According to the police report, it was a bleak and freezing December night. A blizzard warning had been announced and the streets of Rosewood were barren, save for the homeless and some stray animals.
By the time officers arrived at the scene, they couldn’t see more than 3 meters in front of themselves without a flashlight due to the thick fog.
This is the story of the Oakley family and the senseless tragedy and loss of life that was set in motion decades prior to that dreary Winter night.
All the information presented in this faithful retelling and slight dramatization of the tragedy was pieced together from various police reports and news coverage of the era.
The Oakleys were about to head to sleep when they heard glass shatter in the dining room.
Mr. Oakley was the first to get to the dining room, where he found a monkey’s paw taped to the table with a note attached.
“Who the hell is Mac Guffin?” Mr. Oakley asked, taking a long drag from his large pipe.
“I read a story like this once,” said Sam, the youngest son.
“Oh, are you talking about the Monkey’s Paw?” Mrs. Oakley asked.
John, the oldest son, took a sip from his cup of tea, “I’m pretty sure he’s talking about Clue.”
Mr. Oakley choked on his pipe, “isn’t that a board game?”
“No, I’m pretty sure they made a movie about it.”
“Is that so?”
“Yeah,” John pulled out his phone, “let me Google it.”
While the Oakleys waited for John to find out whether Clue was a movie or board game, another loud sound came from the boiler room.
“Goddamn mansion is falling apart,” grunted Mr. Oakley.
Mary, the middle child, spoke up, “don’t use the Lord’s name in vain”.
“Alright, I’m sorry-”
“We are God-fearing Christians.”
“-I know, I-”
“We go to Church.”
“-yes, I am aware-”
“This house is a gift from the Lord.”
John interrupted, “I found it, they made a movie about it in 1985 starring Professor Plum.”
“Isn’t Professor Plum one of the characters from the board game?” Mrs. Oakley asked.
“Oh, right. Well, he’s a character in the movie,” Sam replied, "wait. Hmm."
“Daddy, who gave us the paw?” asked Sam.
“I don’t know Sam,” Mr. Oakley replied before taking another drag from his comically large pipe.
“I’ll call for the butler,” Mary said, leaving the room.
A few minutes later, Mr. Oakley was losing terribly at Monopoly to his family when there was a loud scream from the living room.
Everyone rushed into the living room, finding one of the housemaids leaning against the wall, hyperventilating.
Once she regained her nerves, she told her story.
“I was dusting the furniture when I felt something staring at me.”
Sam scratched the back of his head.
“I turned around and looked through the window, where I saw IT looking at me.”
Mr. Oakley coughed loudly.
“What was it?” asked Mrs. Oakley.
Sam continued to scratch the back of his head.
“It was IT.”
Sam's collar was coated in dandruff.
Mrs. Oakley noticed Sam scratching his head and slapped his hand, whispering at him to stop.
“Like the clown, from the movie.”
John noticed the pile of dandruff on Sam’s collar and pulled out a napkin from his pocket, handing it to his mom.
“Oh, you mean Pennywise?” asked John.
Mrs. Oakley looked at John, wiping the dandruff with the napkin, “didn’t they make a book out of that?”
Mr. Oakley sneezed.
Everyone said, “bless you”.
Mr. Oakley thanked them.
John pulled out his phone, “I don’t know, let me Google it.”
Mr. Oakley continued interrogating the housemaid, “so you saw a clown outside of the house?”
John left the room to go pee.
The toilet flushed from the other room.
John returned to the room.
Sam was hit by a realization. “Where is Mary?”
“Didn’t she say she was going to bed?” asked John.
Mrs. Oakley trashed the dirty napkin.
“No, I’m fairly sure she was going to find the butler,” replied Mrs. Oakley.
Sam started scratching his head again.
Mr. Oakley was hit by a sudden realization as well, “oh, wait, the book came before the movie.”
Mary was wandering through the servant’s quarters when she heard metal scraping against the floor from the only room with light coming out of it.
She walked over the door and peered in through the crack.
The butler was talking to two housemaids.
“Girls, you were supposed to take away one of the chairs-”
Mary opened the door, “Charles, what are you doing?”
The butler was flustered, “Mary! This isn’t what it looks like.”
“I believe it is.”
The housemaids hurried out through the side door.
“You were playing musical chairs without me?”
“Well, I just-”
“With Harriet and Olivia, no less?”
“I just wanted to practice a bit for the-”
“For the party?”
“With those bitches?”
“You know how I feel about those girls?”
"I feel that they're bitches."
"I am aware of that."
Mary slapped Charles's face before coming to her senses.
“Wait, Charlie--I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to do that.”
Charles started crying.
“Honey, I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to hit you.”
He continued to cry.
“I would never hit-”
“But you just did!” he sobbed.
Mary hugged him and started crying, “baby, I’m so sorry.”
Charles continued to sob in her shoulder.
Mr. Oakley sent the housemaid off to find Mary.
“This Stephen King clownposter cocksucker cunt hasn’t hurt anyone yet, but I don’t want to take any chances,” he began,
“We’re going to stay together in the living room tonight and call the police.”
"Stephen Spielberg," said John.
"IT was made by Stephen Spielberg," he said.
"No, John, the book came before the movie," said Mrs. Oakley.
"Well, that doesn't mean they made the book before the movie, maybe they had production errors," he replied.
"John, just shut the fuck up," Mary said, "in fact, everyone just shut the fuck up."
"Oh, Mary, you're back! Where were you?", asked Sam.
"None of your fucking business."
Mr. Oakley opened his mouth to say something, but decided to shut the fuck up midway through the action.
Charles was in his quarters, illuminated by the moonlight flowing in through the billowing curtains as the cold winter air slowly chilled the room.
He lay curled up on the bed in a fetal position and drifted into an uncomfortable sleep.
When he awoke, the first thing he noticed was the blinding ceiling lights.
He tried to move his head, but felt a sharp pain in his neck.
He carefully got out of the cot and stood barefoot on the cold tile in the clean hospital gown.
The only other piece of furniture in the small room was a foldable metal chair.
The walls swayed around him as he struggled to stand on his sore legs.
He struggled to speak, “is anyone there?”
He received an unexpected response over the intercom, “Patient ACS-10121, the American Cryonics Society, which is now a proud member of Zaibatsu Corporation, would like to congratulate you on your revitalization. Please report to the library foyer for debriefing.”
Charles struggled to maintain his balance, utterly dumbfounded.
He stumbled over to the door and struggled to open it with his clammy hands.
When he eventually opened the door he was greeted by a dark hallway. His room was the second closest door to the very end of the hall, superseded only by a janitor’s closet which had medical equipment strewn about in front of it a haphazard way.
He started down the hallway in a half-dazed state with an endless flow of disjointed questions and thoughts.
After walking for what felt like an hour he saw a light at the end of the hallway.
He limped faster, almost tripping over his own feet in the process.
A man stood at the end of the hallway.
Charles could only make out his silhouette.
“Who are you?” he croaked.
“My good sir, it has been quite some time”, said the figure.
“Where am I?”
“These are all questions that will be answered in due time,” replied the figure, “but first, I must tell you something rather important.”
Charles heaved, he felt as though there was a weight on his chest restricting his breathing.
The figure continued, “good sir, we’ve been trying to reach you about your car’s extended warranty.”
Charles woke up from the nightmare in a ball of sweat.
He poured himself a glass of water with the pitcher he had on his nightstand.
He sighed deeply, the cold night air calmed his nerves.
He opened his door to leave and found Harriet laying on the floor, unconscious.
“Does anyone feel a little lightheaded?” Mrs. Oakley asked.
Mary was barely awake, “I thought I was tired, but now that you mention it, I’m feeling kind of lightheaded as well actually.”
John stared into a wall, “I think I read something about this on Reddit, but I can’t remember,” he trailed off.
Sam sat on Mrs. Oakley’s lap, “mommy I’m scared”.
“There’s nothing to be afraid of dear.”
“Ohhhh,” John looked up from his phone, “there’s probably a gas leak.”
"Alright that's almost everyone accounted for," Mr. Oakley said.
Everyone had evacuated the mansion and was standing in the snow.
"Who are we missing?" Charles asked.
"Here hun, have these," Olivia handed Harriet a packet of Acetaminophen pills, who was still regaining from her brush with death.
"I'm not sure," Mr. Oakley said, "I only did a head count".
Once the police arrived, everyone was driven to the nearest hotel with the exception of Olivia and Harriet--who went to the hospital to get Harriet a new inhaler because she left hers in the mansion.
After the city shut off the gas and it was deemed safe to head into the mansion, they found the corpse of a man wearing a clown mask in the boiler room, the source of the gas leak.
Further investigation revealed that the man, "Mac Guffin" had a history of mental illness and was a disgruntled ex-employee of Oakley Incorporated who was fired for repeatedly spending company time and money playing Clash of Clans.
The cause of the gas leak was determined to be shoddy construction decades prior and that Mac Guffin was unfortunate enough to enact his revenge on the night the pipes burst.
Everyone lived happily ever after the end.