Originally published at: The Making of The Monarch Papers - Episode Four B - Ackerly Green
Here’s the second half of an epic two-parter all about Brandon Lachmann, Shard City, our first Live Events, and the first Assessment!
In this episode, CJ, Simon, and Jonny recap the end of Fragment Four and look back on Phase 1. After meeting Reader to acquire a second Traveller’s Disk, recruits worked frantically to solve the third and fourth trials, while hiding their progress on the Basecamp Forum from the antagonist group The Devoted. Readers used clues in a poem about clocks to reverse engineer a phone number which, when called from a particular set of payphones in New York City, produced a message from Brandon Lachmann. The fourth and final portion of the fragment took place at the 42nd Street Public Library, where Brandon had hidden the pages of The Glass Report he had told recruits to find, as well as a letter that revealed some surprising information about Sacha, the leader of the Devoted.
The group discusses the many difficulties of live events, including uncontrollable issues with pre-recorded phone messages, locating working payphones, live streaming from public buildings that prohibit video, and a distinct lack of cell phone service in library buildings. CJ describes the added difficulty of observing issues from a distance but being unable to intervene.
The end of the Fragment also introduced the first Magimystical Assessment, a test given to recruits after every four fragments to produce a key for the Book of Briars. The group describes the original interactive choice-based setup, and the modal multiple-choice replacement that became “the bane of the Mountaineers’ existence.” Plus, CJ reveals how the titular Monarch Papers developed after Phase 1.