home bio blog armyofdarkness media projects contact

Newest Entries
Archives


Part Title

  Greetings one and all, but especially you, my lovely Traipsers! When last we left Harry, we had stolen a no doubt priceless artifact from a morgue and watched our former living friend Lisa melt into a mound of very dead human-flavored slurry. It was a pretty sad moment, one in which Harry proved his basic humanity and comforted pfff, ha, no. He ran out, leaving Lisa weeping for her last moments to not be spent alone and afraid.

If Harry had a conscience, this would probably haunt him for the rest of his life.
If Harry had a conscience, this would probably haunt him for the rest of his life.

  When we regain control of Harry, we head right back into the room. I’m pretty sure that’s the intention, as Harry starts out just facing the door he fled out of like it’s not the former residence of a blood-spraying woman. Anyway, Lisa somehow teleported out during her whole dramatic death. It’s super weird, considering this is one of the few rooms in the hospital that was designed specifically for Nowhere (I believe), and they gave it a solid floor. Even the morgue right behind it has solid ground instead of the nightmare chain-link.

  So dying gives you the ability to evaporate or teleport. I suppose it explains why all the dead bodies vanish when you leave the room.

  Anyway, Lisa’s disappearing act came with a price—she dropped her diary on the floor. Since I’m writing this on the eve of Thanksgiving, that most American of holidays, I am going to make like the NSA and pry into someone’s personal life. You celebrate it your way, I will celebrate it mine. Don’t judge.

  So, the diary is as follows:

In case you have never seen a diary before, please accept this artist rendition.
In case you have never seen a diary before, please accept this artist rendition.

QUOTE

            Ask doctor to let me quit being in charge of that patient.
            It’s too weird.

            [page break]

            Still alive, but with wounds that won’t heal.

            [page break]

            Told the doctor I quit. Won’t work at that hospital anymore.

            [page break]

            The room is filled with insects.
            Even the doors
            and windows shut
            they get in to spite me.
            To the hospital…

            [page break]

            Feeling bad.
            Need to throw up.
            But nothing comes out.
            Vomiting only bile.

            [page break]

            Blood and pus flow from the bathroom faucet.
            I try to stop it,
            but it won’t turn off.

            [page break]

            Need drug.

            [page break]

            Help me…

END QUOTE

  Before we get into the analysis here, I highlighted every time that pressing “X” to continue the diary resulted in the noise of a page turning. I have to assume that this was intentional, and that Lisa wrote a handful of words on every page like a wasteful dipshit. Also, I blame Silent Hill and Resident Evil for the fact that I use a shitload of ellipses in my writing. I mean, Jesus, who does that in a diary? Also, holy shit Lisa, that is some awkward grammar.

  Long story short, Lisa appears to have been the one to take care of Alessa and she had a bit of a nose candy habit. Now, the latter is something that Origins already clued us in on, but Silent Hill does provide a bit more context for Lisa’s role in the story. It also retroactively suggests that Lisa lied to Travis when he showed up in the hospital lobby after defeating the first taffyman.

Liar!
Liar!

Now, she could have just been following orders by lying to Studly Trucker, but that’s not really an excuse. What on earth could Dr. Skeeves have told her to have made her just lie to some random stranger about Alessa? Sorry, Lisa’s not fully blameless in this situation. Now, it’s still tragic what happened, but she still was an integral part in torturing Alessa.

  And, wait a minute… this means that she probably knew Dahlia the whole time! She lied to Harry by being all vague about Ms. Gillespie—Cultist! CUUUUUULLLLTIST!

  Sorry.

  The point is that she clearly doesn’t know what she can and can not tell this weird guy about her bosses, so she errs on the side of less information. Makes sense to me.

  Now, since this diary doesn’t have dates, we’re not given a really accurate timeline about what happened and when with Lisa. I guess, taking what I know of her established personality, she probably took care of Alessa for a couple of months before freaking out and trying to leave. Anything more than that is just silly—if she had been doing this for years, why the break? I mean, I know people can snap, but still. I guess you’d have to be a special amount of desensitized to not be affected by Alessa’s condition, and Lisa doesn’t strike me as that kind of woman.

  Now, the diary also suggests that Lisa had actually successfully quit Alchemilla and was wandering about the city in a withdrawal-induced haze. After that, she dies from… something. Then again, though, it doesn’t say that she died—we just assume she did because she just died in front of us. So did she die twice? How does one manage to get an extra life in Silent Hill?

  The more likely scenario is that she probably just went back to work after quitting, soldiering through her disgust with herself and the cult in order to get more sweet, sweet cocaine. Er, sorry… PTV or whatever. Anyway, the drug could have been used to string her along and was withheld when she protested Alessa’s treatment, or maybe she built up a tolerance and needed more to keep the… um… very unpleasant symptoms at bay.

  That would actually make quite a bit more sense—that she came crawling back to the hospital and the addiction it represented for her. It would also make sense that Lisa is the one who is given more “personality” than the parasite-infected husks wandering around—she’s actually still alive, but being slowly eaten away by her addiction and Alessa’s hatred. After all, she abandoned Alessa only to return to the cult’s fold—not for the protection of the crispy girl, but for the release the drugs granted to her. Alessa, reawakened and pissed off, would no doubt target Lisa as one of her tormentors.

  It would also make sense that she is the only human character that is trapped in the nightmare world rather than the foggy reality—Dahlia and Kaufmann probably were skilled enough in whatever bullshit plot magic to keep them marginally protected. Lisa? Not so much.

  Look, I know this probably isn’t the “canon” rationale or whatever, but the canon rationale is probably intensely stupid. Alessa is allowed to rage at people who contributed to seven years of torture. And even if she liked Lisa, why the hell did she allow her to die like this, alone and scared, with only a dipshit to comfort her? No, this is the action of someone driven to a pathological need for revenge. Attempting to say this was because Alessa liked Lisa doesn’t make any fucking sense.

  But that’s about it.

For Reference
For Reference

  Lisa’s privacy suitably invaded, we jaunt back out to the Ophiel hallway. Another unlocked door leads to a chamber with four plaques set upon the walls.

Ugh, I'm terrible at remembering birthdays.
Ugh, I'm terrible at remembering birthdays.

There are three additional plaques on the back well, although they are set on a column with number panels set below them.

This is the worst calendar ever.
This is the worst calendar ever.

So, first thing’s first—these images all correspond to the zodiac. Why is anyone’s guess. Fish is Pisces, scales refers to Libra, the good ol’ ram is Aries, and the crab is Cancer. The other plaques are Sagittarius (centaur), Taurus (bull), and Gemini (two kids).

  Now, if you’re like me, your first impulse will be that the numbers below each of the signs correspond to the month or at least the order they appear. This doesn’t work—Aries is traditionally the third (the first two being Capricorn followed by Aquarius), and yet it has the number four beneath it. So then the next step is to think that they shifted the numerical values—this, too, does not work, as a cursory glance at an astrological chart will tell you.

  It’s about this point that you realize that the numbers are tallying the number of limbs of each picture. So the solution is six for the centaur, four for the bull, and eight for the kids.

  I know, an abstract puzzle that was actually kind of fun to solve. And it was right next to another sort-of abstract puzzle that was at least trying to be clever. I’m not sure what compelled them to front and back load the puzzles in this game, but whatever. At least it’s more fun than the original hospital. And the sewers. And the docks.

  Anyway, successful completion of the puzzle nets us the “Stone of Time”, which is a chunk of rock with a clock face carved into it. It is given to us in a manner most… actually, should I be watching this?

I don't care what anyone says, birth videos are just gross.
I don't care what anyone says, birth videos are just gross.

After we scrape off the afterbirth, Harry describes it as “Large stone with clock-face design on pillar with astrology chart hanging from it.” God, you paint quite the picture, Harry.

  Anyway, clock faced chunk of granite in hand or pocket or whatever, we should set about finding a place to put it. And you know a good place for a piece of junk with a picture of a clock on it? The antique store’s piece of junk clock. Returning to the Ophiel hallway results in a nurse spawning, and rather than truck with that nonsense, we dark back into the original-flavored hallway. Another nurse has spawned, so we do what needs to be done and send it back to whatever hell produced it. To the Green Lion!

  Setting the Stone of Time in place causes the clock to strike five, then explode in Harry’s stupid face.

It's the little things, like watching Harry pick glass out of his eyeballs, that make this game worthwhile.
It's the little things, like watching Harry pick glass out of his eyeballs, that make this game worthwhile.

However, we now have access to the Hagith Key, which will allow us to unlock the door at the end of the original hallway. So, yea!

  But before we go and do that, I pilot Harry back to the Ophiel hallway to see if there are any other doors or goodies to find. The nurse I graciously left alive knifes me in the ear for my curiosity, so I rescind my gift in return. Sadly, all the other doors are locked, but do you remember that blank plaque back in Alchemilla?

Oh, right. I remember nondescript bullshit all the time.
Oh, right. I remember nondescript bullshit all the time.

Yeah, it does have a purpose, apparently. Shitty poetry, Nowhere edition!

Ah, yes, I can see why this was important to have in Alchemilla's nightmare reality.
Ah, yes, I can see why this was important to have in Alchemilla's nightmare reality.

QUOTE

            Names engraved on a lithograph.
            The Grim Reaper’s list.

            Yes, the headcount is set
            You and old lined up
            In order of age.

            Then, the pathway opens
            Awaiting them, the frenzied
            Uproar, the feast of death!

END QUOTE

This functions as your clue to the Grim Reaper’s grocery list puzzle from last update. I guess it’s helpful in a blatantly pandering kind of way, but considering we already solved the puzzle and gotten everything we could out of the room beyond it, it’s… um… kind of useless.

  I guess I should be thankful that the ALERT solution wasn’t hidden in a doghouse or something.

  Also, feast of death? Frenzied uproar? It was one woman. Take a chill pill, Silent Hill.

  Anyway, we’ve cleared the first floor, so now it’s time to unlock the Hagith door and head on to new adventures! That shall be a story for another time, though. Until then, I remain Jonathan Bruce and you remain you, loyal Traipser! Make sure to tune in next time for the thrilling caper known only as Inappropriate Security Measures.

Purchase Project Northwoods at Amazon.com.   Purchase Washed Hands at Amazon.com   Purchase Improbables at Amazon.com.

< PREVIOUS ENTRYNEXT ENTRY >

AdviceFictionGamingGeneral MusingsReviews