Remembered Death by: Laura

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Note From Laura: Okay, so just to make things clear again, the game only calls for 16 players. There's 20 for now. 2 will be eliminated. Sorry to disappoint you Westing Game fans, but Dr. Deere, Chris, Dr. Wexler and Madame Hoo, although they will still be in the story, are getting eliminated from the actual game. Eventually.
Believe me, I didn't want to do it...but for the sake of the story...uh, deal with it. And once again, I don't own the book. I didn't write it. Unless I have another personality named Ellen Raskin.

Second- I, Samuel W. Westing, hereby swear that I did not die of natural causes My like was taken from me-by one of you!"

Re-reading her notes, Sydelle Pulaski now utters a small shriek. "Eek!"

"Murder? Does that mean Westing was murdered?"

Joey grips the edge of her chair and glances at Dawson, who is just as stunned as she is. Pacey snorts.

"Is this a joke?" he asks, disbelieving. The rest of the heirs simply sit still in their metal folding chairs, dumbfounded. Judge Ford was the first to re-gain her composure.

"Have the police been notified of this charge?" She asks the inexperienced lawyer, who merely shrugs.

"I presume they will perform an autopsy." Judge Ford shakes her head in dismay. Joey follows the judge's gaze to the open casket containing Westing's body. The body which had already been embalmed and was to be cremated the very next day. There will be no autopsy. Not sure what to do, E.J. Plum lets out another nervous cough and turns back to the will.

The police are helpless. The culprit is far too cunning to be apprehended for this dastardly deed. I, alone, know the name. Now it is up to you. Cast out the sinner, let the guilty rise and confess. "Amen," said Crow, quite unexpectedly. Jen nearly jumps out of her seat. The young lawyer eyes the old woman, then continues. Third. Who among you in worthy to be the Westing heir? Help me. My soul shall roam restlessly until that one is found.

The estate is at the crossroads. The heir who wins the windfall will be the on who finds the...

"Ashes!" Sandy, the doorman shouted. Some people laughed, some threw a scornful glance in his direction, and Grace Wexler let out a clear, click of her tongue in reproach for the doorman's poor behavior. Pacey just smiles to himself as Sandy explains his joke. "You know, ashes scattered to the winds, so the one who wins the windfall gets- Oh, never mind." Sandy throws up his hands in frustration.

"I think I'm going to like this guy," Pacey thinks, surveying the other heirs that were sitting around him. "Sandy seems like the only one in the group who didn't have a stick up his ass. Except maybe that Otis Amber guy..."

After another interruption, an annoyed Mr. Plum hastily continues the reading of the will.

Fourth. Hail to there, O land of opportunity! You have made me, the son of poor immigrants, rich, powerful and respected.

So take stock in America, my heirs, and sing in praise of this generous land. You, too, may strike it rich who dares play the Westing game.

A murmur went through the crowd. What was he talking about? A game? Even more annoyed than the lawyer, Judge Ford stands up and makes to leave.

"This is either a cruel trick or the man was insane."

Fifth. Sit down, your honor, and read the letter this brilliant young attorney will now hand over to you.

This time, everyone's head turned toward the coffin. The four teens exchanged looks, not believing that Westing's eyes were really closed. But alas, they were shut forever. Plum handed an envelope over to Judge Ford, and she simply tucked it into her purse.

"No need to open it. Sam Westing could afford to buy a dozen certificates of sanity."

Sixth. Before you proceed to the game room there will be one minute of silent prayer for your good old Uncle Sam.

Everyone in the room bent their heads, yet Crow was the only one to pray. "Exactly who are we grieving for?" Dawson asks himself, eyeing the stranger in the coffin.


The large group of confused and bewildered heirs slowly enter the game room to find eight card tables, each with two chairs, set up. The room is filled with billiard cues, hunting rifles, Ping-Pong paddles...anything and everything. Theo wanders over to the chess table, noticing someone had moved the white pawn. Joey does her own noticing, as she intently watches the handsome boy move a black knight across the board. Edgar Jennings Plum cleared his throat, signaling he was about to begin.

Sydelle Pulaski clumsily reaches a seat, loudly re-arranging her crutches as she pulls her notebook back out of her bag. As soon as she is situated, she gesture for the lawyer to begin.

Seventh. And now dear friends, relatives and enemies, the Westing game begins.

-Number of players, 20, divided into 10 pairs.
-Each pair will receive $10,000
-Each pair will receive one set of clues.
-Forfeits: If any player drops out, the partner must leave the game. The pair must return the money. Absent pairs forfeit the $10,000; their clues will be distributed evenly among all other players and they are out of the game.
-Players will be given two days' notice of the next session. Each pair may then give one answer.
-Object of the game: to win.

Joey looks at Dawson, excitedly. "$10,000?!?" she mouths to him in disbelief. Her mind is already running with ideas of what to do with such a large chunk of change. Maybe coming to this thing wasn't such a bad idea after all. Joey looks back to Dawson again, but finds he is already rejoicing the good news with Jen. Her face falls, and she slumps back into her seat.

"Shhhh!" Turtle Wexler harshly exclaims to the crowd, a determined look covering her face. The object of the game was to win, and she wanted to win.

Eighth. The heirs will now be paired. When called, go to the assigned table. Your name and position will be read as signed on the receipt. It will be up to the other players to discover who you really are.

1: Pacey Witter, standing or sitting when not laying down
Joey Potter, student

Joey groans, disgusted. Pacey laughs at his "position" joke and nudges Joey to see if she got it. She rolls her eyes at him, not finding it in the slightest bit funny. No other heir is laughing either. Pacey shrugs.

"God, tough room."

2- Turtle Wexler, witch
Flora Baumbach, dressmaker

Turtle storms over to her table as the rest of the crowd sighs in relief. The shin-kicking brat wouldn't be their partner, at least. Turtle isn't happy with the pairing, however. She had hoped for one of the high school seniors...preferably Doug Hoo.

3- Dawson Leery, director
Jen Lindley, atheist

Crow looks up, alarmed as she hears Jen's clear statement. Jen heads to her new seat, not happy knowing the next few days would be spent with her ex-boyfriend. Dawson, on the other hand, is ecstatic. Whoever made these pairing had something planned for them.

4-Alexander McSouthers, doorman
Judge Ford, judge, Appellate Division of the State Supreme Court

The heirs watch as the jaunty doorman pulls out a chair for the judge. It had never occurred to them that Sandy was a nickname for Alexander, but that couldn't be what Same Westing meant by It will be up to the other players to discover who you really are. Or could it?

5-Grace Windsor Wexler, heiress
James Shin Hoo, restaurateur

Grace ignores the snickers. If she is not heiress now, she will be soon.

"You'll be happy to know that Mr. Westing was really my Uncle Sam," she whispers to Mr. Hoo, who snorts.

Pacey nudges Joey.

"I think that grumpy 'restaurateur' did it," Pacey confides.

"Well, keep your suspicions to yourself, Matlock. I don't care about them," Joey mutters and sinks farther down into her chair.

6- Berthe Erica Crow, Good Salvation Soup Kitchen
Otis Amber, deliverer

The delivery dances a merry jig, but Crow headed for table six with a grim face. Why were they watching her? Did they think she killed Windy? Could the guilty know her guilt? Repent!

7- Theo Theodrakis, brother
Doug Hoo, first in the all-state high-school mile run.

The friends slapped hands, and Doug jogged to table seven. Theo started over, but as he passes the chessboard, notices that white has made another move. He countered with a black pawn.

8-Madame Sun Lin Hoo, cook
Jake Wexler, podiatrist

Both Mr. Hoo and Mrs. Wexler made excuses for their spouses- "Emergency operation," "My wife doesn't even speak English"-to no avail. Table 8 remained empty and moneyless.

9-Christos Theodrakis, birdwatcher
D. Denton Deere, intern, St. Joseph's Hospital, Department of Plastic Surgery

Mrs. Wexler complained. Dr. Deere should be with his bride-to-be. Denton protested silently. If this had been arranged for free medical advice, they (whoever they are) were mistaken. He was a busy man. He was a doctor, not a nursemaid.

Chris happily wheeled himself over to table 9, delighted to be part of the outside world. He would tell the intern about the man he saw limping into the Westing mansion before the murder...maybe that was the murderer. Unless his partner was the murderer. This was really exciting, even better than television.

"I guess that makes us partners, Ms. Pulaski," Angela said.

"Pardon me, did you say something?"

10- Sydelle Pulaski, secretary to the president
Angela Wexler, none

Angela stepped tentatively behind the secretary, not knowing whether to offer her arm to help or ignore her partner's disability. At least a cripple couldn't be a murderer, but it was embarrassing to be paired with such she was thinking like her mother...she mustn't do that.

Sydelle smiled. With such a good-lucking partner, she was sure to be noticed now. Maybe they'd even invite her to the wedding.

Denton Deere was troubled. What in the world had Angela meant by "nun"?


Edgar Jennings Plum once again cleared his throat.

Ninth. Money! Each pair in attendance will now receive a check for the sum of $10,000. The check cannot be cashed without the signatures of both partners. Spend it wisely or go for broke. May God thy gold refine. "Amen to that," Pacey says loudly. Joey glares at him. Turtle looks at Pacey, interested in the humorous, loud-mouthed, yet exceptionally attractive older boy.

Dawson eyes the check, a new movie forming in his mind as the lawyer passes out the envelopes.

"Is this legal, judge?" Sandy asked.

"Is it not only legal, Mr. McSouthers, it's a shrewd way to keep everyone playing the game," Judge Ford explained, and signed the check.

Tenth. Each pair in attendance will now receive an envelope containing a set of clues. No two sets of clues are alike. It is not what you have, it's what you don't have that counts.

Joey looks at Dawson and murmurs "Tell me about it." under her breath. Pacey hears her and smiles knowingly to himself. He had been right all along.

Plum hands the envelope to Joey and she looks at it, as if holding Pandora's Box. What did the clues hold in store for them all?

To Be Continued...

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