WGOM CW Survivor Archives – Challenge 13 – Tour Guide

Write a travel brochure for 5 lame attractions (4 chosen from a list provided by judges, one of your own):

This tour serves as a re-telling of a tragedy that claimed the life of Haley, a young girl who grew up right here in West Blocton.

A skillfully designed all-day tour with five stops, this excursion packs an emotional wallop tourists won’t soon forget.

This tour is about remembrance, not profit, so all proceeds go to the Haley Fund to help troubled teens.

William Firestone is my name, I have lived in West Blocton all my life and so have firsthand knowledge of Haley’s story.

Haley spent a large portion of her days at the local hardware store.

She was there to see Sam, who worked there all through high school.

He deeply loved her, and had since forever, and she loved him just as much.

Distressed by the fast-growing romance, Haley’s father, who was never one for subtlety, moved her to the abandoned water tower nearby in Marvel.

Sealing her in the tower, he wouldn’t allow Haley to see Sam again.

To mount the stairs of this tower is to see how he controlled her life.

He inspected all her letters to ensure she wouldn’t communicate with Sam.

Now Haley and Sam had to implement a plan to circumvent her father’s totalitarian tendencies.

A mailed letter would come to Billy, another kid the same age as Haley.

Content its contents were benign, Haley’s father allowed this correspondence, unaware that if he were to read only the third letter of each sentence he would find secret messages intended for Sam.

As the go-between, Billy would deliver the letters to Sam at the the local café, where the checkers enthusiasts still jump their pieces over the notes written on the tables as Sam decoded her declarations of love.

To ease the reading of these hidden messages, Haley wrote each sentence as its own paragraph.

In deference to her style, Billy would do the same as he encoded Sam’s responses into his innocuous notes.

No huge surprise that as Billy wrote all of those letters, encoding messages became second nature and hidden sentences started creeping into everything he wrote.

Unable to be away from her love any longer, Haley planned to escape her father’s prison.

A fluttering heart threatened to jump out of his chest as he decoded Haley’s latest letter, realizing this was his chance to finally be with the girl he loved.

The fourth stop on the tour is the place designated for the reunion of Sam and Haley, an enormous empty warehouse just outside of town.

Crying with anticipation, Haley arrived at the warehouse, but Sam was nowhere to be found.

In truth, no one would see Sam again.

Stories persist to this day about what happened to Sam, but no trace of him or his body have ever been found.

Sobbing after not finding Sam at home, she made her way to Billy’s house, to make sure her message had been received.

The fifth and final stop on our tour is Billy’s house, where Haley received the terrible news about Sam.

Sam received the message, but apparently told Billy that he didn’t want to meet Haley, and that he was running away to avoid her.

Thinking her family had taken Sam away, and that now she would never see him again, Haley could find nothing to live for as she killed herself in Billy’s bathroom.

Many people will dismiss this tour as macabre, but I want everyone to understand that this is a testament to love and the stupid things it makes us do.

To ease my personal guilt, I have tried to create a cautionary experience that will remind everyone to appreciate the love in their own lives.

Stop 1 – Hardware Hank
Stop 2 – Marvel Water Tower (http://www.panoramio.com/photo/1015870)
Stop 3 – Morning checkers game at the local café
Stop 4 – World’s largest empty warehouse
Stop 5 – Childhood home of the tour guide

SPOOKY: Over at the World’s Greatest today I mentioned that one reason I ran this one was to see the wildly different ways in which it would be attacked. I didn’t expect anything about this one. In truth, I figured this was structured in such a way that any attack besides comedy wouldn’t work. I love this entry, and I love how much it proved me wrong.

5 points out of 5

BEAU: I love that water tower. It’s appearance matches up well with this disturbing exposé. Masterfully done.

5 points out of 5


I have never been more nervous about a submission that I was about this one.  I agreed with Spooky that this challenge seemed structured in a way that comedy appears to be the only attack, I was terrified I was going to get comments about this not being funny at all (which it isn’t) or not getting it.  I guess I needn’t have worried.  This was well received all around, there were multiple compliments from other players and everything.  Obviously, I’m very happy with the way it turned out.

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