Umineko Twilight 49 – Intellectual Masturbation (Adventures of the Cynical Detective)

A full game of chess explained. A full mystery narrated and solved.

I remembered the good times, I remembered the mystery, I remember locked rooms, I remember duct tapes. I remember glorious EP5 and its mystery-centric doses. Whatever happened to that? Right after EP5 I’ve been thinking how much I wanted the guy to write a straight-up mystery for his next work. It’s not everyday that an author provides an actual mystery in order for the readers to crack in order to move forward. There is something truly lost in the process of the art of theorizing in these mysteries when most of the time one only gives a shorter version of the reasoning done. Explaining your whole train of thought in the most detailed manner possible is a challenge. Why did that person say that? What are his reasoning? Umineko Twilight has no questions and has no mystery solving scenarios like the question arcs do but all the same provide one final solvable for the readers to solve. Step by step guide to what goes on.

For everyone else not familiar with it I had been running an ambitious series of solving actual mysteries by real mystery authors at Tea Party. It was mad fun going against classic Mystery Authors so I decided to do something similar with this section. Explain the whole reasoning, propose x scenarios, play with possibilities, and finally solve the mystery.

Case in point, I might be late to the party like Bernkastel was but I’m still going to solve this mystery. Case in point I was more than OK with R07 experimenting in his latest game. Put the fantasy aside for a moment and focus on the characters in a real world setting. Sure, I love time-loops more than the average person does. The thing is that I wanted to see a more regular mystery and see how it would turn out. There’d no resets no retrying everyone’s got one chance. Ryukishi granted one of the wishes in Umineko Twilight. Get those stakes out. Get the blue sword. It’s intellectual raping time.

*Warning* Magically heavy hardcore theatergoing Reading.

Just like that we’re in a real mystery. One, two, three, four, five victims are down. Talk about unfortunate for Seakitties actors for they have to leave the stage so early.

Gohda: “The dining hall was locked up.”
Kumasawa: “That’s when I arrived.”
Gohda: “I unlocked the door with a master key”
Kumasawa: “Eva-sama, Hideyoshi, Rudolf, Kyrie, Rosa, and Genji, six people in all were lying there, covered in blood…”
Krauss: “Everyone gathered in the dining hall.”
Shannon: “The death of each parent was confirmed by their own child..”
Kanon: “Doctor Nanjo and I confirmed that Genji-sama was dead.”
Nanjo: “No one will mistakenly confirm a death, even those other than myself.”
Maria: “Looks like all of the victims died instantly.”
Krauss: “After inspecting the interior of the dining hall, we determined that all of the doors and windows had been locked, making it a closed room.”
Battler: “And nothing suspicious was found inside the dining hall.
George: “Of course, there was no one hiding in the dining hall either.
Krauss: “Naturally. All of us are here right now. It’s clear that no one is hiding.

“All doors can only be locked or unlocked with a master key.”
“Of course, it is possible to lock or unlock the doors from inside the room even without a master key.”
“In this game, we’ll consider master keys to be the only keys that exist.”
“There are five master keys total. One is held by each of the five servants.”
“The servants keep the master keys on their person at all times, so it is impossible for them to be stolen, handed over, or used by any human other than themselves.”

There’s a lot of information to take in. Let’s pretend for a moment that all they’re saying is true and see how many inconsistencies we can find by assuming so. Gohda’s statement is one of the most critical ones since if he’s lying it means that the room was never locked and this was never a locked room. So how do we proceed if that’s true?

His statement says that the room was locked but it is closely related to what Kumasawa says next since she arrived after him. We’ll equally assume that there’s no small, *little* room for error in this matter. Kumasawa arrived exactly as Gohda did making it impossible for him to lock up the room before anyone approached it. Assuming that to be true and also Kumasawa’s statement to be true then Gohda’s statement is also true, otherwise Gohda would be a culprit for lying and so Kumasawa too would lying.

What this means is that both Kumasawa and Gohda’s statement are connected. What this means is that the dining hall was indeed locked up when both of them arrived otherwise it’d mean that they’re both culprits (one for lying and the other for not correcting the lie spoken).

That is one of the foundations of this mystery, and such stories, the very first crime. When we assume the very first locked room was never a locked room everything falls to pieces. The first locked room was locked all right. This reasoning makes sense and so for the moment we’re assuming that there was no foul play and the dining hall was locked up and the door only opened when the rest came in.

Now there’s no official [time of death] or anything like that so we don’t know the time of the crimes. As mentioned before there’s no reason to question Kumasawa’s statement that they were a total six bodies and were all covered in blood for it is fact that anyone can confirm it. In this case because everyone can confirm it is a solid fact.

The same concept applies to Krauss’ statement that “Everyone gathered in the dining hall” for anyone can confirm this and knowing our characters are accounted for is redundant. They’re all there meaning that the culprit is either faking his/her death or just came in with everybody else. That’s all easy for any Umineko reader. The following is the interesting part.

Shannon says that, “the death of each parent was confirmed by their own child”. This could go two ways, either Shannon is lying or she isn’t. If she’s lying than it means that no parent’s death was confirmed by their child, which makes no sense assuming they all did. If she’s telling the truth (like she is) then it means that Eva, Hideyoshi, Rudolf, Kyrie and Rosa are surely dead. But hold up a minute.. what Shannon says doesn’t “strictly” mean much culprit-wise. What she’s saying is two things that don’t make her the culprit bur are open to interpretation. How can she be the culprit if she’s only saying things which supposedly do happen? The sons and daughters do examine the bodies. This much is true. They confirmed their deaths. This isn’t necessarily true. Shannon only says what she thinks it did happen which is an important part in this mystery.

1) She can be a ‘culprit’ if she’s lying about something she knows it to be false.
2) She CAN be ‘wrong’ yet not be a culprit because she’s telling the true about something she really believes to be true. See the difference?

I’ve never been one to buy the furniture statements so they all come with more than your average drop of healthy skepticism. Kanon’s statement mentions that “Doctor Nanjo and I confirmed that Genji-sama was dead.” This is one of the fishiest teams possible the furniture and a shady doctor examining and confirming deaths doesn’t exactly spell solid truth. We can believe or not they’re telling the true as right now we’re in the initial process after all. Because they’re in teams what Kanon says ought to be true as well for what Nanjo is saying.

Note that this is the only *team* which did not included any children confirming their own parents’ deaths.

*Something that’s been bothering me. The possibility or rule that all the suspects are saying should be corrected or confirmed by everyone in the room. By that we mean that when a person says something that is false and the other character knows it’s false he should speak out otherwise he’d also be aiding the culprit, thus being a culprit themselves. Why? Because someone who isn’t a culprit should correct a false statement he or she believes to be false because he either believes it is a mistake or because there’s something suspicious about said statements.

Thus assuming Kanon is lying then Nanjo is also a culprit for aiding him and for that matter Genji would also be a culprit because he isn’t dead. Why? Simple, why would they lie about him being dead if he isn’t dead? Assuming Kanon is telling the truth then Nanjo also is, thus Genji is indeed dead thus naturally not a culprit. A culprit is defined as someone who lies and kills. An accomplice would be a culprit. A culprit is someone who aids another culprit. Lying is a form of aiding the culprit. These two are not culprits.

“No one will mistakenly confirm a death, even those other than myself.” This is the same as Shannon’s previous statement. Nanjo could be lying about this or not, yet not be a culprit himself because he has no control over what the others are doing and how correctly they’re doing it. The key word in Nanjo’s statement is “mistakenly” because it implies that the person confirming the deaths will do it correctly and without fail. It’s tricky wording because it isn’t a restrictive as it sounds. It does not mean that it’s impossible to mistakenly confirm a death, which would mean that the victims are surely dead. What it can mean is that they can mess up but with intentionally, fully knowing they’re doing it wrong. Why? Because they’re the culprit.

Krauss’s statement sounds truthful enough. After all the windows do tend to locked for real in these mysteries while the doors are the key to solving them. I still find the statement of the doors being locked to be true after considering Gohda’s (and Kumasawa’s) statement. Therefore, I think his statement is truth. We’ll assume that Maria right about the victims dying instantly as everyone can confirm this too.

Battler’s statement that “nothing suspicious was found inside the dining hall” is too vague. Nothing at all? It could mean that there was nothing inside the dining hall but it could ALSO mean that ‘no one found anything suspicious inside of it, see? I still figured that it was far too vague but similarly I also figured that there probably wasn’t anything suspicious found. This could probably work better if it was a room with multiple doors.

George’s statement that “Of course, there was no one hiding in the dining hall either” could also be open for discussion, however, this is a dining hall NOT a room and despite being bigger there isn’t enough room to hide. Krauss’s final statement sums it up nicely, “naturally. All of us are here right now. It’s clear that no one is hiding.” There’s not much room for questioning from my end. It’s completely true that everyone is present and it is more than reasonable to assume that no one is hiding. Thus, Krauss’s statement is true.

There we have it, the very first twilight. It’s to be expected that there should still be some Q & A from those solving the mystery, Battler and Beatrice as I was doing my own thinking. Out with it, Bernkastel. I’m sure we all want to know – I thought.

 “All doors can only be locked or unlocked with a master key.” The second is that “Of course, it is impossible to lock or unlock the doors from inside the room even without a master key.”

That really simplifies things because there’s no need to think of tricks messing with the doors, knobs, or whatever other contrite tricks they can possibly do to doors. We can now start thinking that only keys are used to lock and unlock doors. That aside it’s logical to start pondering about whatever happened to the other regular keys and what type of role they play. Bern really liked to simplify things in this round by saying that “in this game, we’ll consider master keys to be the only keys that exist”. And so we no longer have to worry about other type of keys being stolen, misplaced or “handed” to other character. The next detail to think about is how many keys are in total.

“There are 5 master keys total. One is held by each of the five servants.”

Sure, Bern but what if they’re killed and their keys are stolen and whatnot? Then we’re back to the same thing unless..

“The servants keep the master keys on their person at all times, so it is impossible for them to be stolen, handed over, or used by any human other than themselves.”

Thank you. That just about does it by greatly simplifying things. Because the servants’ keys are destroyed the moment they die and because they cannot be stolen or used by anyone other than themselves it becomes truly impossible for the master keys to be used for any sort of trickery. Natsuhi wraps it nicely with a red truth preventing the further use of keys : Natsuhi: “to prevent trouble later on, we destroyed Genji’s master key.”

It could not possibly gotten more straightforward than this when basically we’re no longer in an Umineko type of mystery. We’re solving a truly solvable mystery from the very start. Let’s review the reasoning thus far.

  • We theorize it was impossible for anyone to have unlocked the room before Gohda and Kumasawa arrived at the crime scene.
  • The victims who were murdered died instantly. Weapon or cause of death is unknown. This doesn’t play an important part according to the mystery it seems.
  • It’s possible for the victims to have only been killed before the door was locked. To have been killed after it was unlocked would mean that they were killed by first people who arrived at the scene of the crime. This simply cannot be.
  • Assuming the door was never unlocked prior to the crime scene being discovered it means the victims were killed before anyone arrived at the scene.
  • By logic if the six are truly dead they won’t be able to leave the room unless they’re moved by any of the survivors. Moreover, there’s no reason for them to unless by the culprit. By logic based on the deaths alone it show the victims were discussing the inheritance behind Krauss and Natsuhi’s back. Thus indicating the one(s) who were called to the meeting were equally grownups or servants to be in the room. The following scenarios are possible. A) The culprit either entered the room and killed everyone fully knowing they were all in there. B) The culprit was one of the people in the room. It has already been planned before they went in. Note. However, I won’t be using this as actual evidence other than to provide a setting behind the crimes.
  • Based on the statements it is evident that characters could provide false statement without being aware of it if they are tricked. The reason behind it is that they have no control over other people’s actions – they’re only stating statements they think are true. For example, A says B-D found nothing. What A says is true. It doesn’t mean they all didn’t find anything. It means B and C *said* to A that they didn’t find anything. A believed them thus A is innocent. In the case should any of them lie B or C would be the culprit.
  • By logic we assume no one is hiding inside the dining room as it would be impossible in such open space, therefore the culprit can only be playing dead or have previously left the room, which would mean one of the survivors is the culprit. It is consequently doubtful all victims are dead.
  • Going by the statement all victims are dead and going by the statement ‘nothing suspicious’ was found and ‘no one is hiding” – assuming them to be true- then it means the culprit must previously definitely left the room before it was locked.

> Because the room can only be locked with a master key it means a servant had to lock it. There is no room for error in this as only the servants carry master keys and they disappear when they die. There are two theories and these are the following:

[ A culprit is one of the servants.] Proof of it is that the door was locked in the first twilight. First theory – a servant is not the culprit, however, it remains a fact a servant locked the room. What it is relevant is the fact that a servant locked the door but was unaware a crime had occurred. It happened like this: a servant approached the door of the dining hall and locked it using his/her only master key after his or her usual round. The servant didn’t speak out because the servant thought he’d be put under suspicious. Second Theory – A servant is the culprit as he had to locked the door after the culprit left the room. All locked rooms can be solved like this.

But wait a minute! Something in that reasoning is terribly wrong. That’s right. We’re forgetting the RULES. They’re supposed to be there to help us solve this mystery.

All of this theoretical reasoning based on alternative scenarios quickly fall apart by rule that only servants carry and can use master keys. It is only possible to lock and unlock doors with a master key from the outside. Nevertheless, it is also possible to lock the doors from the inside without using master keys. Having the servants as culprits is a rash reasoning simply based on the fact they carry master keys, therefore they must be culprits.

When we assume servants aren’t culprit it leads us to only one possibility, that, it is only possible for culprits who are not servants to be able to lock the doors only from the inside.

Gohda: “Madam’s room was locked!”
Shannon: “After getting everyone’s permission, I unlocked the door..
Kanon: “Krauss-sama and Natsuhi-sama lay sprawled on the floor inside the room.”
Battler: “Doctor Nanjo checked their pulse. Then, he announced that the two of them had died instantly.”
Nanjo: “Correct. I confirmed both of their deaths. there can be no doubt that they died instantly.
Jessica: “I searched all over the room looking for a clue..! In the end, I found that the windows and doors were all locked, making it a closed room.
Shannon: “All of us servants were together the whole time.”
Kanon: “All of us servants can prove an alibi for all of the other servants.”

They were going for the rest of the siblings next. Who didn’t see it coming? Gohda is (again) the first at the scene and equally once again reassuring the door was locked when he arrived. My eyes are on the furniture and Shannon’s statement such as “After getting everyone’s permission, I unlocked the door..” sounds truthful until the “unlocked” part because it can equally mean that she could’ve faked unlocking a door, meaning that the door was never locked. Would such lie be possible, why?

Assuming Gohda had lied then Shannon only opened a door that was already unlocked then it means this was never a locked room. The conclusion is that for Shannon to be a culprit Gohda would have to be lying about the door being locked when he arrived. They are not lying about the door.

> Assuming that neither of them lied then it means this is a locked room. To have one lie of the two in this case means that the other one is lying as their actions and statements are close to together. It is therefore possible that : If the door is not locked then Shannon + Gohda = culprits. If the door is locked = neither of them are lying. Simple as that. We only need one to get the other.

There’s not much solid reason to question statements that aren’t open to interpretation and we’ll see why. Statements that state facts such of events that happened which can be verified by everyone can be taken as facts without some sort of tricky wording within them. By such logic, Kanon’s statement such “Krauss-sama and Natsuhi-sama lay sprawled on the floor inside the room” are simple facts. Battler’s statement that “Doctor Nanjo checked their pulse. Then, he announced that the two of them had died instantly.” and Nanjo’s statement, “I confirmed both of their deaths. there can be no doubt that they died instantly” sound truthful enough as well for two reason. 1. Why would they fake their deaths in the first place? A reason is necessary. I see little reason for them to fake their deaths as that’d highly mark them as culprits for the 1st twilight. For Krauss and Natsuhi to be the culprits of the 1st twilight they’d need a servant to lock the door. 2. They probably did die instantly like those from the first twilight. This is a fact that everyone can check. Once again these statements can be taken as truthful facts.

Jessica’s statement that, “I searched all over the room looking for a clue..! In the end, I found that the windows and doors were all locked, making it a closed room” also sounds plausible enough. If there was a room where entering through the window would be worth exploiting would be Kinzo’s room and the guesthouse. I just don’t see anyone getting in or leaving Natsuhi’s room using the window.. that only leaves the door. And once again the suspicions go toward the servants after this twilight.

The tricky part is the help’s statement which is awfully vague. “All of us servants were together the whole time.” And Kanon’s “All of us servants can provide an alibi for all of the other servants.

But if Shannon = Kanon then they’re the same person and of course they can provide an alibi for themselves despite being a single person.. which is .. yeeeah.. but this isn’t the regular Umineko so this may not even apply (at this point this wasn’t clear.) According to Kanon they can all provide alibis for themselves which implies they were together the whole time, possibly in pairs though this is not expanded upon. If Kanon is lying then this isn’t true and servants cannot provide alibis for one another. If he is telling the truth then the servants can provide alibis for each other because they knew where they were when the murder happen.

Maria: “We put duct tape all over the outside of the doors and windows, sealing them!”
Jessica: I’m sure the culprit left some sort of closed in this room! We made sure that no one would be able to enter or leave until the policed arrived!”
Battler:“Then, we did the same to the dining hall. We also sealed the dining hall in the same way.

“All of the windows had steel bars on them, so it is impossible to enter or leave by them.” Therefore, we’ll say that they can seal the whole mansion by sealing the two doors, the front one and the back one.”

”The culprit of the first twilight really did kill six people.”

> Counter : [ Only a valid move if the seals remain unbroken at all times. The culprit can easily leave the mansion and go to the guesthouse by breaking the seals. They are seals after all and no seals would stop the culprit. Moreover it is only valid if the seals are later checked by a non-culprit character or confirmed to never have been tempered with by the red. I don’t see wh-

“The group sealed the room at the same time they left. No culprit joined the group as they left. Also, all of the seals on Natsuhi’s room, the dining hall, and the mansion itself will not be broken.”

> And there we have it. Fantastic red. Let me guess. Someone is going to say, this place is too dangerous. Let’s go to the guest house.

Nanjo: “We reached the conclusion that the entire mansion itself should be preserved. [We also sealed the mansion itself, and all of us took refuge in the guesthouse.”

Now there’s no doubt that six people died. Careful. I said that there is no doubt that six people are dead. That is all I’m accepting from the statement. But if I disregard any doubts I may and I accept the red for what it is then it’d mean that six people are certainly dead therefore none of them be would the culprit, therefore the culprit has to be one of the remaining people. This culprit then killed Natsuhi and Krauss and hid somewhere. Nevertheless, because all people are accounted for it implies the culprit is not among the group of survivors but currently inside –

– Natsuhi’s room –

“No culprit joined the group as they left” is the most important piece of information here because it means that nobody split up. The second most important piece of information is that the seals will not be broken, which gives an answer to my theory that the seals would be ultimately irrelevant because no one would go back to the mansion to re-check those seals.

Jessica: “George nii-san got upset, so we all went outside to look for them.
George: “I prayed she was still alive. However, I was forced to acknowledge that she was dead..
Nanjo: “Of course, I also examined her and confirmed her death.”

There something suspicious about these statements. Explanation why. They all went together, they stayed together, George’s statement makes sense with this character. At this point Nanjo’s statement is one that can be doubted because he was the only one who confirmed Shannon’s death. Unless her death was beyond reasonable doubt there is a chance Shannon was alive, thus a culprit. Another key point to this would-be theory is that George has to acknowledge Shannon was dead because Nanjo told him so. However, George wasn’t the only one there, the presence of Jessica in the scene adds a third person to this equation. Even if one or two people are lying such as confirming a death that didn’t happen, a third person’s presence – unless that person was also fooled or another culprit – implies there’s a level of greater truthfulness to it. The person lying would have to fool two people, not to mention in a situation where a death would be difficult to fake. Unlike any of past twilights from other games, Shannon’s corpse is out in the open, visible and thus for everyone to confirm her death for themselves. By these statements they have to be telling the truth. But don’t take my word for it. Wait for the red to dispel those remaining doubts.

Gohda: “When the two of them left, we were busy checking the locks around the guesthouse. So, not one of us has an alibi..!

Jessica: “Later on, we learned that George alone had an alibi. At least regarding Shannon’s death, it was impossible for George nii-san to be the murderer.

Battler: “To turn it around.. anyone could have killed her besides George-aniki.

Gohda: “To prevent the culprit from using for any mischief, we destroyed the master key Shannon-san had held on the spot.

Oh boy, Battler turning things around as always. I do not doubt you, loyal Gohda, you. It’s no surprise that in the midst of confusion more than one suspect would have no alibi. There’s little reason to doubt Jessica’s latest statement as it is another fact that is automatically verified by everyone. Again, verified by everyone means that everyone is ok with what just has been said.

George might not have an alibi for the rest what he does have one for Shannon’s death, therefore if he was a culprit Jessica would be lying which would make her a culprit. Question is, why would Jessica aid the culprit in the murder of her family and the furniture she adores? There is nothing to gain from it. Motive. She lacks a motive. I can see one or the other but both of them make Jessica’s involvement in the crimes senseless knowing her character. She has no motive therefore she is not a culprit. If that’s not enough then we can always go through her statements again. This much we know.

Moving on to the other suspects, Gohda is only stating a fact, moreover the involvement of many people not denying what he says ensures he isn’t lying. Moreover it makes no sense for him to pointlessly incriminate himself and others. Fact: It is true they all lack alibis. It’s a fact that they destroyed the master key after Shannon was killed. The same can be said for all the other master keys they destroyed.

Oh, before we forget something exceptionally important. Master keys cannot be used by any other person other than the servants because only the servants can use them in this mystery. They aren’t of any use therefore they practically cease to be of any use in the story. I propose that, simply by the fact that they are removed from the servants it indicates they are truly dead. The reason behind it being that one of the rules stipulates that master keys cannot be stolen, handed over, or removed from the servants in any way. These master keys are specially made and for the use of the servants. It’s a rule they cannot be taken away from them or used by anyone else other than themselves. This rule has already given away the fact the servants are confirmed to be dead the moment their keys are removed.

Being true that only non-culprits are killed then we theorize the following. Genji is not a culprit! Neither Shannon nor Kanon are culprits! I will even venture to claim that even in future events any of the other servants remaining who will be killed is not a culprit by the laws given in this mystery! Go ahead, Bernkastel. Proclaim the furniture’s demise already ensured by the rules of your mystery.

“From now on, Kanon is treated as being killed. Also, Kanon’s master key is treated as being destroyed.”

That’s the information I needed to hear to prove this theory, Skannon in this mystery too, and the two being confirmed to be dead when they were both killed in the 4th twilight. The culprit’s identity is even clearer now. The rule that culprits aren’t dead lead us to conclude all the deaths are only from people who are not culprits.

Servants are not culprits and this can be backed up by the very red this mystery gave us, that all master keys cannot be removed, stolen or used by any other than the servants. By destroying the keys the mystery admits the servants have been really murdered without a shadow of a doubt even without then need of the red.

Nanjo:Judging by these wounds, Gohda-san and Kumasawa-san died instantly, I believe.”

Jessica: “Like hell they could survive after this..! Gohda and Kumasawa are both dead!

Once again Jessica and Nanjo’s statement agree on the same thing. The fact that the wounds are so fatal and that they are verified by everyone tells us they’re certainly dead. The nature of the wounds more than suggests they died instantly. Normally they could be argued (as with most deaths in the original story) but the fact that there are so many witnesses and they call can confirm it with their own eyes makes a strong argument to believe this is to be true. Gohda and Kumasawa are really dead.

The conclusion we’re reaching is that neither of these two servants was the culprit therefore they weren’t lying before, therefore the door of Natsuhi’s room on the second twilight was truly locked. Therefore the door of the first twilight was really locked when everyone arrived. We remove Gohda and Kumasawa from the suspect list! Also we do the same for Shannon and Kanon as already theorized!

Our suspect list has gone down by 4! (Or is it really three?) Counter. Counter. Counter.

Battler: “Well, we have been busy, keeping a lookout and locking up and all that. Once again, none of us has an alibi.

Jessica: “All of us.. in other words, the four cousin and Doctor Nanjo couldn’t have killed Gohda-san and Kumasawa-san.

Jessica’s statement has no basis. According to Battler none of them have alibis meaning that they all could have done it because no one knows what they were doing in the time the two crimes occurred. And so her statement is contradictory because it has been explained they were not together the whole time. Battler is telling the truth. There’s no reason for him to lie about something that would jeopardize his position as non-culprit. None of them had alibis therefore any of them could’ve done it. That’s natural conclusion one reaches since they are the only remaining survivors. Yet something doesn’t up add up.

YET, Jessica’s statement is written in purple meaning two things. A) Jessica is lying thus she’s a culprit thus attempting to not cast suspicion on herself but on an imaginary culprit outside the guesthouse. That’s the reason why she can lie in purple since only culprits can lie.

Then there’s the other possibility (and because Jessica as the culprit holds no water anyway.)

B) Jessica is telling the truth. None of them could have done it, thus and this is the only possibility assuming none of them did it and a crime really did happen as it has been proclaimed. The culprit then must be someone from the outside, meaning that we now have a rock-solid confirmation to our theory that someone in previous twilights is the culprit. By logic if none of the survivors currently in the guest house is the culprit of this twilight then the only culprit that there can be is someone from the outside.

George: “I guessed that someone might have snuck in, so I checked around, but the guesthouse was still completely locked up.

Battler: “That’s impossible. No master keys exist anymore expect the two keys on the two people who lied dead here.

George’s statement suggests that everything was locked up (according to him), similarly his conclusions are based on his actions and no one else. Assuming he’s telling the truth the only plausible conclusion is that a culprit likely snuck in BEFORE he checked the locks around the guest house. OR the culprit snuck in AFTER he checked the locks in the guesthouse.

Either way we always reach the same conclusion: By logic we reach the conclusion that an accomplice is required to unlock the door or windows for the culprit. That person or the culprit himself locked up after he was inside the guesthouse!

There’s no further explanation about the two crimes. It’s also possible they occurred outside the guesthouse and were brought inside the guest house. However, it seems pointless and a risky move from the culprit to go through all that trouble unless the culprit’s intent was to make the survivors believe the culprit is one of their own OR already inside the guest house so they would leave the guest house, huh? Not exactly where we will be going but an interesting theory.

No master keys exist anymore therefore it was impossible for a culprit to enter the guest house using a key to unlock the door. By logic the multiple ways the two crimes had to be committed are in following ways. Let’s list them.

1) Gohda and Kumasawa temporary left the guest house for X reasons. When they did they were both killed by the culprit and dragged back inside the guesthouse. By this it is believed there were two culprits to do with on time.

2) The culprit was already on the guest house before the survivors even arrived. This means that the culprit from the 1st Twilight faked his death and ran back to the guest house because he knew they would eventually head there (the following deaths would be the product of another culprit). Then the culprit merely hid in the guest house until it was time to strike.

3) The culprit entered the guesthouse through the windows before the windows were locked as initially they weren’t all locked. The culprit locked the windows himself before they were checked by anyone in the guest house to create the illusion no one got in.

4) The door was locked, the windows were locked, yet the culprit got in and shot both Gohda and Kumasawa. This means the culprit was let in by another culprit either by the door or window.

Do some of them sound far-fetched? Do some of them make little sense? There are some theories which are truer than others. Having the culprit move the corpses inside the guest house would be a creative touch but I don’t see him doing that with the little time he has. Having the servants temporary leave the guest house for x reasons is another theory I came up with. To challenge my own theory I proposed that there is little merit for the servants act in such way when it is so dangerous to leave the guest house. It makes no sense for them to leave the guest house and equally risky for the culprit to bring them back inside when they can go “missing” instead. Therefore the servants didn’t leave the guest house, it happened inside that room, and they were killed by the culprit the moment they saw him. As for the details of how the culprit entered the guest house are still shady. The culprit could’ve entered the guest house before they all did but at the cost of leaving all the work to the accomplices. Moreover, the main door was probably locked as it should and a key was needed. The culprit doesn’t have the key so the only way he could enter is through the windows. The windows are also likely locked as they should because it is after hours and the servants have the duty of locking the windows.

By their death it has already been confirmed the servants are not culprits so there is no possibility (other than human blunder) they purposely left a window open. Therefore the culprit had to be let in by an accomplice who is already inside the guesthouse. Because the only people in the guesthouse are the remaining survivors, one of them is by association the culprit’s accomplice. Because none of the servants are culprits, there only five remaining suspects, one of them is absolutely a culprit. And this I proclaim with certainty. We are almost done.

Jessica: “H, he’s dead.. He’s been killed..!

George: “Even I.. can say for sure that this was an instant death..

How was it possible for Nanjo to be killed? Jessica’s statement is a reaction. George’s statement agrees with her reaction. From his death it is gathered that Nanjo was not a culprit and he had been telling the truth all along. Kumasawa and Gohda are dead. Shannon is dead. Genji from the 1st Twilight hadn’t faked his death therefore not a culprit. The list of suspects goes down to four.

Maria:Everything is locked up perfectly. How did it happen, if this is a closed room!”

Jessica: “Impossible! Judging by the circumstances, Maria, Battler, George nii-san and all couldn’t have killed Doctor Nanjo!

George: “In the first place, no one could kill Doctor Nanjo inside the guesthouse!”

Battler: “And look at this. Simply put, this is proof that Doctor Nanjo didn’t leave the guesthouse…!

By reasoning it has been concluded that one of the survivor is one of the culprits. It’s a fact that Nanjo has been murdered.

Nanjo did not go outside nor was he waiting for the culprit otherwise that would make him a culprit too, which he isn’t. Should the culprit have a master key then the culprit entered the guesthouse by himself. This is not possible because only servants carry and can use master keys. Should the culprit had an accomplice and all master keys were discarded appropriately as the story suggests – then the culprit had an accomplice inside the guesthouse to let him in. It’s a fact that Nanjo is dead we need the whodunnit. There are two possibilities: A) The culprit who killed Gohda and Kumasawa is responsible for Nanjo’s death. The culprit hid inside the guesthouse after he killed the first two. Much probable yes, not necessarily, no. B) The culprit is one of the accomplices inside the guest house. The accomplice waited for the right moment to strike Nanjo. George’ statement is the only one which discredits the possibility of one of the four being responsible for Nanjo’s death. Assuming he is telling the truth it is impossible for them any of the four survivors to have killed Nanjo.

George: “poor.. Jessica-chan. She probably died instantly.

Maria: “There’s no way she could live through this.”

Battler: “The three of us were together the whole time! George-aniki, Maria and I couldn’t have killed Jessica!

Maria: “Yeah. The Three of us couldn’t have killed Jessica.

George: “As if Maria-chan could kill anyone. Maria-chan couldn’t kill anyone.

Maria: “Kihihi, thanks. George onii-chan couldn’t kill an adult. He could kill a kid though.”

Jessica’s death confirms she is not the culprit as already theorized. Battler’s statement involves everyone’s agreement with him therefore it is true that none of them three killed Jessica. Maria is beyond doubt unable to kill anyone therefore she cannot be a culprit or even an accomplice. In this mystery an accomplice = culprit. To be a culprit one needs to lie and kill, since Maria is not a culprit Rosa isn’t a culprit since each child confirmed their parents’ death. Maria guarantees that George isn’t the culprit for the last two twilights because he cannot kill an adult. All clues have been given and the only thing left to do is solve the puzzle.

Page 2 -> Solution :  Final Breakdown of the Illusion (Who, why and How)
Page 3 -> Additional Writer’s Notes

10k word post. This was an amazingly long post. Congratulations for reading it all and for reaching the solution of Bernkastel’s mystery.


6 thoughts on “Umineko Twilight 49 – Intellectual Masturbation (Adventures of the Cynical Detective)

  1. Bern’s mistery was easy to solve thanks to the very strict rules she imposed. What I find more intriguing is WHY Ryukishi decided to put this kind of mistery in the final game.
    I think this is one of many jabs that Ryukishi threw to the readers in this tale (the army of goats eating Rokkenjima being the most blatant).
    “Here, let’s strip the mistery of all magical elements, let’s throw away the multiple keys, the body doubles, the closed room tricks. I even underlined the relevant lines for you! Can you solve this basic mistery, you amateur detective? Is this really what you wanted?”. That’s what I think Ryukishi was saying to us.

    • Wouldn’t put it past Ryukishi, eh? I think that like most things in Umineko it can be interpreted in several ways.

      The puzzle could be the last chance for the readers to solve a puzzle directly from the author with an actual solution.

      It could be Bernkastel really stalling for time and throwing a mystery to the readers. One who anyone could solve with some thinking, also one showing us the”truth” we reached in EP7.

      It also be (I’m voting for this one the most) A trial, a rite of passage/final test/ to graduate the readers from all those mysteries they’ve been throwing at us. If you can’t solve this, well, you probably should practice more.

      It could also be a confirmation of the (well not all) Rules Umineko questions Arcs played by. A shorter version of Knox and Van Dine if you will.

      It could just be the fact of seeing the two main characters work together and solve a mystery, which was quite interesting seeing how the two used to be enemies. And many others.

      Granted, the difficulty isn’t the hardest one (maybe because they did want all the readers to move forward) and like you said the very rules they gave us made the mystery quite solvable. Personally, I would have really liked for Ryukishi to implement something like this in his games. Readers actually solving mysteries (at least make some actual calls) so they can move on to the next sections.

      It’s an ambitious idea with some serious tweaking required but one that would really change how we look at the series.

  2. As usual, one of the goats here!… Hmn, well, you know. I’ve been following you for some time, but haven’t actually commented to the best of my faulty memory. I very much enjoyed the… Interesting possible scenario… You’ve created, and if you wouldn’t mind would love to nitpick some details with you later! I doubt I can actually create a counter-scenario, but for the love of detective fiction there should always be a Hastings to one’s Poirot.

    But for now, as cynical as the detective (and all grow cynical eventually it seems), I do hope you used intellectual masturbation as the highest of praise!.. ‘Cuz, there’s not enough out there that is, in my mind. And intellectual masturbation is the best kind, wahaha! More to the point, I’d love to see a proper mystery from Ryukishi, or anyone really. It’s just that Ryukishi is shown he CAN write them, and they are rather hard to write while remaining fair… Probably one of the reasons for the ‘Fantasy’ route in Umineko, of course.

    If I may, however, back to you for a second. I’ve really enjoyed everything you’ve had to say, both in this tea party and in regard to mysteries in general. I was a mystery fan who had Umineko recommended to them, and feel that even with it’s flaws, it is a splendid piece, the first modern mystery I’ve read in some time and truly enjoyed… Again, flaws considered. Your thoughts are insightful, and I feel that though we have not talked directly, we would be good friends.

    Even if the seagull cries wolf (that sounded much wittier in my head i swear), I hope you review more works and just continue to share your thoughts from time to time. I can’t promise to comment, but I can promise to enjoy. Wishing you the v. best of health and success in all endeavors, warmly


    • The kind compliments are well appreciated. *tips hat*

      Why, of course, the title was intended in a positive manner, a bit more candidly than satirical. There are, after all, few better brain stimulant than solving a difficult puzzle and thinking of the probabilities before reaching the answer. Though I do admit being peculiar about titles..

      Fully explaining the whole train of thought is no small task and so much of what it is usually said here is only a fraction. This is another reason why I especially made this “mystery” section of Umineko EP8 especially comprehensive to show all the possible thinking that it could inspire (this being only of one person. Imagine from everyone’s). I’ve been eagerly looking forward to R07 writing a regular mystery since EP5 happened. The mystery that Umineko created could not have been possible without the much extravagant and mysterious magic part yet I do want to see more regular mysteries in the future. I see incredible potential in it and for the series (or maybe a new series) taking a different (if only temporary) turn. This is, in a way, also wishing for the author to keep making the audience think.

      I love solving problems which often come in form of mysteries or puzzles, thus whenever there is an incredible impossible problem to be solved I’ll be there forming some theories of my own. Due to not restrictions and such, however, they don’t make it here. Still I have played and read other material in a similar vein of this franchise so you’ll probably find every now and then acts of Theorizing around here. I’ll recommend to take eventually take a look at those titles as you may find them to your liking.

      Thank you for commenting.

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