Until We Sink in Emeralds

We played Until We Sink by Magnus Jakobsson and discovered a family-run hotel on an island in the warm waters of the Pacific.

Photo courtesy David Stanley at Flickr. (CC by 2.0)

Just before we arrived, a fisherman was found dead on the beach next to a cliff. Marge, the hotel’s caretaker, wanted to hide this from the hotel guests. But her teenage son, Philip Bartholomew, wanted to explore and poke the body. The two hotel guests were Ethel, a gossiping retiree who kept talking about her love conquests back in LA, and Quentin, a charming, wannabe sun worshiper who wanted to teach Philip his ways.

We came to learn that the fisherman who was found dead was Frankfurton, Ethel’s boyfriend whom she was expecting to meet on the island later in the week. Eventually a proper burial was prepared for Frank’s body. Unfortunately, his headstone was vandalized the next day with the word “swine” written in black ink. There was a lot of confusion regarding who may have done it, since Philip’s calligraphy classes and Ethel’s peculiar makeup routine left both with ink-stained hands.

The next day, while serving breakfast, a seagull ate Ethel’s breakfast as soon as it was served, and dropped dead in the sand. After investigating, it became clear that it was poisoned. Someone had laced the maple butter used on the bacon to try to kill Ethel! It was obvious the poisoned bacon could not have been meant for Quentin as he was a vegetarian. While arguing with one another, Ethel figured out that she and Quentin were actually being targeted for murder by Jack, the travelling pastor who frequented the island and gave services via radio.

The next day, the island finally sank, and both guests and the hotel family found themselves on a boat. There we learned that Jack was killing people to prevent them from mining emeralds from the island’s cliffs, as there was a legend saying the island would sink if these emeralds ever left the island… and it was there we also learned that Quentin had filled his coat with the emeralds!