A two-part fanfiction of HeR Interactive’s adaption of the classic Nancy Drew book, The Secret of the Old Clock. Unlike prior ND fanfics I’ve written, this one features a crossover guest from my favorite telly show: Doctor Who!
Most of HeR’s games take place in the 21st century, but to celebrate the first Nancy Drew book to ever be released, they decide to go with a retro, classic Nancy story which took place in her native 1930s. How does one reconcile that with the fact that it’s suppose to be the same Nancy as always? Simple: it’s gotta be time travel.
(by Allison Rose)
River Heights, Present Day
“Oh, those were the good old days,” Emily Crandall said with a wan smile as she flipped through the pages of her favorite old photo album. “Life was so much simpler then. There were none of those weird, modern gadgets you young people find so much amusement from!”
Nancy chuckled. “I suppose you’re right. Is it true that people used party lines back when you were a child?”
The two sat on the front porch of the River Heights Nursing Home, talking about life in the past. Miss Crandall was well on in years, but she had plenty of stories to share about the “good old days.”
“Yes, I did,” Miss Crandall replied, her voice faltering slightly. “When … my mother died and I moved to the poorer side of town, we all shared the phone. You couldn’t really have a private conversation.”
“Miss Crandall!” Nancy exclaimed. “You never told me about that!” Her heart went out to the little old lady; Nancy had lost her mother when she was three years old, and was raised by her single dad and kindly housekeeper since.
“Well, it’s a chapter in my life I don’t often wish to think about,” said Miss Crandal softly. “You see, my mother and I ran this beautiful inn in Titusville — that’s only a few miles south of here. We had a wonderful neighbor, an old gentleman, although he wasn’t as old as I am now, named Josiah Crowley. When he died in the Spring of 1930, he was supposed to leave us a sum of money in his will, but….”
As Nancy drove home in her little blue convertible, she felt her mind drifting to old Miss Crandall’s story. How unfortunate that the poor woman had lost everything and had to sell the inn! And the rumor that Josiah Crowley’s will had been forged…. What a mystery!
If only, Nancy thought, I had been there. I would’ve helped search for the real will and saved Miss Crandall from becoming bankrupt!
The sharp toot of another driver’s horn brought Nancy out of her reverie. The car to her left was an unusual-looking DeLorean. You didn’t see too many of those nowadays…. Suppose it was somehow connected to that series of rare car thefts from last fall?
Nancy blinked a few times, hoping to clear her head. She had to stay focused on the road if she didn’t want to activate a Second Chance sequence!
But it was too late. Nancy’s car swerved off the road and smashed head-on into…
…A blue police box?
The last thing Nancy saw before her vision faded into blackness was what looked like a tall, gangly clown in a bow-tie.
“Why, hello there! You’re awake!” a hyperactive-sounding English-accented voice exclaimed as Nancy opened her eyes.
“W-where am I?” Nancy slurred groggily. Was she inside that little blue box? How could that possibly be?
That hyperactive-sounding English-accented voice appeared to be coming from a tall, gangly, hyperactive-looking English man with flip-floppy brown hair and a cool-looking bow tie. This was the man Nancy remembered seeing before her vision had faded into blackness!
“You’re in the TARDIS,” the man replied, as though he could read her thoughts. “I’m the Doctor, and this is my companion, Cece.” He gestured to a petite young woman with auburn hair that made Nancy’s titian look strawberry-blond by comparison.
“Welcome,” she said with a friendly smile. “What’s your name?” Her accent was American, and she didn’t seem the least bit hyperactive (not that hyperactivity and being British go hand-in-hand, of course).
“My name’s Nancy,” Nancy replied. “Nancy Drew.”
“NANCY DREW?!” Cece crowed excitedly. She grabbed the Doctor’s arm. “Doctor, NANCY DREW is aboard the TARDIS!”
The Doctor, if that was his name, shook himself out of her grip. “Shhhh,” he whispered. “Don’t say too much — you may alter the flow of time, or rewrite history!”
“What do you mean?” Nancy asked, perplexed.
“Well,” the Doctor began hesitantly. “We’re time and space travelers…”
“…From the future,” Cece added. “And I am, like, your number one fan in the future!”
“Oh?” said Nancy. “Am I going to be famous?”
Cece made a zipping motion across her lips with her hand, and then pantomimed throwing away a key.
Nancy frowned. She hated when people locked doors, even figuratively. She resolved to play detective with the auburn-haired girl later on.
“So,” she began, “you said you two are time travelers?”
“And space travelers,” the Doctor replied. “Yes. Why? Are you looking to go somewhere in time and/or space?”
Nancy nodded eagerly. There were so many places she wanted to visit: Arizona, Italy, Japan, Germany, Paris, New Zealand…. The list could go on and on! But then, she remembered sweet old Miss Crandall’s heart-wrenching story.
“Yes, I would, Doctor,” Nancy replied earnestly. “Can you take me to Titusville in the year 1930? There’s a matter I really must attend to there. And can you pick up my dad and my friends first…?”
To Be Continued in….
The Secret of the Old Clock!
River Heights, Present Day
Nancy Drew entered the River Heights Nursing Home’s tastefully-furnished front lobby. For a 21st century girl, she was dressed quite conservatively — perhaps even overdressed — in her old-fashioned blue dress, flowered scarf, and black hat. The taste of slightly-crushed cherry pie was still fresh in her mouth.
She ventured over to the front desk, where a middle-aged woman in a more modern but tasteful suit was typing away at a computer. Nancy hadn’t seen one of those for about a week! When she noticed Nancy, the woman smiled pleasantly.
“May I help you, dear?”
“Um, excuse me?” Nancy began. “Could you direct me to Miss Crandall’s room, please?”
The woman frowned for a moment. “I’m sorry, could you repeat that name?”
Nancy obliged. “It’s Miss Crandall.”
The woman behind the desk typed a few things into her computer before replying, “I’m sorry, dear. There’s no record of anybody here by that name.”
Nancy frowned, perplexed. “Oh. Well, I’m very sorry to have troubled you. Have a good day!”
Nancy left the facility feeling confused. Had her journey back in time interfered with history so drastically? She shivered; thinking about it only made Nancy feel worse.
Nancy started walking towards the Scoop, River Heights’ local ice cream parlor. Perhaps a nice, hot fudge sundae would cheer her up.
As she approached the cheery little place, out of the corner of her eye, she thought she saw a shiny black limousine following her. The back passenger window opened, and an elderly woman Nancy didn’t quite recognize stuck her head out.
“Nancy? Nancy Drew?”
Nancy sat across from the old lady at one of the Scoop’s outdoor tables. Her sundae sat untouched and melted in front of her as she listened to the lady’s story.
“Nancy, dear,” she was saying in a sweet voice, “It’s me, Emily Hudson. That’s been my name since I married Howard, G-d rest his soul. I think you know me better as Emily Crandall. We went to school together.”
“Really?” Nancy gasped. “Woah!”
“You’re looking good, I must say,” Mrs. Hudson said with a chuckle. “I haven’t seen you for decades and you haven’t aged a day!” Her face grew solemn as she continued speaking. “I just wanted to thank you for all of your help back when I was a young woman living in Titusville. I don’t even want to think about how I might’ve ended up if not for your intervention….”
Smiling broadly, Nancy held the older woman’s hand gently. “The pleasure is all mine, Mrs. Hudson.”
Standing on the other side of the street, Nancy saw a tall, gangly, hyperactive-looking English man with flip-floppy brown hair and a cool-looking bow tie. The man winked conspiratorially at her before vanishing inside a funny blue box….