“Welcome to my home,” Richard is grinning as wide as his face allows as Abby, Beth, Charlie, Daphne, and Ethan enter the dining room, leading them is none other than Micky. The dining room is on the grander side of the mansion, not far from the grand entrance. A long rectangular table occupies the center of the room with a red tablecloth with gold lining running from one end to the other.
“Please pick a chair, any chair and sit.” Richard is the first to sit at the head of the table. He can no longer stand for more than a few minutes after an accident from long ago. “I heard about your journeys, you must be starving. Micky, will you head to the kitchen to check on the food?”
Slowly, one by one, the Five pick a chair, which matches the colors of the tablecloth, and sit. It’s been almost two hours since they arrived at the mansion and settled into their lodging for the next few days. Everyone had a change of wardrobe, everyone except Beth who is still wearing her ripped jeans and camouflage color t-shirt. Meanwhile, Abby has changed into a gray pant suit and bright red pumps, Daphne into a short floral dress and pink high heels, and Charlie and Ethan both settled on white button-down shirts, black jeans, and sneakers.
As the food arrives, Abby begins to feel a sense of unease, like something at this pit of her stomach gnawing at her. There’s something familiar with this Richard Hitchcock and it’s not his novels.
Though Abby has read a few of his novels, she’s never seen a photo of him. In fact, there had never been any photos of Richard Hitchcock, not in the book jacket, not on Goodreads, Abby doesn’t even think this guy’s ever appeared on Good Morning America. How in hell did this guy managed to sell a gazillion books let alone land so many freaking movie deals?
Seated across from Abby, Ethan stares at Richard. Have I met this guy before? Ethan wonders. He looks very familiar.
Unlike Abby, Ethan has never once read a Richard Hitchcock novel before. He hardly picks up anything other than a playboy magazine these days and often, it’s skimming and browsing during his 15 minutes mandatory break as the barista at the bookstore coffee shop.
“Ethan, do you have something to say?” Richard’s words snap Ethan out of his thoughts as Ethan suddenly realizes he’s staring at Richard with his mouth half open like he’s getting to speak.
“Huh, uh no. I was just admiring this impressive room.”
Theme: The Mystery of the Millionaire Mansion
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