Chantel Brink
Chantel Brink
May 3, 2024 ·  18 min read

After Leaving the Camera On, He Caught Her Doing Her Worst – a Short Story

A man named Evan faced a strange puzzle that made him question who he could trust in a world filled with odd happenings. This puzzling event changed how Evan saw himself, the people around him, and what was real. It all started when he became a widower, and his life was turned upside down. However, he had no clue about the surprises waiting for him.

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Saying Goodbye

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At a sad gathering to say goodbye to his wife, Evan watched everyone talk about her, and his family barely talked to him. Most of the visitors seemed more interested in his big house than in comforting him. When everyone finally left, Evan was alone. Feeling Alone Being alone after losing someone you love can make you see and hear things that aren’t there. Evan’s friends and family were worried about him but didn’t stay around to help. He felt their concern was temporary because only a few checked on him after the gathering.

Problems with Family Evan’s kids didn’t stick around after their mom’s goodbye. They seemed distant, maybe because they had everything they needed or because Evan was always busy. Sometimes, families grow apart without big fights. Missing Things After everyone left, only Evan’s housekeeper, Sarah, stayed with him. Then, after about a month, Evan noticed small things disappearing from his house.

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The Solution: Cameras

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Evan thought that using cameras would solve his problem. Even though using cameras seemed a bit strange, Evan didn’t have many people around to question his decision. His wife had passed away, his relationship with his kids was distant, and only a few, including his housekeeper, would wonder why he was being so cautious.

He knew putting up cameras might seem overly cautious, but it wouldn’t harm anyone. He wasn’t completely certain that Sarah, his housekeeper, was taking things, but he didn’t know her well enough to be sure. They had a few chats, and she appeared nice, but Evan couldn’t be certain.

Evan Installs Cameras

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Evan checked the recordings daily, but he didn’t find any proof, even though he kept a close eye on Sarah since she was one of the few people who visited. He and Sarah both liked the game Clue, where the joke was always about the housekeeper being the culprit.

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Evan Played Clue

New Hope, Minnesota - May 26, 2019: Hand holds a classic, vintage Clue Detective board game, from the 1990s. Made by Parker Brothers
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He liked solving mysteries and loved the game Clue. That’s why he set up the cameras; he felt like a detective in his old age. He thought Sarah, being a Clue fan, would understand. But he never told her about the cameras.


Woman cleaning table using rag and diffuser at home.
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Evan didn’t know much about Sarah except that she was professional and shared his interest in Clue. He tried to have small talks to get to know her better but didn’t have much luck. He assumed she had a family but wasn’t sure. She seemed nice, but as the saying goes, “you never know.”

Dr. Matthews Is Concerned

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Evan had regular appointments with Dr. Tim Matthews, a psychiatrist his kids made him visit after his wife’s illness. Dr. Matthews often visited Evan at his house. During one session, Dr. Matthews pointed at the camera in the corner and thought Evan was being a bit too suspicious.

Dr. Matthews, who was close to Evan’s age, felt more like a friend than just a doctor. Evan believed Dr. Matthews was always there to support him, especially during his wife’s illness. He knew Dr. Matthews cared a lot about him.

Evan Feels Resentment

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Evan felt a bit irritated despite seeing the concern on Dr. Matthews’ face. His kids forced him to see the doctor via email instead of calling. Looking at the doctor’s serious face, Evan wanted to fire him, but he knew his kids would disapprove. He thought of emailing his kids that he’d fire the doctor, saying they’d get the house anyway. But then he stopped himself. Stress from the strange events and missing his wife was making him touchy. He decided to talk to the doctor instead.

Read: A Brief History of Children Sent Through the Mail

Believe Me Or Don’t

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Evan got ready to talk to Dr. Matthews. He thought to himself that the doctor could believe him or not; it was up to him. Evan was sharp-minded despite his wife not being well at the end. He remembered being called sharp by his former military CO and knew he hadn’t lost his wits—especially not mentally.

Evan Agrees to Take Medication

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He admitted to the doctor that he noticed some missing things and was checking on the new housekeeper. Dr. Matthews seemed concerned and mentioned that after a tough event, things could get a bit confusing. Dr. Matthews suggested giving Evan some medication to help him sleep and deal with the stress. Evan knew a lot about medicine. He remembered his wife not wanting to take pills, even though he tried to help her when she was sick. Taking pills wasn’t something Evan liked, especially for stress. But he considered the doctor might be right.

What Traumatic Incident?

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The doctor mentioned a “traumatic incident,” but Evan didn’t think his wife’s passing was sudden; she had been sick for a while. He didn’t feel the same grief others did after her death. Dr. Matthews arranged for him to get the medication from the pharmacy. Evan thought the doctor didn’t believe him. He noticed more things missing from his house but decided not to tell the doctor.

Evan Doesn’t Want Another Speech

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He didn’t want to hear more about grief from the doctor, even though he was sad. He felt sure things were missing and was determined to solve the mystery, just like playing a grown-up game of Clue. Evan remembered his wife teasing him about being a detective because of his old job. He felt like his wife would want him to solve this mystery. He often felt her presence while watching the cameras.

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Evan Is Thrown Into a Mystery

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His routine included watching the cameras and taking the sleeping pills, but he found they made him feel foggy. He often woke up at night missing his wife. His life felt hazy until a new mystery shook him awake. One evening, Evan saw that the housekeeper Sarah left a canister behind. He watched the footage and was sure she wasn’t the thief. He joked that maybe there was a ghost in the house.

Evan Knows About Ghosts

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Evan had heard about ghosts and sometimes thought he heard his wife’s voice, but he knew it was just his imagination. He liked thinking she was still around, even if it was just in his mind. He teased himself, feeling like the “ghost” in the house, watching the screens closely. Though it was dull, he didn’t have anything else to do.

Sarah’s Disappearance

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Evan watched the footage as usual and saw something unexpected. At 1:57 PM, right before Sarah finished her work, she vanished from the camera. Evan was puzzled and checked the camera, but it wasn’t the camera’s fault. It was like she was there one moment and gone the next. Sarah, cleaning in the living room, vanished suddenly. Evan couldn’t understand it, and he started thinking his ghost theory might be true, feeling uncomfortable as he watched the footage again.

Where Did Sarah Go?

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Feeling worried, Evan called Sarah, but her phone was off. He didn’t know anyone else to contact. He searched the house, hoping it was just a camera glitch, but he couldn’t shake off the feeling that something was wrong. Evan didn’t want to seem bothersome, so he only called Sarah a few times, thinking maybe he’d gone overboard with his detective role. He suddenly felt like his home wasn’t safe, as if someone was playing mind games with him.

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My House Is Not My House

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Feeling frustrated, Evan couldn’t find Sarah or any explanation. He repeated to himself that his house didn’t feel like his own anymore and suspected someone might be toying with him. Evan found nothing despite looking everywhere and even checking Sarah’s cleaning supplies. He called her again, but still, there was no answer. Watching the footage repeatedly showed Sarah disappearing each time.

Something Feels Wrong

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Evan was up all night, disturbed by strange dreams. He imagined following Sarah in a dream but couldn’t find her. He thought his obsession with Sarah’s disappearance might be because he spent so much time at home, thinking too much.

Evan Sleeps Uneasily

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He knew the doctor was due the next day and would likely think he was even more paranoid. Feeling uneasy, he went to sleep, but his dreams were filled with chasing after Sarah, unable to find her. Evan woke up in the middle of the night, gasping for air, but his glass of water was missing. He felt like he was losing his mind. He went back to sleep and had a strange dream involving Sarah, Mary, and Dr. Matthews playing Clue. His cards all showed the Maid character, Mrs. White.

Dr. Matthews Learns Of The Mystery

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Evan showed Dr. Matthews the footage, explaining Sarah’s disappearance. Dr. Matthews didn’t seem as concerned and suggested it might be a technical issue with the cameras. Dr. Matthews offered stronger pills, but Evan knew they wouldn’t help with the mystery. He flushed them down the toilet when he got home.

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Is There A Ghost?

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More things went missing after Sarah’s disappearance, making Evan suspect there might be an intruder. Dr. Matthews kept calling, worrying about Evan, but he felt he had to solve this alone. Evan assessed the situation, realizing Sarah was missing, things were disappearing, and the doctor thought he was going crazy. He knew he had to solve the mystery by himself.

The Police Get Involved

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On Monday, Sarah didn’t show up, and another item vanished. Evan convinced Dr. Matthews to accompany him to the police station, seeking help with the case. Despite Dr. Matthews’ attempts to dissuade him, Evan was determined to involve the authorities. Evan felt embarrassed while recounting the story to the police, realizing he sounded foolish. Dr. Matthews was present as he provided the report. The officer promised to check with her relatives and friends. However, a few days later, the police upgraded the report to a missing person’s case.

The Police Call Evan

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The detective informed Evan that Sarah had not responded, necessitating a formal investigation. He inquired about the footage, and the detective admitted that the footage seemed peculiar considering Sarah’s status as a missing person. Evan comprehended the detective’s skepticism regarding missing persons cases. Despite feeling vindicated about the footage, He agreed to cooperate with the authorities. The detective planned to send officers to his home for questioning, which made Evan a bit anxious, even though he knew he had nothing to hide. Evan was initially unsure about having his home searched by the police but eventually agreed, hoping it would lead to finding Sarah.

The Police Are Stumped

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The police investigated Evan’s home thoroughly but found no significant leads. The case seemed to come to a standstill quickly. Feeling let down by the lack of progress, he resolved to solve the mystery alone. Although he still struggled with sleep, he felt more alive and less burdened by his grief.

What Would Mary Do?

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Evan spent time reminiscing about his life with Mary, wishing for their moments together back, even the difficult ones, to have her with him again. Even after the police search, he continued his investigation. Items were still disappearing, but now new things were appearing as well.

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A Toothbrush Shows Up

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One morning, Evan noticed his toothbrush had been replaced with a new one of a different color. It made him realize that someone was intruding into his home deliberately. He imagined the intruder purchasing a new toothbrush to play mind games. The oddness and randomness of the intrusions deeply unsettled him.

Calling Dr. Matthews (Again)

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Evan considered confiding in Dr. Matthews about the new developments but ultimately decided against it, feeling it might lead to being labeled as crazy. Dr. Matthews expressed concerns about Evan’s well-being, suggesting a break. However, he was determined to solve the mystery and felt a renewed purpose in doing so.

A Blip On The Screen

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While reviewing the camera footage after a new coffee cup appeared, Evan noticed a discrepancy: the house appeared illuminated despite the stormy weather. He suspected the footage had been altered. Evan was familiar with how his home looked in different weather conditions, and the altered footage confirmed someone tampered with the cameras.

Read: After a couple grew apart, the wife discovered a note in her husband’s pocket at his funeral – you’ll never guess what happened next

The Footage Has Been Faked

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Realizing that someone had infiltrated his house and tampered with the cameras, he immediately contacted the police to report the intrusion. Realizing that his security cameras were not secure, Evan realized his vulnerability to tech-savvy intruders. He immediately called the police to inform them of the tampered footage.

Dr. Matthews Finally Believes

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The police confiscated his cameras, and though Evan initially felt blindsided, he eventually called Dr. Matthews to share the news. Dr. Matthews sounded surprised, signifying a turning point as he finally felt a sense of belief from his neighbor psychiatrist.

Evan Is Stuck

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He could not solve the mystery despite taking precautions to catch the intruder. The house remained silent, and no signs of the intruder’s presence were detected. Evan pondered the strange occurrences and the footage being altered. His thoughts were interrupted by a call from the detective assigned to Sarah’s case, summoning him to the police station.

The Detective Calls Evan In

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The detective revealed that the camera caught the movement of a vase in Evan’s living room. The detective requested permission for another search of Evan’s home, seeking further clues in the investigation. He agreed to the search, anticipating the chance to confirm the vase’s movement. The police arrived and thoroughly searched the house but found nothing conclusive.

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Evan Trips And Falls

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While contemplating the mystery, Evan tripped over something near the fireplace, leading to a severe blow to his head that rendered him briefly unconscious. He regained consciousness after a momentary blackout and felt extreme pain but resisted going to the hospital, realizing something was amiss. Despite being in pain, Evan noticed a slight breeze emanating from the chimney, even though it was supposedly sealed.

Evan Discovers a Hidden Tunnel

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After removing the grate near the fireplace, Evan shone his phone’s light into the darkness and discovered an unseen tunnel behind it. Shocked, he realized this passageway had been right in his home all along, unnoticed due to the disuse of the fireplace. Regretting the oversight, he squeezed through the opening, feeling the cool breeze within. This hidden space was a complete surprise, given how little attention he and his wife, Mary, had paid to the old fireplace due to their health issues.

Missed Opportunities and Regrets

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Feeling a pang of regret, Evan wished he’d known about the hidden passage earlier. He almost imagined Mary’s presence and her admonishment for missing such a significant detail. Reflecting on the past, he noted that the realtor who sold them the house hadn’t mentioned this secret feature. He lamented the missed opportunity to inquire about it at the time.

The Mystery Unveils a Passageway

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As he navigated the passage, he encountered a flight of narrow stairs. His mind raced, connecting the dots: this was how the mysterious intruder had gained entry and manipulated the cameras. Despite the house being filled with valuable items from previous generations, the intruder seemed uninterested in them. Evan pondered over the intruder’s true motive.

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A Lonely Descent

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Descending further, he realized he hadn’t informed anyone of his whereabouts. He contemplated contacting Dr. Matthews, the only remaining person he could reach out to. However, with no signal on his phone, Evan continued through the passage, feeling the air getting cooler. It struck him that he might be far below ground level.

Shades of Vietnam

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Memories of his time in Vietnam, specifically a harrowing pit trap, flashed through his mind. The darkness he faced there felt all-encompassing, much like what he was experiencing in this hidden tunnel. Without his phone’s light, it would have been pitch black.

Memories and the Dark Pathway

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Reminiscences of Khe Sanh surged through Evan’s mind as he moved forward within the tunnel. The pit trap experience had left him anxious for weeks. Recalling his military training, Evan pushed forward, undeterred by the surrounding darkness. Memories of his commanding officer’s reassurance during Vietnam offered a focused distraction from the oppressive obscurity.

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Examining the Enigmatic Tunnel

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Walking through the aged passage, he found it surprisingly unremarkable. Despite the home’s age, he hadn’t considered or noticed this historic component, having underestimated its significance. Imagining individuals in 1800s attire rushing through these New England tunnels, he wondered about its hidden past. A sense of intrigue shrouded these forgotten pathways that might have served as conduits for secrets and movements.

Ominous Sensations in the Darkness

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As he journeyed through, Evan felt an eerie presence trailing him, occasionally stopping to listen for faint footsteps. Determined to press on without pause, he repeated an old mantra from his war days, urging himself not to halt. The haunted tunnel, rich with history, wouldn’t intimidate him.

The culmination of the Tunnel Journey

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Twenty minutes later, a faint light emerged at the end of the tunnel. His muscles ached, and his throbbing chin reminded him of his urgency to find the intruder and uncover Sarah’s fate. Climbing the stairs, he pushed open the door, only to be startled by the figure waiting for him on the other side.

Shocking Encounter

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Amidst the brightness of a cheerful kitchen, Evan found Dr. Matthews, who seemed unperturbed by his presence. Startled, he observed the door automatically shutting behind him, sealing off the cold tunnel from the warm kitchen space. Evan confronted the doctor, recognizing the magnitude of his involvement and demanding to know Sarah’s whereabouts.

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Sarah’s Fate and the Revelation

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Dr. Matthews revealed that Sarah, ahead of Evan, had already realized the tunnel’s existence. He disclosed the tunnel’s antiquity, mentioning its network between houses. Expressing remorse and surprise at his discovery, the doctor provided a partial explanation for her disappearance.

Mary and Dr. Matthews

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Evan’s gaze pierced Dr. Matthews, a sensation as though he’d been dealt a brutal blow. The image of the doctor, caring for Mary, running their household errands, and fixing things, stood in stark contrast to the person he once trusted. Evan was baffled, wondering what had transformed Dr. Matthews into this.

Show me your hands

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The situation perplexed Evan, unraveling before him in a way that made no sense. He felt foolish for failing to notice how these events unfolded. He fixed a gaze upon the man he once held in high regard, now questioning his integrity. Had his kids been involved, had they known all along?

Going On A Ride

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Dr. Matthews proposed a ride for answers. Evan, with an apprehensive heart, followed him. Urgent inquiries about the items taken and Sarah’s whereabouts poured out, but the doctor remained cryptic. Evan felt an ominous premonition as the car left, unseen by anyone. The gravity of the situation dawned on him; it might not end well. Dr. Matthews remained silent until Evan pressed for answers.

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Halloween Woods

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Even the woods seemed foreboding. Jack-o-lanterns, though children’s decorations, now appeared eerie, hinting at an impending doom. Evan had a haunting feeling the decorations were leading him toward an uncertain fate.

The Motive Revealed

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Dr. Matthews revealed a sinister motive: reclaiming what he believed was rightfully his – the house. A past land dispute and personal grudge fueled a convoluted plan to unsettle Evan. A dispute over property ownership ignited the conflict. Evan couldn’t comprehend the lengths to which the doctor would go for a house that was never intended for him.

It All Clunks Into Place

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Realizing his children’s involvement in the plan, Evan confronted the doctor with disdain. The elaborate scheme over a house seemed preposterous. Evan linked the entire plot to his children, which Dr. Matthews confirmed with a chilling finality. It was time to act; the situation was dire.

The Accident

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In a sudden move, Evan wrested control of the car, crashing into a tree. Matthews bore the brunt of the impact. Dazed, Evan managed to seek help, leaving the crashed vehicle behind. Seeking aid, Evan shared an incoherent version of the story with a passing driver, who agreed to take him to the police station. They arrived promptly, Evan expressing gratitude as he exited.

Finding The Doctor

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Reporting the incident, the police mobilized to various locations. Despite the crash, the whereabouts of Dr. Matthews were still unknown, raising a sense of unease in Evan. Worried about Dr. Matthews, Evan feared an escape. It left him contemplating drastic actions to ensure his safety and well-being.

Everyone Comes Clean

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Dr. Matthews was found, incapacitated, and detained, while Evan’s children faced interrogation and legal consequences. With the case closed Evan heightened his surveillance to prepare for any potential threats. Sarah remained missing, and Dr. Matthews’ silence added to his conviction. He found a new therapist and fortified his house against intrusions.

A Sense Of Peace

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The forthcoming Christmas season hinted at brighter days. Returning from the Christmas gathering, Evan felt a fleeting sense of contentment, the first semblance of happiness in months. Gazing at the serene snowfall, he embraced a newfound optimism.

Something’s Wrong

Mrs. White card from Clue
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Amidst the anticipation of restful sleep, Evan’s night took a sharp turn. A vague yet persistent unease lingered, evaporating the prior evening’s warmth. Disquieted, Evan glimpsed a Clue card on his nightstand, depicting Mrs. White, the housekeeper, raising concerns about a looming threat.

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This fictional story was inspired by stories from around the web. Any similarities between this story and actual people are purely coincidental.