Lore of the Ring, Round 56: Murder at the Lore Quiz

by Laiquendi

It's a Mystery...

Ladies and Gentlemen, Honoured Guests and Assorted Nobility, Persons of Good, Evil and Those of Moral Ambiguity, Favoured Friends and Fearsome Enemies, Intellectual Elite and Unintellectual Funlovers, you have been conveniently gathered here today at this picturesque country home in the middle of nowhere in order to solve the most fiendish mystery ever to be devised by man! One of the suspects assembled here before you has committed an act most foul and dastardly, such that only the combined brainpower of myself, Lord Hercules Marple Holmes Horatio MacGrissom Digby Chicken Caesar Dunnit (but you may call me Hugh for short) can fathom out what occurred here last night! Draw the curtains, light the candles, thumb your notebooks and re-adjust your monitor resolutions for all shall be revealed in:

Murder at the Lore Quiz!

*cue fearsome and fiendish musical score*

Gallantly dressed in a bright pink deerstalker hat, blue pinstripe suit and bright white trainers, the hero of the hour, Lord Hugh Dunnit saunters across the elaborately decorated Victorian-era dinning room beadily eying each of the six suspects sat at convenient locations around the room.

“These are the facts at hand, gathered by the best criminalists in Middle-Earth.” Hugh boldly decried from his vantage point in the centre of the room as he watched the flustered faces of the assorted guests. “Last night at approximately 2.74pm in the afternoon, The Right Honourable Sir Marmalade Strawberry Croissant with Butter, known affectionately as ‘Bob’, the mysterious benefactor who called each of you here to discuss some unknown triviality under mysterious circumstances, was found dead!”

Astonished gasps erupted from the gathered guests, followed by rapid fanning of their faces by the ladies and quickly darting eyes from the menfolk.
“But that is not all,” Hugh continued with dramatic flair becoming of an expert murder mystery detective, “For he was discovered outside the front door of this picturesque countryside home immerse in copious quantities of a red-coloured corn-syrup based liquid pretending not to breath! Upon further examination it was confirmed - he was dead! The handily available coroner could not determine cause of death due to the victim having suffered extensive bone fractures across his entire body!”

More shocked gasps rippled through the guests, followed by even more rapid fanning of the ladies’ delicate compositions.

“The die has been cast, ladies and gentlemen. The cards have been shuffled and dealt. The ball is out of the court. The horses have left the stable. The video download is already buffering! ‘Who has done this vile deed?’ I hear you ask, well let’s find out!” Hugh proclaimed with well timed flair and extravagance while waving his finger at all of the suspicious guests.

“First, Professor Plum.” Hugh said, his finger stopping directly in front of the old man seated in the armchair in the corner of the room.

“Me?” Plum sputtered, almost spitting out his generously portion of brandy. “That’s preposterous. I am a feeble old man, white with the years and frail like a schoolgirl. I could no more kill my old friend Bob than chew my own food! It takes my five minutes just to get out of this chair!”

“Really?” Hugh pondered loudly as he watched the old man stroke his long white beard trying to squeeze out the last dregs of spilt brandy. “I find that hard to believe when you were spotted just the other morning out chopping wood in the forest. I know that you are more than the feeble old schoolgirl you pretend to be, a fact this certificate in black belt karate signed last month very well proves.”

“Hmmph” Plum mumbled under his breath and took another sip of his brandy. “I am a simple professor of magical artefacts and curios. I have risen to the highest position in my order through sheer cunning and skill. I do not lower myself to such things as petty criminals.”

“So you say, Professor, but could you be the murderer?” Hugh said with a raised eyebrow as the Professor took a long swig of brandy and shot the detective a wizened stare.

“We turn next to the second of our illustrious guests – Mrs Peacock!” Hugh cried swivelling round to point at the elegantly dressed lady in blue perched on a dining chair, her long golden hair tied in a bun on her head.

“Me, darling? Oh you do have a penchant for the bizarre.” Mrs Peacock giggled, lightly fanning herself as her stunning eyes brightened the room. “I am a respectable lady of noble birth, darling. It would not do for one such as I to be involved in a vile thing like murder. A lady has standards after all.”

That prompted a ripple of laughter from the Reverend seated next to her which was swiftly greeted by a slap to his face with her fan. Looking extremely satisfied with the smarting Reverend, she calmly readjusted her fan and continued.

“My powers may be far and wide but my husband deals with the day-to-day tasks of running our estate. I am a kind and generous philanthropist to those lost in my land” She said slowly now, twisting the blue-stoned ring sitting atop her finger.

“But ma’am, while you are known for your calm and understanding manner… ahmm… I’m sure if the right circumstances presented themselves you could be turned into a vicious assailant.” Hugh spoke softly, walking slowly away from the noble lady to just out of fan-range.

Mrs Peacock said nothing in response but calmly adjusted her vibrant blue dress and put on a stunningly deceptive smile as she shook out her fan.
“Each to his or her own, I’m sure…” She said finally and resumed her stately seating to gulps from the other men in the room.

“Next, to Colonel Mustard!” Hugh pivoted, pointing to the man dressed in full military regalia by the front room window attempting to stuff two sandwiches in his mouth before anyone noticed they were missing from the serving tray.

He quickly swallowed and rubbed off the crumbs, his face the perfect example of stern stoicism despite the conspicuous splodge of blackcurrant jam running down his chest.

“I may have killed in the past, Dunnit, but the past is but a memory.” Mustard replied as he adjusted the horse-emblazoned crest adorning his jacket and wiped the jam onto the nice clean carpet to the dismay of Mrs White.

“You are a trained killer, are you not?” Hugh questioned as he moved closer, carefully avoiding the lump of fruit preserve. “A man that has rode to battle many times and is no stranger to the herald of death.”

“’Tis all true.” Mustard replied with equal amounts sorrow and pride, throwing back the mane of long blonde hair crowning his face in a regal manner. “But I was exiled from my home, a victim of underhanded lies and rumours. I have only just regained my rightful position following the, ahmm, untimely demise of a close relative.”
“A wild polecat with a banana is just as dangerous as a mongoose with a lisp, as I’m sure you’d agree, Colonel.” Hugh posited then swiftly backed off at the confused look in the warrior’s eyes. Feeling that now would be a good time to move on, Hugh turned dramatically to the blonde lady spread out seductively on the chaise lounge beside the Colonel. “But what about you, Miss Scarlet!?”

“Me?” Scarlet said sweetly, absent-mindedly twirling her hair in her fingers. “I couldn’t hurt a mouse, as my many lovers would attest too” She winked at Hugh, causing all the men in the room to cough and readjust their positions.

“I would hastily disagree, Madame, if only because I know you to be a compulsive liar!” Hugh quickly recovered, as an exclaimed shock erupted and the large frame of Mrs White fell to the ground with a gasp.

“Is it not true then Miss Scarlet, that last night you were spotted dressed as a man running to the stables! A ploy perhaps? To escape? Or maybe to throw attention away from yourself onto a family member?”

“I have no idea what you mean.” Scarlet waxed lyrically, tenderly re-applying her plump, dark red lipstick and smacking her lips as it dried.

“Is it also not true, that you, Miss Scarlet, are in fact the sister of Colonel Mustard!” Hugh shouted, rounding on the seductress while also carefully shielding his eyes from the bright glare of the lipstick.

Even more shocked gasps exploded from the guests, prompting Mrs White (who had quickly recovered) to stand up and shout “I knew it!”

“You are indeed a thorough investigator!” Miss Scarlet bemoaned with a delicate sigh, adjusting the bosom of her red dress and turning her face away in shame. “Woe is me! Would not someone comfort me in my hour of need?” Prompting all the men to quickly mutter excuses and look aimlessly at the ceiling, making Scarlet groan and slump back into her lounging.

“Which leads us on to you, Reverend Green.” Hugh said quickly avoiding the red temptress, and turning to the strict man sitting on the chair next to Mrs Peacock. “A man of the cloth, so noble and respectable but one hiding dark secrets in his past!”

“I... I… have no idea what you mean.” Green stuttered, shifting nervously on his seat as sweaty beads formed on his forehead. “I am a simple man, offering aid to the restless and the weary. A guide to those who need direction.”

“Yet conveniently miss off the fact that you were once a great general in the army, and led your people in fierce battle. Who knows what deeds you committed in days gone by?!” Hugh said with added gusto, elaborately waving his hands at the shifting man.

“I am a man of exposition, nothing more.” Green calmly said, standing up to defend himself. “A leader of my people, one of the few left perhaps, but never a murderer!”
“Is it also not true, Reverend, that Mrs Peacock is in fact, your mother-in-law!” Hugh shouted as more gasps rung out, and Mrs. White stood up and shouted “I knew it!” again. “And that you came here after being blackmailed by Mrs Peacock following the marriage of your daughter, her grand-daughter, to a commoner!”
“It’s all true! It’s all true! She’d never let me forget it!” The Reverend collapsed back in his chair and broke down in tears, wiping his face along his sleeve as Mrs Peacock looked on with daggers in her brilliant eyes.

“So finally to you, Mrs White!” Hugh cried as he turned on the diminutive woman standing by the fireplace. “Who is not actually a woman!”

All eyes turned to the plump cook, as she mumbled something culinary then slowly pulled off her white hat to reveal a mop of brown curly locks.
“How did you know?” Mrs White asked with wide-eyed astonishment. “I thought no one would guess!”

To which all the other guests being to mutter that it was fairly obvious and they had known for quite some time after she was seen entering the men’s lavatories.
“I loved this white apron so much that I just couldn’t resist!” She blurted out. “How else could I have gotten in here to make my wondrous rabbit stew! All my life I’ve dreamed of cakes and roses, and when I found this cook’s outfit I just couldn’t resist!”

“Indeed, Mrs White, the stew was delicious. A fine example of your… mmm… skill” Hugh replied under vicious glares from Mrs White, before returning to the middle of the room.

“So now we have the suspects – what of the murder weapons?” He said, looking at the assorted miscreants that he called guests. “First, the disappearance of the sword from the armoury. A magical sword no less, such that it glows in the dark, handed down through generations as an heirloom.”

“I had a little accident while polishing.” said Mrs White, kneading her hands in her apron. “It sort of fell off the wall and stung my hand. I don’t know nothing, honest!” She took on a defensive gaze and pointed her finger at the Professor. “What about the large spherical paperweight from the Professor’s study?”

“A useless objet d’art, to be sure.” Professor Plum spoke up angrily, annoyed that he was awakened from his unnoticed slumber in the corner. “One of seven that were made, and pointless without its companions. It must have rolled off the desk, because I’ve no idea where it went.” He picked up his now empty brandy glass with a scowl plastered over his long face, from the empty glass or Mrs White, no-one was quite sure.

“I’m sure I saw that ball of yours near the bushes under the window,” Miss Scarlet offered up. “It could be very dangerous if someone slipped on it, how careless of you to let these things go missing.”

She smiled coyly and battered her eyelids at the grumpy old man, who mumbled and refilled his glass with brandy. “Then there is the mysterious rope that went missing from the Reverend’s climbing equipment.”

“A fine example of workmanship, that rope was.” Reverend Green started to say. “Silvery-grey in colour, it always came back to you when you needed it. But for some reason this time it has vanished without a trace…” He held his hands up with a sigh while shifting suspiciously on his chair. “And what about the strange-smelling herbs that Miss Scarlet uses to sweeten her tea?”

“A common plant.” Miss Scarlet quickly butted in. “Nothing to worry about. It is purely medicinal and has great healing powers… in the right hands of course.” She added with a wink at the Reverend making him quickly gulp his cup of tea and look away.

“Phew! This is getting long! Can someone pass the sandwiches before we die of starvation!” cried out Harry and Ron from beneath their invisibility cloak, wedged between the grand piano and Mrs Peacock’s bottomless handbag.

“Any particular flavour, dearies?” Mrs White queried as she walked to the half-empty serving tray next to the crumb-stained Colonel. “Some red herring if you’ve got it!” the boys replied quickly before promptly vanishing again.

“From complex forensic evidence-gathering, our criminalists have determined that the murder must have happened somewhere in the grounds of this estate, so everyone will need an alibi for their whereabouts last night! Where were you, Mrs Peacock, around 3.81pm in the morning?” Hugh rounded on the older woman.

“My darling, I went for a walk in the woods at the rear of the estate. It helps to clear my thoughts after a long, arduous day.” Mrs Peacock said softly, her eyes fixated on Hugh. “The trees are peaceful by the river, where I can relax with my mirror.”

“The witch’s wood!” Colonel Mustard shouted out angrily at the regal lady. “Nothing but trickery and mists! Don’t go in there alone!” He cried out with alarm, muttering something under his breath about haunted jam sponge.

“What about you then, Colonel Mustard, where were you at 1.51am in the afternoon?” Hugh countered, turning on the masculine gentleman.

“No where.” The Colonel said gruffly. “I was taking a stroll in the great hall of the south wing - alone. It brings back fond memories of home with its golden coloured sheen.”

“And as I recall, Colonel, no weapons are allowed in that room.” Miss Scarlet added with a sly smile. “Therefore he couldn’t have done it.”

“What about your whereabouts, Reverend Green?” Hugh twisted around to the meagre man.

“I was off visiting my parishioners by the harbour at the western entrance.” The Reverend replied curtly. “A healthy bout of sea air never hurt anyone. I was watching the ships sail away from the troubles of the world.”

“I can vouch for the Reverend, for I spied him on his way back.” Professor Plum piped in, re-adjusting his long white beard. “I had just found this nice little pub not far from the north gate when I saw him go.”

“Can anyone vouch for you at this so-called pub?” Hugh questioned.

“I should say so, but the barman’s a bit slow on the uptake. Keeps forgetting people, the old fool! There were lots of regulars there though, big and little. I’m sure you can find someone if you ask around.” The Professor grumbled dismissively and sank back into his chair.

“A lot of unsavoury types frequent that pub.” Mrs White added, “I bet half of them would be lying.” Which prompted a vicious glower from the Professor and several grumblings about the value of a fine beer.

“That just leaves you then, Mrs White. Where were you last morning at 17.90am in the evening?” Hugh said finally, turning on the portly cook.

“I was cleaning the tower atop of this estate.” She replied slowly. “It is very high up there and gets very dirty since the refurbishment. It was demolished several years ago but has just been rebuilt by a wealthy foreign investor. It was so dirty as to be almost entirely black!”

“So it was your eyes I saw gleaming in the sunlight at the top of the tower?” Miss Scarlett asked with a decidedly ominous tone. “Those steeps are awfully treacherous…” To which Mrs White gulped but offered up no further response.

“So without further ado, I have thought long and hard on the matter of this most fiendish murder. The evidence clearly points in only one direction. I now know who committed this disturbing crime!” Hugh told the gathered party after parading around the room with his thinking cap on.

“So, who done it?” Mrs Peacock enquired politely getting a little hungry and feeling like a tea break was in order.

“Hugh done it?” said Colonel Mustard suddenly, reaching for the fire poker. “The detective done it?”

“He’s who dunnit!” Mrs White screamed, racing to get her frying pans.

“No, I’m Hugh Dunnit.” said Hugh. “It was one of you who did it!”

“That’s what she said, Hugh done it.” Miss Scarlet told him lazily, reaching into her handbag.

“I never trusted that man.” The Professor grumbled from his armchair. “Got shifty eyes and a bad haircut. Never trust a man with a bad haircut”

“He admitted it!” Mrs Peacock cried out, rising swiftly from her chair. “Police, arrest him!”

“Oh no…” ruminated the Reverend, sinking deeper into his chair.

Fearing for his life, Hugh quickly leapt onto the dining room table away from the assorted ramble and pointed his finger at the murderer. “You done it!”

“I knew it!” shouted Mrs. White.

Who were the six suspects?

1. Professor Plum:
2. Mrs Peacock:
3. Colonel Mustard:
4. Miss Scarlet:
5. Reverend Green:
6. Mrs White:

What were the possible murder weapons?


What places did the suspects use as their alibis?


Extra point: Who done it, with what weapon, and where?

Was it Professor Plum with the Candelabra in the Dining Room?
Mrs Peacock with a Whip on Mount Doom?
Aragorn in the Bath with the Loofer?

Don’t be late or the banana gets it!

Full terms and conditions can be found here but follow at your own peril for weird and wondrous things lurk beyond the link. No bananas were harmed in the making of this quiz, although three kiwi fruits were sat on by mistake. All characters are trademarked Laiquendi’s Unfathomable Brain ® c/o Dr Horrible’s Sing-a-Long Blog. ‘Twas brillig, and the slithy toves did gyre and gimble in the wabe; all mimsy were the borogoves, and the mome raths outgrabe. "Beware the Jabberwock, my son! The jaws that bite, the claws that catch! Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun the frumious Bandersnatch!" He took his vorpal sword in hand: long time the manxome foe he sought—So rested he by the Tumtum tree, and stood awhile in thought. And as in uffish thought he stood, the Jabberwock, with eyes of flame, came whiffling through the tulgey wood, and burbled as it came! One, two! One, two! and through and through the vorpal blade went snicker-snack! He left it dead, and with its head he went galumphing back. "And hast thou slain the Jabberwock? Come to my arms, my beamish boy! O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!" He chortled in his joy. 'Twas brillig, and the slithy toves did gyre and gimble in the wabe; all mimsy were the borogoves, and the mome raths outgrabe. If you are still reading this, then within four hours, seventeen minutes and thirty-nine seconds you will be dead. You have been warned!