Murder at the Blackburn Boarding House
The year is 1898. The Blackburn Boarding House for Witches, Ghouls, & Monsters is a place of refuge for the neglected and underprivileged macabre in Wild West wizarding society. It is owned and operated by Mortimer and Benjamin Blackburn, who are identical twin brothers who emigrated from the old country.
They also run a traveling magical mercantile store and a modest wizarding academy for students of all ages. These businesses center around the same physical location, and have been in the Hobblecreek, Utah community for many years.
Every weekend the brothers host a magical marketplace where folks from the wizarding community gather to buy and sell their wares. This market usually lasts most of the day and sometimes into the evening.
A few weeks ago two wizarding villains wantonly robbed the local muggle bank. While one of the brigands was caught, the other escaped. Rather than allow the story to fester amongst the non-magical population and bring attention to the magical community, local wizarding law enforcement fabricated an alternative scenario where the escapee was “killed,” rather than got away; obliviation and memory charms were used in abundance.
Despite his unwillingness to disclose his partner’s identity, memories of the escapee were pulled from the partner in custody, and an identity was established: it was Teddy the Truculent, a wanted murderer. A bounty has been put on his head.
It just so happens that this evening, at the close of the market, one of the residents’ bodies has been discovered in the root cellar. Kate the Courtesan has been murdered! She could be described as a soft-spoken, full-bodied woman with a gruff voice.
The body is found wearing a generous, curvy frock, a big blue bonnet, and an overabundance of rouge and lipstick. She had been a new tenant, having just moved in one week previous.
Sheriff Canolig and his deputy have come to investigate. The body was just hauled away as everyone is just sitting down to dinner.
one of the two owners of the Blackburn Boarding House who also personally runs the magical mercantile store
Sheriff Henry Canolig
the wizarding sheriff based locally in Springville
Professor Stanislaus Diavol
a vampire and tenant of the boarding house
the grounds keeper and butler of the Blackburn Manor
a tenant and unusually dark, wealthy widow to seven husbands
Doktor Karloff Kieselstein
a mad scientist and tenant of the boarding house
a witch who is the oldest of the three Kyllinger sisters and also tenant of the boarding house
a witch who is the sister of Clara and MaryAnn who was recently released from the local santorium and is a tenant of the boarding house
a witch who is the nicest sister of the Kyllingers and is a tenant of the boarding house
Deputy Sheriff Teresa Twelvepott
a witch who both runs an apothecary booth and is the deputy sheriff of Springville. She does not live at the boarding house.
a witch with a gambling gift who is a tenant at the boarding house.
Thaddeus Arthur Grimshaw
when he was in his prime, he was a British treasure hunter, but now he is a ghost who haunts the boarding house
an employee of the mercantile store and is a tenant of the boarding house
typical zombie maid who is happy to help in the kitchen. Doesn’t have too many expectations for herself. Has an unexpected green thumb (literally and figuratively).
zombie gardener who not only grows and harvests mushrooms, but is cultivating a deep desire to discover his own roots.
step-cousin four times removed of Zeddy who is fully expected to come into town some time today from down south. He's been a zombie since the days of the Mexican-American War when a bruja negra awoke and enlisted him as an undead fighter against his will.
Marie Michelle "Shelly" Schystre
ambitious newspaper reporter witch who has come to collect information about a new and sensational story
The Great Madame Zarina
A brand new resident who has just moved into the house this afternoon. She just arrived on the train this morning from Romania, speaks with a thick accent, and apparently has a gift of telling fortunes.
The Star-Crossed Mummy of Amenhotep
An idealistic and inspiring but uniquely slow resident of the Blackburn Boarding House who rarely emerges from his sarcophagus. He suffers from memory loss, having had his brain removed many millenia earlier.
Kate the Courtesan
The full-bodied woman who liked to play cards who recently had moved into the boarding house and who has just now been found dead in the basement.
Arvi the dwarf
A swarthy, bearded, short miner who is a friend of the Blackburns. He accompanies his traveling partner Kristopher, and has just arrived this afternoon.
Kris is a returning resident and long time friend of the Blackburn Brothers. He is an ambitious, kind, and older man with a round belly, a white beard, and a cheery smile. He has just returned this afternoon along with his friend and colleague, Arvi.
Before The Big Day
Master Mortimer will send you a top secret document telling you more about yourself and your role the night of the murder. Be sure to read this carefully, print it or keep a copy of it on your phone in the event you need to refresh yourself with the details.
This murder mystery is a combination of an Escape Room, the movie Clue, and the game Mafia. Additionally, everyone in attendance dresses up and plays their role until the game concludes; we discover the killer.
The goal is either to deduce who committed the crime, or if you’re the killer, you want to try to keep from getting discovered.
If your private description doesn’t tell you that you were the killer, you are not it.
While costumes aren’t required, it is essential you get into character. Costumes are strongly encouraged. If necessary, the Blackburn Boarding House has costume pieces you may borrow during the event.
It is imperative that participants are familiar with their character details. Each character plays a distinct role in the on-going story, and when players aren’t prepared, it can create difficulties for the group. If you aren’t familiar with words, terms, or ideas presented in your character outline, feel free to contact us at the Blackburn Boarding House, and we’ll give you context. (208) 819-7131
Overall, the more time and attention you put into your preparations (costume and study), the more fun you will have; it will simplify your interactions with each other, and it will help your experience be a fun, entertaining, and hilarious night.
What To Do When You First Arrive
Upon arrival, there will be a tour of the Blackburn Boarding House where you’ll get to know the layout of the house. Take note!
There will also be a period of time before dinner when you will have the chance to meet and mingle with the other characters.
If at any point during the game you want to improvise, feel free to get up and move throughout the house. THIS IS PLAY! Consider the entire Blackburn Manor your stage.
Relationships mentioned in your character descriptions are important! Don’t hesitate to be silly with how you imply your character’s feelings and desires; it is meant to be innocuous, fun, humorous, and entertaining for yourself and the group; the more outlandish and over-the-top interactions you can have with each other, the more enjoyable it will be for everyone. Further, there are details that will come to light as you let your character’s objectives emerge!
One more thing- don't hesitate to ask questions; the clues are in the details. Leave no stone unturned!