...The feeling isn't letting up. I have to know.
I knock on the door to gamps' study. One knock. Two. Nothing. I realize the door itself is actually ajar. In his reliance on the auto-lock, he must've simply thought he'd closed it...
I step inside.
"Hello...?" I ask. No response.
Without much hesitation, I begin searching through the papers on his desk. If there's any indication - any truth in what I heard - it has to be here...!
I find a strange piece of paper in one of the drawers. It looks to be a note of some kind. A fairly old one.
I've finally found it. 'The Emerald Pearl'. Never in my wildest dreams could I have a imagined such a treasure. I will make the preparations to ensure it never falls into the wrong hands. However, should you be reading this and you are not me -- then the chances are high that I am dead. If you ARE indeed reading this through perfectly legitimate means, then know that you have been blessed, for I have chosen you to know about this island's greatest secret.
To get to the Pearl, you need to step out into the hallway of the top floor. You would think that the only door there was the door to my room. Well, you would certainly be wrong. After all -- the wall at the end of it can actually be moved. Inside is a small room. Useful for hiding, but that's beside the point. Inside the room is actually a secret switch, revealing the great secret. The one the Baron hid in this very mansion.
Upon pressing it, my study - and all the things in it, along with the ceiling, the floor, and some of the walls, will shift to the side. The door and the windows will remain untouched. And in the place of my study, a new room will emerge. You will notice, dear reader, that it is, in fact, identical to the study you've grown accustomed to before. That's just a trick, you see. A ploy. The Baron had originally constructed these rooms for two purposes - one was for hiding. He had a lot of enemies. Should he have ever found himself in an ambush - he could've simply pressed a switch in the study (yes, there's one in there too), let the rooms shift, and make his enemies believe they've walked into his usual study -- and find nobody there. Because there would be no other entrances or exists and no possible ways to get to it -- the baron would've been safe and undetected. I decided to follow his plan. In fact, it's extremely good that I did.
Because one of the two studies hides the secret of the Emerald Pearl.
The Baron, being a rich and illustrous man, had designed a secret infrastructure below the island. One that would, upon the activation -- cause the island to lift off the ground and fly! No, I am not mad! The controls (or, rather, the single button that turns it on) exist! They're hidden under the desk in the secret study! I've seen the structure myself! It's magnificent! It's beautiful! It's an amazing achievement! Glorious! Simply beautiful!
It's designed to lift up the island cause it to make a rather large trip in the sky. In his journals, he claimed it was a present for his wife. To give her the sky itself. Upon completion, it was automated to simply return to its original position. Unfortun--
I stop reading.
What... the hell... is this...?
Without thinking, I immediately go and activate the switch to change the studies. And just as the letter says, through the open door, I begin to see the walls shift. Another study emerges, as if it'd been there all along. I check the desk. There are commands, just as the note said. Well, just one. A button.
One activating the Emerald Pearl.
Out of curiosity, I press it.
The ground shakes just as a loud flash of thunder roars through the sky. I can't feel anything much afterwards. Is the island... starting to float? Is it activating? I'm not sure...
"Nosing around my office, eh?"
He's standing at the door, looking right at me. He chuckles. "Well. Guess it had to come out eventually. Congratulations, my dear Jessica. You've found the Emerald Pearl. This island's greatest secret."
I didn't feel much cause for celebrations.
"N-Never mind this! Is it true...?! Is... is Dad really not the family head?!" I demand to know.
"...Ah." He sighs. "I'm afraid so. A small error on my part that Erika has come to fix. Nothing to worry about."
"Actually - there is! Because your other children know too, goddammit! They're going to bring their lawyers and tear him apart!"
"...Oh. That's unfortunate." He says, sitting in his chair.
"That's... that's it...? That's all you have to fucking say?!" In my anger, I tear apart the note regarding the Emerald Pearl's true nature. "I don't give a damn about the Pearl, you hear?! This is more important! THIS is about my dad! THIS is your fault!"
"Indeed. And I've tried to fix it. Unfortunately, it would appear my efforts have been in vain. My apologies. It would appear that, just like Achilles, he can always travel half the distance needed, but never reach his goal."
That's all you can say?!
Ruining my father's life and legacy and all his hard work because 'oops butterfingers' and THAT IS ALL YOU CAN BRING YOURSELF TO GODDAMN SAY YOU SON OF A BITCH?!
I... I lose it.
I grab a knife on his table. He reacts quickly, jumping out of his chair. He's ex-military, after all...
"You don't want to do this. Not again, Jessica." He says calmly.
"You... this is all your damn fault... You just... always keep... runing my family... That damn poem... that damn doctor... giving my dad a chance of happiness and then taking it away, burying him... I won't let you! I won't let you, you hear me you bastard?!"
I lunge at him.
But in the end, he really is just an old man.
I stab him. And he falls to the floor. I'm on top of him. My hand is still firmly grasping the handle. I can't stop shaking.
What... have I done...?
"Jessica... What's... going on...?"
I turn my head.
...And find my father standing at the doorway.