James was fully aware what the two women, Kat and Ryder, were going to do. He had a knack for psycology and reading people, you see. Subtle signs told him that they both wanted to explore every far reach of Blackthorn. Perfect. Time to do a little exploring of my own, he thought to himself.

The Manor was not all that it seemed to the naked eye. Behind almost every wall, inside every bookcase, within every suspicious piece of decor were secrets to be found, in true old Victorian style. Victor Bane had busied himself installing numerous 'additions'; Rooms, passageways, hidden cameras in every nook, and various security measures for "Unwanted witnesses." Bane was most certainly a man with plenty to hide.
Except tonight, all would be revealed, it seemed.

The heavy wooden door to James's room, labelled 'Thomas W.' in a worn gold banner, creaked as it opened outward, into the musty hallway. James caught a wisp of a glimpse as Kat & Ryder turned a corner, bubbling excitedly. Turning heel in the oppisite direction, James snuck away, towards their rooms, where he believed their bags to be kept, just waiting to have their secrets spilled.
He'd reached the rooms, labelled with their respective names. Picking one at random, he homed in on Ryder's purposefully, opening and shutting the door in a flash.
The excessive dust hit him like a whirlwind, as it rose up into his nostrils, a catalyst in his eventual 'AAH-CHOO!' Recuperating and wiping his nose, he swept his view across the dark space. Bane obviously gave the guests these unused, decrepit rooms to avoid any 'accidents' that may occur elsewhere in Blackthorn. It made James think of how much a hypocrite Bane was. He'd dedicated this entire event to finding out every secret of these strangers, while closely guarding his own. What did he know that James didn't?
Ryder's bag sat on a red silken chair, which was obviously past it's prime. It was posted next to the window, which James found open, surprisingly. The rain was still going strong, being blustered about erraticly by the ferocious wind. It was bleeding through the wide-open window, leaving a wet stain on a small area of floorspace.
Stepping gingerly over it, James cautiously opened up Ryder's nondescript bag.
It just seemed wrong to him, going through a lady's things. There was no knowing what he'd find. Taking a deep breath, and shutting out whatever his conscience had to say, James assiduously reached inside.


To think, that two guests almost stumbled upon Master Bane's favourite electric shock chamber! Desmond almost shuddered at the thought. But, he had to keep his composure in front of the guests, remaining as distant but as helpful as possible. If it weren't for the sensor cameras installed within the dark-eyed painting in the adjoining corridor, the two guests would not of been spotted! Desmond had thought it rather cliche, but now it seemed a superlative idea. After diverting them away from the grisly chamber, Desmond was now leading them toward the main dining hall.
They both walked at a slow, steady pace behind him, saying nothing. None of the guests were trusting of him, he was sure. These two in particular. They seemed to give him a wide berth, trailing slightly behind, looking up occasionally to see if he hadn't magically disappeared. 

Upon entering the expansive dining hall, Desmond noted that all the guests he'd called down previous had gathered; Andrew, Audry and James, still under his pretence of being this "Tom Worthing". Desmond gestured to the two girls, 'Please, take a seat anywhere you would like. Master Bane will greet you formally in but one moment.' They complied silently, following the direction of his outstretched arm towards the massively long dining table. It spanned the length of almost the entire room, and was laid with a small feast and candles. To its left was a ginormous roaring fireplace, which luminated the room with a warm, safe glow. Andrew and James basked in its radiance, discussing medicine. On the right of the room were a multitude of expensive-looking display cabinets, filled with multitudes of
publicity-worthy acheivements and collections. On this side of the table sat a lonesome, sulking Audry, who was staring silently into the candlelight.
At the far front of the room, stood a small stage, complete with a podium meant for public speaking. Behind this, was a giant red, silk curtain bearing the golden initials: 'V.B'.  
Ryder & Kat found a space at the table as Desmond turned to leave the room. Shutting the big iron doors, he drew his gold-encrusted butler's key, and sealed the guests inside. 

The End

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