Initiation

Physical Items

Episode 1

 Letter from Felix

Ex litteris means "after receiving the".

Felix has personally assigned our Friend this time, Mr. Flowers. 

Instead of just communicating with a lonely soul, we are outright expected to detect what our Friend has done. 

Felix suggests looking into the archives located on the LFoA website

We have a deadline of 6 months to figure out what Mr. Flowers has done to harm LFoA. 

Letter from Friend 

Jasper seems to be missing some keys from his typewriter. I am sure he can figure out how to fix that. 

~Meghan Gibson 

2 keys on the typewriter are apparently broken: J and Z. 

In this letter, Jasper reveals that he was abandoned at the age of 3 and entered into the foster system. 

Jasper reveals how he met Sylvia, his other pen pal, and was introduced to horology.

  •  Horology is the study and measurement of time; the art of making clocks and watches.
  • Did Jasper make the accompanying pocket watch? 

Jasper claims learning horology was the "final piece of [his] puzzle"... 

  • Is he referring to himself as a puzzle, some pieces being the knowledge he gained from Manny, the final being what he learned from Sylvia? 
  • What do the "pieces" add up to?

According to this letter, Jasper uses Sylvia as his eyes and ears to the outside world and wishes us to become acquainted with her as well. Not unlike with us, Jasper and Sylvia's communication is one-sided. He is unable to write to her.

  • Why is this? 

Why does Jasper feel he can share things with us yet not with Sylvia if he was allowed to write to her? 

The times at the bottom of this letter are a clock cipher. 

Starting with A, each letter of the alphabet with the exception of J and Z is a quarter of an hour, starting with 12:00. 

  • So, A = 12:00, B = 12:15, etc. 

Decoded, the message reads: 

  • "I TOOK MANNY APART LIKE HUMPTY DUMPTY, BUT NEXT TIME I WILL FIND A WAY TO BEST THE KING'S MEN." 

Why on earth did he kill his mentor? Note that he calls it "retirement" earlier in his letter. 

Is this what he feels he can't tell Sylvia? 

How many more people was he able to kill before finally being caught? 

Was he caught for this killing since he said next time he'd best the king's men? The king's men couldn't put Humpty Dumpty back together again, but the cops must have been able to put Manny back together. 

 Letter from Sylvia

I do not see anything wrong with this letter. It passed the incoming articles inspection. It is interesting that Jasper gets to have letters come from outside of the Listening program, but I guess it makes sense because he has always been on his best behavior. And Sylvia seems great! I love the border on her stationary, such detail! 

~Meghan Gibson 

There are letter/number combinations hidden within the border. 

The postscript of this letter is the key to cracking the code hidden within the border. 

  • G's start at A and shift the appropriate number forward. S's start at Z and shift the appropriate number back. 
  • The code begins with G8, the 12:00 position of the letter. 

Decoded, the message reads: 

  • "HANG IN THERE JUST A LITTLE LONGER." 

Does Sylvia plan to somehow break Jasper out of the institution? 

Listening Friends of America Letter 

My brief introduction, a welcome and other pleasantries. There is not much else to talk about with this item. 

~Meghan Gibson 

Meg Gibson is our inspector and apparently the person who now writes our LFoA letters. 

In this letter, Meg provides instructions on how to access her inspector notes of our Friend's package contents. 

Meg introduces herself and gives a little background. 

She states she likes to hike up to "M". 

  • What is "M"? Could it be Madison Range? 

A "summit" is a point on a surface that is higher in elevation than all points immediately adjacent to it. The highest peak in the Madison Range is also the highest peak in Montana outside the Beartooth Range. 

In Meg's inspector notes, she seems to have a very different take on Jasper Flowers than what Felix expresses in his letter. 

Newspaper Clipping 

This article is about a body found in a museum, dismembered and "taken apart" in the same manner as Jasper's other victim.  

Patient File 

Resident Intake: First Impressions 

The patient file reveals that Jasper has difficulty displaying empathy. 

Jasper also seems to suffer from having "out of body" experiences. 

Jasper is checked as having a "bizarre" behavior. 

  • He speaks using more words than are necessary to convey an idea or thought. 

Jasper is noted as having poor judgment. 

According to the "Capacity" section of the "Identification Information" section, Jasper has someone on the outside who can make personal care and financial decisions for him. 

  • Is this person Sylvia? 

According to the "Reasons for Admission" section of the "Intake and Initial History" section, Jasper was deemed as a threat or danger to others. 

Jasper was admitted to the Bozeman facility on 2/15/2004. 

Jasper pleaded insanity at trial. He was found guilty. 

  • What crime did he commit? 
  • He seems to be sound of mind, despite pleading insanity. 

First LFoA Memo → Clark Love to Warren Jones 

It was discovered by a staff member that Jasper is quite the handyman, thanks to Manny's mechanical training in his teens. 

Jasper was thought to be put to work fixing things due to his determination to complete what he starts. 

Second LFoA Memo → Dr. Willa Cortes to Warren Jones 

The lyrics Jasper was witnessed singing, "You went away and left me 'cause you thought you could hurt me but I got news for you", is from the song "Everything's the Same (ain't Nothing Changed)" by Billy Swan. 

  • Could this song have to do with his parents abandoning him? Saying it had no effect on his lifestyle? 

Pocket Watch 

This is another reason why Jasper is such a good friend. He is so generous, to give someone he barely knows a watch from his personal collection. He projects so much meaning onto each of his things, especially his timepieces. 

~Meghan Gibson 

This is a gift from Jasper. 

  • Did he make it himself? 

Thaumatrope

I had to research what this was. They used to be very popular with kids in the 19th century. Typically you would see a bird on one side and a cage on the other. Spinning them together put the bird in the cage. I like the one Jasper made better, because I prefer watching birds outdoors, out of cages. 

~Meghan Gibson 

According to Jasper's accompanying letter, he gave us the thaumatrope as an idea that a person's situational outlook all depends on one's perspective. 

  • Even though we and Jasper are in different locations, we are as one in this circumstance. 

The word "TEETH" is printed on the circles. 

  • "TEETH" is the title of one of the sections on the hidden LFoA website page that Felix gave us access to. However, it is password protected. 

Vault Print

I love Thomas Eakins, and this is a great example of his work. Such a small reproduction of the original makes it seem so different. 

~Meghan Gibson 

This print is "Pole Vault" by Thomas Eakins. 

The original print does not have the word "Vault" on it.