Chapter 6: Day Three

During a sweltering August in 1881, one of the members of the Seekers of Enlightenment receives a letter from an old friend, requesting help in solving a family mystery. It will soon become a matter of life or death…

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Re: Chapter 6: Day Three

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“I’m really not sure. He mainly suffered when the temperature grew higher. The summer he died was also unusually hot, like this one.”
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Re: Chapter 6: Day Three

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"That's a bad sign," says Alexander. "I am rather concerned about Harry, but at least his symptoms aren't as bad as his father's were. Why does it only seem to affect men and not women, I wonder?"
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Re: Chapter 6: Day Three

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Jeffries looks confused.

“What women?” he asks. “The wives? You can't inherit a hereditary ailment through marriage."

He shakes his head as he taps out his pipe.

"Do you have any further questions for me, or have I satisfied your curiousity?"
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Re: Chapter 6: Day Three

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"I'm sorry, I thought you meant that the ailment wasn't hereditary when you said it was more emotional than physical," says Alexander. "Actually, we wanted to speak to you about Rhoda Forby as well. I understand that she came to trust and depend upon you."
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Re: Chapter 6: Day Three

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“Conditions of the mind can also be passed on. I suspect that this might have happened with the Forby men.”

Jeffries pauses.

“Yes, Rhoda Forby and I were close. I was her physician for many years.”
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Re: Chapter 6: Day Three

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“How well did Rhoda cope after her husband died?” Asks Isolde. She watches the doctor carefully to see if he might have had romantic feelings for Rhoda and is hiding something.
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53[dice]0[/dice]
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Re: Chapter 6: Day Three

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Jeffries is silent for a moment.

“She was shocked and very distraught. His death was unexpected and the manner in which it happened…”

He trails off, but continues after a moment.

“But she was a very strong woman. She could deal with whatever came her way.”
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Jeffries obviously remembers Rhoda with fondness. Whether it is romantic or not, it’s hard to tell. But you have the diary entries to help you figure out their relationship.
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Re: Chapter 6: Day Three

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'Rhoda Forby's diaries are still in the library at Forby House' says Harry, interested to see what reaction this elicits in Jeffries.
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Re: Chapter 6: Day Three

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While the others asked their questions, Vic glanced around the room, looking for signs that anything was amiss.
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Specifically, Vic is looking for any signs of a less-than-professional relationship e.g. photos of Jeffries and Rhoda together, for example. Spot Hidden (25%) - [dice]0[/dice]
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Re: Chapter 6: Day Three

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Jeffries looks at Harry when he makes his statement.

Rhoda wrote about us in her diaries? Then I’m sure you will know that nothing untoward happened. While we may have been in love, our affair was strictly platonic and more like the relationship you will find between close friends. Rhoda would never behave indiscreetly and she was committed to Alestair. She wouldn’t even remarry after his death.”
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Re: Chapter 6: Day Three

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Harry coughs, 'Dr Jeffries, I think we may be talking at cross purposes here. I did not intend to make any such accusation. I mention the diaries because Rhoda Forby stated that she discovered a document after her husband's death that she entrusted to “to the man I trust most in this world”. I wondered if you knew anything about it.'

Harry hopes that this little insight into Rhoda's affection for him might encourage Dr Jeffries to be a little more forthcoming.
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Re: Chapter 6: Day Three

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"Aye, I cannae think of anyone she would trust more than you," says Alexander.
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Re: Chapter 6: Day Three

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“Yes, Rhoda entrusted me with a letter, which I still have. I regard it as a sacred trust, an example of her faith in me, so I have never opened it, although I have speculated at the contents.”
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Re: Chapter 6: Day Three

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Vic looked sharply at Dr. Jeffries. ”That letter may hold a vital clue to the unravelling off this mystery,” she said, trying to keep her tone even. “We would beseech you to open it and share the contents. It may save Harry Forby’s life!”
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Re: Chapter 6: Day Three

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Jeffries hesitates a moment, then nods.

“Perhaps it’s time then.”

He stands and leaves the room, returning shortly with an envelope. Taking an opener, he slits it open and takes out the letter. He reads silently, and then his eyes grow wide.

“Good God!” he exclaims.

He passes the letter to Vic, and sits down heavily in his chair. The companions crowd around to read it.


Rhoda

I found a cache of papers – I will not say where, save that through all my search the secret was before my eyes. I have returned them whence I found them, for my heart is sick with what I learned there. My soul aches with a pain worse than that in my head. Now I know the truth of the Green Man of which the village beldames whisper. Now I know where my treasure can be found, and in God’s name I wish I had never come to the conclusion of my search.

I will investigate, if only in the hope that it be lies or deluded ramblings. I will go alone to shield the family honour, but I swear that I will go armed.

Rhoda, if you find this, no matter what else it seems, know that I was, like my father, most foully and treacherously murdered.

Aleister
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Re: Chapter 6: Day Three

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“Oh my word!” Murmurs Isolde as she collapses back into her chair. “How awful! And poor Rhonda never knew the truth of the matter. I’ve come across the mention of this Green Man in the diaries; Dr Jeffries, have you heard about it? Maybe from the villagers?”

She looks round at everyone,
“Do you think the secret is the emerald? That he found it but for some reason didn’t reveal it? And then was murdered.” Isolde looks up in alarm. “Harry isn’t safe then; we shouldn’t have left them alone! We must head back at once!”
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Re: Chapter 6: Day Three

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Vic puts the letter down with a shaking hand. “Will the emerald lead us to the green man?” she stammered.
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Re: Chapter 6: Day Three

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'But what is this "Green Man"? The only monster we've seen so far has had a much more mundane explanation exclaims Harry. 'Is there anything more we could find out about the "Green Man" or how it might be connected with the treasure?'

Harry thinks for a moment, 'Could the green man not be a monster at all, but perhaps a statue, a statue covered in verdigris?'
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Re: Chapter 6: Day Three

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”Is not the ‘Green Man’ some sort of pagan forest god?” asked Vic.
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Did we see any books about folklore back in the library?
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Re: Chapter 6: Day Three

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Jeffries is listening to the theories being expounded, and with a deep voice, he pronounces “Hush!”

His brow is furrowed in concentration.

Aleister was most definitely not murdered. He killed himself, I’m certain of it and so were the police and coroner. He shot himself in the head, and the revolver was in his hand. There was no other sign of violence to his person. We concluded that his headaches had grown so that he could no longer think rationally, and so took his own life to alleviate the pain of them.”


He looks around at the companions.

“As for the Green Man, it’s a common enough legend throughout England, throughout Europe even! A nature spirit of some kind. It’s a local legend for sure, the villagers sometimes gossip about it, delighting in the superstition. As for it being the cause of Aleister Forby’s death, it’s preposterous! And what is this talk about a monster, Mr. Brown? And the statue? Come now! Be rational man!”
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