Ben Jordan Case 3 - The Sorceress of Smailholm

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Ben Jordan Case 3: The Sorceress of Smailholm is the third case in the Ben Jordan series of adventure games.


Plot Synopsis

The game opens with a shot of a full moon. The camera then pans down to a forest clearing, where three figures in black robes are standing over a cauldron. The three discuss an upcoming ceremony, and how an outsider will be coming to the village. The cauldron shows them that this outsider is none other than Ben Jordan.

Meanwhile, back in Philadelphia, Ben receives a phone call from a couple in Smailholm, Scotland whose daughters have been murdered. They suspect it to be the work of witches, so Ben journeys to Smailholm to investigate. Over the next few days, Ben finds love, betrayal, and the beginning of his self-doubt when it comes to the simplicity of being a paranormal investigator.

Characters

Spoiler warning:
You may not want to read on if you have not completed the games!

Wilma Wiggins

An old recluse living in a stone cottage with a thatched roof, Wilma is believed to be a suspect in the murder of the McBee children. However, she proves to be a great help to Ben, offering him assistance in learning about the fate of the children using her Wiccan nature magic. Unfortunately, she is murdered by the Dark Witch Cult before she can reveal anything.

Adam and Ellen McBee

The parents of the murdered children. In reality, they have no children and are merely playing a role in order to lure Ben to Smailholm in preparation for his sacrifice. They appear to be the most loyal to Zortherus.

Marcus Tibbins

Innkeeper of the Hotel Smailholm. He seems friendly enough, but in reality is also a part of the Dark Witch Cult of Smailholm.

Wallace Crim

A timid, nervous man. He is part of the Dark Witch Cult as well, but is probably low-ranking member, based on his demeanor.

Constable Angus McGee

Smailholm's local enforcer of the law. Like most of the residents of the village, he is a member of the Dark Witch Cult. He is the first cult member to confront Ben, after being seen talking to a cloaked figure in the woods.

Zortherus

The leader of the Dark Witch Cult in Smailholm. Zortherus is a strigoi, a type of vampire-witch originating from Romania. According to the chapter on witches in The Paranormal Investigator's Handbook, Zortherus has been around since at least colonial times, when he was the head of a similar cult in 1800s Pennsylvania.

He fabricated the story of the murdered girls and had the fellow cult members play along in order to lure Ben to Smailholm to be a sacrifice for the witch holiday of Lammas. However, Ben managed to escape and kill Zortherus.

Unanswered Questions

Spoiler warning:
You may not want to read on if you have not completed the games!

R.I.P. Alice Wilkins

In Smailholm Cemetery, one of the graves belong to 'Alice Wilkins, Smailholm's Oldest Living Resident.' She lived from 1787 to 1902, making her 115 years old at the time of her death. In Case 4, Ben meets a young woman from California named Alice Wilkins. Is there a connection? Or is it just a coincidence?

Francisco Gonzalez has stated that he used the same name twice before realizing it, so the name on the grave isn't the same Alice that Ben meets later on. In fact, Gonzalez fixes this in case 7 by having Alice tell Ben that the grave he saw was that of her great great great grandmother.

The Sacrifice

It is revealed that the whole story of the child murders was simply a hoax designed to lure Ben to Smailholm to be the sacrifice for the witch cult. However, it is never explicitly stated why it is Ben in particular who is so important to Zortherus.

He got in their way and Inspector Jones had some sway over them.