(Warning: Heavy reading incoming. I suggest writing stuff down...)
It's now the year 2150, and you're one of the few people who didn't leave earth twenty years ago. Why? A deadly disease overtook the planet, and you happen to have immunity. There are now less than ten million people on the planet - the rest have either died, or left on a voyage to find a new planet to colonize.
Being the workaholic detective that you are, you haven't taken a vacation in years, and your boss has demanded that you use your vacation days or lose them - You decide to go on a cruise trip to relax a bit. Approaching the cruise liner, you see the steward waiting at the boardwalk. You seem to be the only passenger there. Taking a quick glance at the boat, you notice that the boat is very old, but still kept quite nicely. It looks just like the ones made in 2009.
Walking up to the steward, you notice his name tag;
Chang, it says. He's dressed nicely, pen in one hand, hologram-board in the other. As soon as you stop in front of him, he starts speaking, "Welcome aboard the C.C.L RuhRoh! You have the great honor of being on her last voyage. This time, we will be traveling for 15 days, making no stops until we reach Australia. This will be a one way trip, and you will be flown back here from Australia at the end of this trip. May I see your ticket, good sir?"
The cheerful tone of Chang really brought your spirits up. "Sure thing," you respond, and you hand him your ticket. "Where are all the other passengers?" you ask.
Chang takes a quick look at his hologram-board, and responds, "They're already all aboard. Our passenger count for this trip totals at 15, including."
Only 15 passengers? Shrugging, you think, Well, it's an older ship, after all. "Oh, alright. I notice that this ship seems to be of an older design. Was it refurbished?"
"You noticed? This was the Seabourne Odyssey from 2009! Not very many people know that. However, all we really did was change the name and give it a paint job. Oh, we added some updates to the balconies. There are now separators spaced on it to provide each room with it's own personal balcony. They're still just as wide as before, great for a breath of fresh air - in fact, in our larger rooms near the front, the balconies have been slightly extended to allow a bit more walking room. We updated the engine as well - the ship now runs nuclear, and everything is AI operated. As a matter of fact, we only have access to the areas that were previously available to the public. Even I can't get into the engine room if I wanted to, so believe me, it's very safe. Luckily for us, the ship hasn't been changed enough for us to create a new deck plan. Here's a copy for you to reference while you are here."
(To get a better view of the floorplan, drag the picture into a new tab - it's a lot bigger than you think it is)
Chang smiles, and leads you inside. "I will take you to the other passengers - right now, they're getting to know each other on Deck 7, at the Seabourn Square. I suggest you do the same, you'll be with these people for the next two weeks. The ship will leave in approximately 1 hour." "And which room do I have?" "You're on Deck 8, room 830. I'll take your luggage up. Have a nice day, sir." With that, you have reached Seabourn Square, and Chang heads off to put away your belongings. Turning towards the square, you head in, looking at everyone out of habit. Here's what you notice;
There is a married couple (ring seen on fingers) talking to another male, mid 30s, well built, groomed, and good looking
There are 3 30-40 year old males at the coffee bar, in leather jackets, bald, beer gut; you instantly can tell that they're part of a biker gang
There are 2 25-30 year old males at one of the tables, socializing with someone who seems to be in his 50s.
There is another couple, very rich (evident of the bling they're wearing, and the rediculously massive diamond ring on the wife's finger). They seem to be shopping at the Seabourn Shop with a girl in her 20s. That girl is dressed nicely, but not expensively enough to associate her with the couple.
There's a man sleeping in one of the chairs, and a teenager sleeping in a different chair. The teenager is very well dressed, and his shades seem very expensive. The man is well groomed, and well built - he seems to be a very fit man.
Not wanting to wake up the sleeping passengers, you head towards the males at the coffee bar, and take a seat beside them. After chatting with them a bit, you confirm that they indeed are part of a biker gang. Their names are Jack, Jerome, and Julian. Talking with them, they seem to be heavy gamblers, but very kind people. They tell you that the only reason they're in a biker gang is because it helps to deter potential trouble from the streets - "muggers are less likely to attack if you're part of a gang," they say.
Now that you've made friends with them, you head off to the next group. You notice that the rich couple in the shop is still shopping, and the husband is carrying more and more stuff. It's almost as if he's buying anything his wife asks for. You move to the tables, and initiate a conversation with the three males there. Talking a bit with the older male reveals that he is a mathematics professor who goes by Dr. Brofonomo at the I.I.S (International institute of Schooling).
"What about the two of you?" you ask. "What are your names, and what do you do?"
"Well, the department calls us the WTF partners. That's cus we grew up in the streets, and we don't remember our real names anymore. My name is Double You. My partner here is Tee Eff. See, together, we make DoubleYouTeeEff!"
"Ah, but what do you do?"
"If we said we were cops, would you believe it?"
"I don't know, I'd have to see some sort of proof..."
"How about our pieces?" they said rather loudly. They pull back their blazers and you see that each of them is equipped with the standard issue P-139 plasma pistol. It's a superb weapon, and has an effective range of 150 meters. Police versions come equipped with a thermal scope, and the weapon is strong enough to blast through 3 or 4 layers of wall before dissipating. It's hard enough to find one of them in the black market, let alone two, so it's definitive proof that they're cops. You chat a bit more and discover that all three of them are really big gamblers, and judging by the way the cops act, they seem prone to violence (And honestly, unfit to be cops). You disregard that, however, and move away from this group, determined to make the most out of your night.
A glance over at the shop confirms your earlier suspicions. The wife is definitely just picking out whatever she wants, and the husband is buying and carrying everything. Feeling a bit of pity, you walk over and decide to help the poor man out. "Hi there, that looks heavy. Can I help you?"
As he hands you some bags, he says "Thank you good sir. My name is George, how are you doing this fine day? Excited for this trip? I sure am!" Unable to contain himself, he whispers to you,"I have a fetish for neglect play, and my wife promised that she wou-" His wife interrupts him. She isn't wearing a lot of makeup, and it looks like she's in her mid 20's. She points to an expensive antique necklace, priced at about 5 times your yearly salary. Without a second thought, the husband whips out his wallet. You instantly notice that it has a diamond card in it, which is only available to the richest of the rich. Proceeding to pay with it, you glance around, and notice that the wife is in a very deep discussion with the other girl. You ask for her name (The girl), to which you receive "Carol". A bit of chatting reveals that Carol's family all recently passed away in an accident. She went on this trip and brought her families ashes with her so that they could have some "Quality Family time, y'know?" She's a lot more cheery than most people who've just lost all the family they had left... A little too cheery. You reach out to shake her hand, but she gives you a look of disgust and turns back to the wife. Reluctant to interact with her anymore than necessary, you return to conversation with George. He points out his son, Max, who is the younger person sleeping in the chair that you noticed earlier, and mentions that his wife is named Giselle. After a bit more small talk, you leave the group.
Taking in a deep breath, you prepare to move to the next group. Socializing isn't easy, but the night is almost over. Looking around again, you notice that the fit man who was sleeping earlier is now with the couple that was talking to the young man at the tables. Those are the only people you still don't know, so you move over and join the conversation.
Here are the results of your talk with them:
The fit man happens to be an exceptional gymnast from Africa (Olympic level), named !Peleh. He seems to be a very smart man, albiet his eyes keep wandering back towards the same spot - Giselle's left hand.
The younger guy, Kevin, is a seasoned playboy/pickup artist. The way he talks and walks and the subtle hints he keeps dropping towards the wife in the couple makes it clear to you.
The husband, Luke, isn't very bright. It's clear to the outsiders that Kevin is hitting on his wife, Leia, but he doesn't seem to notice at all. Leia is clearly miffed that Luke isn't noticing, and probably hasn't noticed all night.
As the night comes to a close, you make a mental note of each person(s) room keys.
You: Deck 8, 830 Luke and Leia: Deck 7, 724 Kevin: Deck 7, 726 George, Giselle: Deck 7, 700 Max: Deck 7, 701 Carol: Deck 7, 702 Jack: Deck 10, 1016 Jerome: Deck 10, 1018 Julian: Deck 10, 1020 Double You: Deck 5, 536 Tee Eff: Deck 5, 534 !Peleh: Deck 8, 800 Dr. Brofonomo: Deck 5, 533 Chang: Deck 10, 1025
Headed off to your room, you decide to get a good nights sleep.
For the next 3 days of the trip, nothing really happens. In fact it's quite relaxing.
It's now the 4th day of the trip. You decide to head down and see what everyone is up to, but when you get to Deck 5, you hear yelling and arguing from the direction of the Casino. Soon, you realize that Tee Eff and Double You have been gambling with Dr. Brofonomo as well as Jack, Jerome, and Julian. The two cops are accusing Dr. Brofonomo of counting cards, but Dr. Brofonomo denies it.
"How else are you winning almost all the time?" demands Double You, "You MUST be cheating!"
"I insist," Dr. Brofonomo says, "that I am NOT cheating. Just because I can make use of probability more effectively than you two dimwits doesn't mean that I'm cheating."
The argument goes on, and you don't want to be a part of it, so you quickly leave the scene. Stepping outside, you see Kevin and Leia in the pool. They seem to be having a good time. You turn back, reluctant to disturb them. As you head up to Deck 7, you spot Chang relaxing with Giselle and Carol at the coffee bar. Engaging in a bit of idle chit chat, they tell you that George and Max are sleeping in today, and are still in their rooms. Giselle seems to be getting really close to Carol, but the two of them don't seem to mind sharing personal space. As you keep watch over the conversation, you notice that Carol also seems to display disgust towards Chang. Since it's starting to get a bit uncomfortable, you and Chang leave after a little bit, and the two of you decide to take a walk on deck seven.
As you pass by Max's room, you notice that Max's door is slightly ajar. The two of you look inside, and notice that he's passed out, dead drunk with his face in the toilet, and it reeks of vomit. Reluctant to stay, the two of you quickly leave the scene.
"It's getting a bit late now," said Chang. You look at your watch, and notice that it's already 7pm.
"Yea, I think I'm going to hit the hay for the night" you respond. "It was really nice talking with you!" With that, the two of you separate ways and you go back to sleep.
A shriek at 11am shocks everyone on the boat. It seems to have originated from deck 5, and you rush down to take a look. Upon entry of the scene, you notice that there are two dead bodies in the hallway - Double You and Tee Eff. Chang is crouched over, shivering in complete shock against the wall. As the other people start arriving, looks of fear and murmurs start going around. Deciding to take charge, you quickly examine the bodies and give an announcement.
"To the best of my knowledge, the two of them were killed together, by the same shots from their own guns - to which I can't seem to find. They're both gone... " Livor Mortis has not started to set in yet, but Rigor Mortis has completely set in. The bodies are disfigured from multiple plasma shots, and their hands are tied together by their own belts. There's are two shattered cups on the floor, and the liquid spilling out of it seems to be red wine, but you catch a hint of black market tranquilizer - a specific type you have dealt with before. To the best of your knowledge, you remember that the drug is most effective when delivered through ingestion, and it comes in a liquid form. It's strong, and takes effect in seconds. It's also ludicrously hard to get, unless you have connections, or you're rich. You quickly look at who has assembled in the hallway, and you notice that the math professor is missing. "Where's Dr.Brofonomo??" you ask. Nobody knows, so you quickly open his door to find him dead in his room as well - hole in the chest by a well placed plasma shot. As you examine the holey corpse, you notice that both Rigor Mortis and Livor Mortis have set in completely.
The people that are gathered are starting to feel more and more disturbed. Who could have committed these ghastly murders? "Is everyone here?" you ask.
From the middle of the crowd, Jack exclaims, "George and Max aren't here, and Luke is missing as well!"
Immediately, everyone rushes to deck 7, where George and Luke's rooms are.
Luke's room is closest, so you quickly try the door. It's locked, and you kick it down when Chang informs you that only the person with a key can unlock hallway door. You find that he's dead, but his body is still warm - he must have only died recently. Luke died of suffocation. You notice a bottle of sleeping pills on the nightstand, labeled for Leia.
The next room you rush into is Max's - the door is still in the slightly open, but it seems to have been moved a bit. You find Max dead in the bathroom, his belt around his hands, the remains of his head still in the toilet. Death by plasma shot to the back of the head, and by the looks of it, several shots. You find that Rigor Mortis has only started to set in for him, but no Livor Mortis.
Leaving the scene, fearing the worst, you head out of Max's room and head to Georges room, only to find that the door is locked.
"George has the only key!" exclaims Giselle.
Without a second thought, you kick down the door. You find him dead on the bed, a victim of plasma shots as well. His face is disfigured, the remains of a blindfold on the pillow, and you see excessive damage to his torso area, almost as if his murderer was committed with a lot of hate. You also find that his hands have been bound together with his belt. The room key is on the nightstand. A quick scan with your detective watch shows theat there are only one set of finger prints on the card - Georges. This only gets weirder by the minute. At the sight of her dead husband, Giselle breaks down and starts crying. You've never seen anyone as emotionally unstable, and Carol starts to comfort her, patting her back, reassuring her and whatnot. It seems that the situation has been handled here, until you realize that something is off about the room. It doesn't nearly feel as rich as it should, considering the monetary status of the family. You ask Giselle to take a look around, and she mentions that some of the jewelry that she had brought with her was missing.
"I had put out the jewelry on the cabinet and nightstand when I got here, but it was gone a couple days ago - I thought George packed them away, but now I can't find them anywhere!"
As you turn back to take a last look at George, you see that he's got a "rocket in his pocket".
As the situation settles down, you start questioning the events and the people around you.
You start with Giselle, since she's clearly unstable, and you thought it'd be a good idea to get it over with quickly. Boy was it ever a bad idea. She's so unstable that you can't even get a properly pronounced word out of her, so you move on to Carol.
"Where were you all night?"
"In my room, alone. You can check the playlist on my TV. It's been playing since last night and still haven't stopped yet."
You move onto Leia. "Where were you?"
"I was sleeping last night, and then this morning I was with Kevin since 8 o'clock - he treated me to breakfast, what a gentleman."
Kevin seemed slightly confused for a moment, but then he says, "Yea, we had breakfast together. When the scream happened, we both rushed over." He looks like he just woke up from a really nice long sleep.
"Can you tell me why you have a bottle of sleeping pills, Leia?"
"I don't sleep well on boats, so I had them prescribed to me on this trip."
You look at Jack, Jerome and Julian, and before you can say a word they say "It wasn't us, we were playing cards last night in our room, we just got up..." They 3 of them yawn in sequence, and you notice that they're unshaven and they have bed hair.
You turn to !Peleh, and ask where he had been. "Well, I was asleep alone in my room last night. I had an early start this morning, and Chang and I went for a morning run around the boat."
Chang nods, agreeing with him. Chang confirms that after he left you he went straight to his room to try and sleep, but he was kept up by the loud card players across the hall. He mentions that he had woken up early this morning in order to run with !Peleh, which tells you that !Peleh wasn't lying about the run.
You look around, and try to make some sense of the situation. 6 murders have been committed on this trip. It can't possibly get any worse. That is, until you find out that after scouring the entire ship you can't find the two missing plasma guns. You mutter to yourself, "They must've been thrown into the ocean... we're on a damn boat, after all, the perfect way to get rid of a weapon..."
The question: Can you figure out who committed the murders, how, and why?
Bonus: Who stole the jewelry, and how?
Note: Everything required to solve this completely is provided. Small hints may be provided after enough time has passed, or enough tries have been exhausted. My comments on your answers may be very brief, since saying too much may give away the story. First person to get the fully correct answer will get acceptance. Person to get the bonus correct will have a bounty awarded, if I get at least 10 up votes (so I can award 50 bounty).
Note 2: You need to explain the how behind each death, and the motive, or I won't tell you if your answer is correct. This is to prevent blind guesses.
EDIT FOR CLARITY: The hallway door locks are similar to hotel room locks - When it closes, it automatically locks.
George was killed near the same time as max; +/- 10 minutes.
There is more than one culprit.
The belt on the victims is a murder signature - but think about what it (the action of tying someone up) represents as well.
There is no justice relationship to the belt.