Themed Thursday: Betrayal II

Are you an angel or a devil?(This is a follow-up from this site’s attempt two weeks ago of the previous prompt of Betrayal.)

You and your team are playing an adults-only exit game called Afterlife. It becomes clear, some of the way through, that two team members will have to split off from the rest of the team, one of whom is required to retrieve information from “Heaven”, the other from “Hell”. You ever-so-bravely volunteered to go to “Heaven”.

You opened a low door and made your along a short crawl-space barely a couple of feet high, then turned back on yourself for a second crawl-space on top of the first, then a third on the top of the second. This concept of going up felt in keeping with the traditional viewpoint of heaven being above, and the decor became more sky-like and the soundtrack more ethereal. At the top of the final crawlspathence, you made your way into a small, brightly lit, wonderfully bright white room.

So it turns out that “Heaven” has a big comfortable chair, with a table next to it, on top of which is a top-of-the-range coffee machine. A freshly-made cup of tea is pushed onto the table through a hidden door, along with two chocolate digestives. You look for your next challenge… and there is nothing to do but sit down.

It turns out there is a video screen in the wall – and as you sit down, a video starts to play. A handsome man and a beautiful lady, both elegantly dressed, sidle on from the sides, and start to take their jackets off. One of them blows a kiss and leaves… leaving you only your favourite sort of stripper to watch. (But how did they know? Were they tracking the motions of your pupils to see where you were looking?)

Your chosen stripper says “Hi there! Welcome to Heaven. Stay awhile. You’re in no rush to leave. Enjoy the tea, or the coffee, and the biscuits. Or perhaps you’d like something a little stronger?” You mutter “A lager would be nice”… a few seconds later, the video says “We’ll see what we can do. Just give us a few minutes.” Then the jacket comes off, and the stripper starts to undo the buttons of their shirt, one by one.

They say “So you’re here about a puzzle answer, right? The answer to the heaven puzzle… well, that’ll be with you in a moment. And here’s your drink.” The next thing through the hidden door is, indeed, a can of lager. You regret not naming a brand! The stripper then starts to talk through the puzzle you were facing, showing more and more beautifully tanned skin. You’re aware of the time limit, but the lager does look tempting – and so cold! – and there’s nothing else to do while you’re waiting for the answer to be given.

The stripper confirms everything you thought you knew about that last puzzle, while now having only a couple of garments on apart form underwear, then just before confirming the answer you’re missing, says “One more thing. Stay here. You can be more use to your team here than back in the room, because if you stay here, I’ll tell you all about the puzzles that are coming up and how to solve them. And if you stay here for just two more minutes, you’ll get some cold, hard cash to take away with you. The answer you’re after is seventeen.”

You hadn’t seen someone stripping while explaining puzzles before, but you have now, and it’s remarkable how good they are at both halves of it. The stripper directs you to a box on the wall… and suddenly a stream of coins falls out of it. They fall into another box below, which directs them back out of the room, but you can catch them as they stream. Sure, they’re only 5ps and 10ps, but a double handful of them adds up, and you wonder just how much you can stuff in your pockets.

So you’re in an exit game, and there’s this person you can’t take your eyes off, but you have some lovely drinks to drink and biscuits, and someone’s pushed a very cute-looking cake through to enjoy as well, and you’re getting the answers to the puzzles so your team will be really happy with you when you get back to them and it’s all confusing and overwhelming but in a good sort of way and… er, would you look at that.

OK. Now you know how to solve the next three puzzles and they sound like really good puzzles and you’re looking forward to getting back and solving them, but if you just wait for three more minutes and learn the answers to the last puzzle then you’ll get a T-shirt to keep as well as everything else. And the stripper… well, that doesn’t leave much to the imagination, does it?

Well, this wasn’t how you expected this game to turn out. The stripper has put on quite a show, and you’ve had a lovely little snack, and got a handful of cash, and a voice asked you your shirt size, and a couple of minutes later a bag came into the room with a shirt in your size.

And all the lights suddenly go from white to red. The stripper has gone. The mood has suddenly changed, and the angelic pan-pipes have been replaced with a loud, discordant buzz. What you can now see on the screen is… well, that looks like your team, and they seem to be going mad waiting for you.

“YOU GREEDY FOOL! FEEL LIKE WEARING THAT T-SHIRT? IT HAS A VERY INTERESTING MESSAGE:

I SCREWED OVER MY TEAM AND ALL I GOT WAS THIS LOUSY T-SHIRT.

HERE’S THE VIDEO OF YOU WASTING TIME, EATING AND DRINKING. IF YOU DON’T WANT ME TO SHOW IT TO YOUR TEAM, DROP EVERYTHING – DON’T TAKE THE SHIRT, DON’T TAKE THE COINS, DON’T TAKE ANYTHING WITH YOU, LEAVE IT ALL BEHIND.

OH, AND ALL THE ANSWERS YOU’VE HEARD ARE WRONG.”

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