Swamped Chapter 41 Page 6

You check your suit, and find that the Host has left you with your pen and notepad. So you set to work trying to think up an escape plan… being careful how much you write down, in case the Host takes a look at the notepad at some point.

But you can’t really think of anything beyond “make a hole in the wall”, and you don’t know if you even have the tools for that. Even if you did, the mechanical servants would probably stop you.

The sense of powerlessness is so unsettling that your mind keeps drifting to other things. More than once, you find yourself doodling rough plans for the sound amplifier, just because that’s a problem you know how to solve. At least you’re not Theodore; the way he works when he’s stressed, he’d probably have built the damn thing already.

One of the servants, perhaps detecting your stress, approaches the tea table expectantly, holding up a pot. You nod weakly, and accept it.

The tea helps you feel a bit better, but you still can’t figure out what you want to be doing.

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Odd…the tea in your cup is vibrating in some interesting patterns…something here is emmitting vibrations on a sub-audible level…with the right set up you could detect where it’s coming from and what it is.

Set the tea on various surfaces and see if you can detect changes in its vibrations.

And that gets you thinking…

Even if you can’t think of an escape plan, maybe you can devise a way to gain more information about your captor and surroundings.


A prototype sound amplifier might be able to double as an eavesdropping device with little modification. With some additional calibration, you could use the bouncing sound waves to detect open corridors and cavities beyond your prison.

…make a hole in the wall, indeed!

Author’s Note:

At this point, I felt the need to point something out to the suggesters, because I had a concept I was working with for Simone as a character but hadn’t entirely made it clear in the text. And the suggestions were conflicting with that concept, so I had to adapt them to fit it, which was a lot more work.

On this update, I included the following note:

From the last couple of suggestions, I think I may not have made this clear enough in the adventure itself, so I’m going to say it here.

Simone is not an expert with machinery. She’s an expert in how sound travels.

That’s not to say she hasn’t picked up a thing or two in the various odd jobs she’s done around camp, but it’s a secondary skill, one she hasn’t really made extra effort to develop. She knows a little bit in a lot of disciplines, but she’s not really an expert in anything except sound.

I bring this up because the last couple of suggestions were really hard to work with, as they conflicted with my concept of the character. In fairness, I didn’t make this concept super-clear in the writing; but I’d like to have suggestions I can use a bit more readily, so I’m mentioning it here in hopes that people can adjust suggestions accordingly.

Thanks for understanding.