: I want to reveal this secret too... but I can't do anything as an NPC...
Zangr's strange words invoke your sense of curiosity, and you look at that villa again...
The answer you are looking for might be hidden there.
Artem: [Player], have you decided to believe him and investigate the villa?
You: Yes, I want to take a look inside! It feels like there's a story hidden in there.
Artem: Okay, we will go with you.
Luke: Yes. Many hands make light work, and we can also take care of each other.
Zangr Stewart: Are you sure you want to enter? Is this the innate confidence and courage of the protagonists? I see what the spirits mean now!
Zangr Stewart: The darkness will observe your every move after you enter. There will be traps to hinder you from finding out the truth.
Zangr Stewart: First, you will encounter many questions. You must find the answers to these questions to escape that trap.
Zangr Stewart: Then, you will be shrouded in darkness. It will try to swallow you with fear! Remember, don't lose sight of the light...
Zangr Stewart: Only the light can lead you out. Otherwise, the darkness will catch you, and you will lose the chance to find the truth!
Artem: Will we encounter other "obstacles of darkness" after we find the way out?
You: (His train of thought is all over the place. I have not even figured out what the questions are...)
Zangr Stewart: Unbeatable shadows and horrible obstacles are common in adventures. But avoid being seen by the shadows! Never look into their eyes!
Zangr Stewart: I am telling the truth! The spirits told me everything. You must all do as I say!
Zangr Stewart becomes more agitated. He grabs some snow from beside him and holds it tightly.
Vyn: Calm down. We believe what you said.
You: Avoid being seen... and never look into their eyes.
You: Does he mean there will be surveillance patrols in the villa? So we should be careful, or we might be discovered...
Luke: That makes sense. And these people may be well-trained too.
Artem: Well, it seems we are going to have an adventure before we can gather the final clue.
Vyn: Ask him if there is anything we should look out for.
You: Can we find the hidden truth after overcoming the obstacles you mentioned?
Hearing your question, Zangr Stewart shakes his head, and a bizarre light shines in his eyes.
Zangr Stewart: You would be wrong to think so. The tricks of darkness do not stop there. Before that comes the biggest test...
Marius: The biggest test? What's that?
Zangr Stewart: It is... I can not tell. It can be anything and everything!
Zangr Stewart: Yes, yes, it can be anything and everything!
Zangr Stewart smiles as if he had just recalled something. But his words confuse everyone.
You: Is this even a test?
Hearing you mutter, he seems somewhat discontented.
Zangr Stewart: This is certainly a test! All the traps I mentioned might show up in the final obstacle!
You: (So that's what Zangr meant just now.)
Marius: A mix of all mechanisms... It looks like the designer is trying really hard to cover something.
Zangr Stewart sighs faintly after looking at all of you.
Zangr Stewart: You may be protagonists with Lady Luck smiling down on you... But this villa will offer an unexpected experience.
You want to ask more about the mechanisms, but Zangr just crouches and stares at the snow in front of him.
Zangr Stewart: Leave me alone... I have told you everything I can. As an NPC, I can only exchange information with you now.
Zangr Stewart: If you find something like a Silk Pouch in the villa... you can come to me to exchange it for something.
He ignores you and buries his head in his arms.
Zangr Stewart: Well, an NPC gets tired too. I only want to wait here quietly for the secret to be revealed...
You: Eh... I still haven't figured out what he meant.
You: And those strange but well-preserved objects...
Artem: We can't get any more information from him.
Vyn: Well, according to Zangr...
Vyn: We can "awake" him only when we find something to exchange with him.
Marius: If that's the case, then let's go find that something.
Looking at the tall gate and ghostly light rising from the depths of the mountains, you feel nervous and excited...
You: (I hope we can successfully uncover the hidden secret...)