Study Guide

The Westing Game

The Westing Game Summary

Sunset Towers is a new apartment building owned by the Westing Estate that's luxurious, stylish... and totally empty. So far.

Barney Northrup selects tenants for the apartments who are families, professionals, and secret-keepers: Grace, Jake, Angela, and Turtle Wexler; Mr., Madame, and Doug Hoo; George, Catherine, Chris, and Theo Theodorakis; Judge Ford, Crow, Sydelle Pulaski, and Flora Baumbach. The narrator reveals that one tenant steals, one sets off bombs, and one isn't even supposed to be there in the first place.

Huh. What could possibly go wrong?

The tenants all move in that September. On Halloween, Turtle Wexler is dared to go into the Westing house, where she sees a dead body. The next morning, she reads the obituary for Sam Westing, of the Westing estate and Westing Paper Products, in the newspaper. Sixteen people, including most of the Sunset Towers tenants, are named as heirs in the will and are called to the reading of the will; they have to define their positions in life in order to show up. The other people called in are Otis Amber, the delivery boy; Dr. Deere, Angela Wexler's fiancé; and Sandy McSouthers, the doorman.

At the reading (led by Ed Plum) the will reveals that Westing was murdered... and that one of the heirs is the culprit. The heirs are all divided into teams (eight pairs of two) and given clues to solve the murder, along with $10,000. The winner will inherit Westing's estate.

Again... what could possibly go wrong?

People are reminded that it's not what clues they have, it's what clues they don't have that will really matter. Sydelle makes a shorthand copy of the will. Turtle thinks the will means they should play the stock market.

Back at Sunset Towers, they're snowed in. People are working on their clues. Everyone's nice to Sydelle until her copy of the will is lost. The judge throws a party for the heirs, where they're all suspicious and spy on one another.

The morning after the party, some heirs meet in the coffee shop to go over their clues, and Sydelle gets her copy of the will back. A bomb goes off. No one's hurt, but it's super-scary. Over the phone, the judge hires a private investigator whose voice sounds awfully familiar.

Later that day, all the heirs are having dinner in the Chinese restaurant on the fifth floor when a second bomb goes off. This time Sydelle's hurt and taken to the hospital (they're not snowed in anymore). Angela visits her there and wonders about what she's doing with her life, and then discovers someone has anonymously given her two more clues.

The characters keep working on their clues: Flora Baumbach and Turtle worry about the stock market, while the judge realizes Mrs. Westing is a big blank spot in her investigation. At Angela's wedding shower, Turtle is reaching over to help her sister with a present when Angela shoves her away. The third bomb goes off. No one's hurt except Angela, who's burned and bleeding. While she's taken to the hospital, everyone else gathers suspiciously in the lobby. When Turtle visits Angela in the hospital, Sydelle figures out that Angela's the bomber. Turtle and Angela talk about inner versus outer beauty— Angela will have a permanent scar.

The judge and Sandy keep doing research, while Theo and Doug spy on Otis. The heirs receive messages to go to another will reading that Saturday night. In the meantime, they have to state their life positions again. Dr. Deere takes Chris for a new medical treatment, Angela gets more clues from an anonymous source, and the judge and Sandy realize that Sydelle is there by mistake. Theo causes a lab explosion, and then discovers that Otis and Crow work at a soup kitchen.

Turtle sets off a fourth bomb in the elevator and she burns her precious braid. She confesses to all the bombings, and is taken to meet with the judge. The judge figures out that Turtle was just protecting Angela, the real bomber. Meanwhile, at the hospital, Angela and Sydelle put all their clues together and figure out that they point to one word: "America."

That Saturday night, the heirs meet for the second part of the will reading. They reveal their answers, and the will says that all of them are wrong. Their teams are broken apart, and the will says they'd better figure out the answer before someone else dies. Sandy suggests they put all their clues together; when they do, they spell out Crow's full name. Suddenly, Sandy dies.

Crow gives herself up to the police as an answer, and everyone else goes back to the judge's apartment. They start to go back over the will and Turtle realizes something's not right, so she calls for a trial. The judge presides, while Turtle interrogates witnesses. Otis says he's a private investigator, Dr. Deere says Westing might not have been dead, and Turtle claims that Crow's not guilty of murdering Sandy. They realize one word is missing from the transcription of the will.

With no missing word, it reads, "The heir who wins the windfall will be the one who finds the… FOURTH" (26.93). Turtle realizes Westing was four people (three of them were Westing, Barney Northrup, and Sandy…) and she knows who the fourth one is. She also realizes that the true question of the will is who's going to discover Westing's fourth identity. (She keeps all of this secret, though.)

Crow returns, innocent. The heirs read the very last part of the will, which says nothing about money, just that they all get shares in Sunset Towers. The judge says this means they lost the game. Everyone watches as the Westing house explodes in fireworks.

Later that night, Turtle goes to Julian Eastman's house. Eastman is the Westing Paper Products chairman. She addresses him as Sandy and says she won: she found the fourth. Everyone else's lives go on fairly normally. Five years later, everyone seems to be very successful. Angela's gone back to school, Doug's won the Olympics, the Hoos' restaurant is doing well, and Chris, Theo, and Turtle are doing well in school. Several years after that, Turtle stays with Sandy/Westing (as Eastman) while he really dies. She finally wins the prize and goes to play chess with her niece Alice.

  • Chapter 1

    Sunset Towers

    • Sunset Towers, which is on Lake Michigan, faces east (away from the sunset), is empty and ready to be populated.
    • Barney Northrup, who's not a real person, mails out letters to the building's chosen tenants.
    • The letters are delivered by a strange, 62-year-old delivery boy on July 4th.
    • These letters invite tenants to move into Sunset Towers. The building has great views, service, air conditioning, and is in a great neighborhood. The letters say there are only a few units left, and that the tenants should call right away. There's also space in the building for a doctor's office, coffee shop, and restaurant.
    • Only six letters are mailed, but all six receivers respond. Each makes an appointment with Barney Northrup to show it to them.
    • First, Barney shows the building to Grace and Jake Wexler. He tells them that there's only one apartment left. Grace is impressed by the carpeting and chandeliers, and thinks it's convenient. Jake's less convinced, even though, as Barney tells them, it's cheaper than their old house. Jake will also be able to use the doctor's office.
    • Grace is already imagining how she'll decorate the apartment, and is excited by the thought of living in such a high-class location.
    • By the sixth appointment, with Sydelle Pulaski, Barney's still telling people there's only one apartment left. Sydelle's not as impressed with the apartment as the Wexlers are, but she wants to live in the upscale building—even though she doesn't have a lake view.
    • Barney rents out the whole building in one day to lots of different people, some with families, and some who are alone. The narrator tells us their professions, which include doctor, secretary, judge, and restaurateur. The narrator also tells us that one of them is a mistake.
  • Chapter 2

    Ghosts Or Worse

    • On September 1, everyone moves in; a posted sign says that Sunset Towers belongs to the Westing estate.
    • On September 2, Shin Hoo's restaurant (on the fifth floor) has a grand opening. It's not doing as well as the first floor coffee shop, though. All the neighbors seem content.
    • Then, it's the end of October. Sandy McSouthers, Theo Theodorakis, Doug Hoo, and Otis Amber are hanging out at the end of the Sunset Towers driveway, looking at smoke coming from the Westing estate.
    • Turtle rides her bike up and draws attention to it. She asks if that means old Mr. Westing is back.
    • Doug, the track star, avoids touching Turtle's braid, because whenever someone touches it she kicks him or her in the shins. Nice.
    • Otis says no. Mr. Westing is either on a private island or dead—and if he is dead, his gruesome body is spread out on the living room rug at the Westing estate.
    • Sandy says that would serve him right, but someone alive has got to be up there because of the smoke. He says, maybe it's the two kids from Westingtown.
    • When Doug, Theo, and Turtle ask for details, Sandy and Otis tell them that something horrible happened to those two kids one year ago on Halloween. They were bet a dollar they couldn't stay in the house five minutes. As soon as they went inside, they came right back out screaming.
    • One fell off a cliff to his death and the other's still stuck in an insane asylum, where all he says is "purple waves," and keeps staring at his hands, which were covered in blood when he came out of the house.
    • At first, Doug and Theo seem skeptical, but soon they're as horrified as Turtle is. Turtle bets them she can stay in there for $2 a minute.
    • Meanwhile, from upstairs on the second floor, Theo's brother Chris watches them. Chris, who's in a wheelchair, has to spend a lot of time in their apartment, so he watches birds and people. He sees Theo and Turtle make the bet, but before that he'd been watching a bird—a purple martin—when he saw somebody with a limp, although he couldn't tell who, go into the Westing house. Right after that, he started seeing smoke.
    • Chris has a great view of the Westing house, which has seventeen covered windows. In contrast, none of the windows in Sunset Towers have screens. However, Chris feels like someone's watching —maybe God.
    • What Chris doesn't understand about that is how God could let him have his physical condition. His body starts to spasm as he waits for Theo to come in.
  • Chapter 3

    Tenants In and Out

    • Inside Sunset Towers, pretty Angela Wexler stares out at the lake while Flora Baumbach fits her in her wedding dress. Flora lives on the second floor, and they're doing the fitting in the Wexlers' apartment, on the third floor.
    • Angela cries out, and Flora thinks she pricked her with a pin, but Angela's just stunned to see the smoke coming from the Westing house.
    • Grace reprimands Flora, and then thinks about how she could've been an interior decorator.
    • Turtle comes in to tell them about the smoke, but she's late. She asks Flora to hem her witch costume so she can wear it that night. (Flora doesn't get up from the carpet, because Turtle kicked her in the shin the previous day.)
    • Grace tells Turtle Flora's occupied with Angela's wedding dress, and that she should work on looking pretty instead.
    • Turtle says wedding dresses are stupid, and so is her sister's fiancé.
    • Grace almost hits her, but doesn't. Instead, she says Angela's fiancé is really smart, and when they get married, Angela's whole name will be Angela Deere.
    • Turtle tries to leave to tell her father about the smoke, but Grace doesn't let her.
    • Angela says she'll help Turtle with the witch costume.
    • Meanwhile, Mrs. Crow visits Jake Wexler to have a corn removed from her foot. She startles him by shouting out, "Smoke!" when she sees it coming from the Westing house.
    • Jake is startled, but tries to calm her down.
    • Mrs. Crow tells Jake that Turtle kicked her in the shins, and says they don't have any religion in their home. She says old Mr. Westing was a sinner.
    • Upstairs in the Chinese restaurant, Mr. Hoo doesn't believe his son when Doug tells him Sandy's scary story. He tells Doug to go study instead. Instead of studying, Doug jogs and does sit-ups.
    • Mr. Hoo is disappointed about how there are only two dinner reservations, and eats a chocolate bar. He thinks to himself that if Mr. Westing is home, he won't get off so easy this time. A woman looks out the restaurant window as if she can see to China.
    • Down in the driveway, Sandy helps Judge J.J. Ford out of her car. He tells her about the smoke too, and asks her if she believes in ghosts.
    • She says no. When Sandy says he was just saying what Otis said, the judge calls Otis stupid. Then she feels bad. She worries about how she can repay Mr. Westing some money she seems to owe him, and asks Sandy not to mention her words about Otis.
    • Back up on floor two, Theo tells his brother Chris a fantastic story about who might be in the Westing house. Chris doesn't say anything about what he really saw.
    • Meanwhile, Sydelle Pulaski arrives at Sunset Towers by taxi. She thinks no one ever notices her, including doorman Sandy, and also thinks no one's friendly. The only people who pay attention are Chris, who she thinks is sweet, and Turtle, who kicked her too.
    • She unloads crutches, paint, and paintbrushes, and thinks about how people will finally notice her.
  • Chapter 4

    The Corpse Found

    • It's Halloween night: Turtle's dressed as a witch and prepped with supplies, including her mother's silver cross, for staying in the Westing house.
    • Doug's acting as timekeeper, and Turtle's committed to staying twenty-five minutes, which would make $50. She tells herself she's not scared, and goes inside.
    • Eleven minutes pass, and Doug hears her screaming. She comes running out, screaming, leaving her supplies behind.
    • We find out she saw a dead body, not on a rug like Otis said, but in a bed, and she heard a whisper— either "pur-ple" or "Tur-tle." She left behind her mother's cross, too. But she managed to stay for twelve minutes, so she's owed $24.
    • The next day, when the morning paper arrives, she takes it back to her bed and sees the dead man's picture in it, along with his obituary.
    • The obituary's headline says "Sam Westing Found Dead" (4.15) and gives some details about his life: he'd been missing thirteen years; he was sixty-five; he was the son of immigrants; he was the founder of Westing Paper Products; his estate is worth $200 million. The obituary also says he loved games, including chess, and was very patriotic: he loved fireworks.
    • On a personal level, his daughter Violet died tragically and his wife left him. Then he was in a car accident with his friend Sidney Sikes, on their way to a court hearing, and disappeared.
    • Turtle's impressed by the money, but she feels weird that the article doesn't say who discovered the body. She thinks back to how she saw a note, "If I am found dead in bed," and touched the man's dead hand, before she started screaming and ran away.
    • She tells herself it's no big deal, that no one noticed her, and leaves to get her twenty-four bucks.
    • At lunchtime, Otis has to deliver sixteen letters, including one to himself. They're from the attorney E.J. Plum, saying that each recipient is named in Sam Westing's will, and has to attend the reading of the will the next day. Each person has to sign a receipt and write down his or her position (like a job, or how they define themselves).
    • Grace signs and writes "housewife," then "decorator," then changes to "heiress." Madame Hoo just writes an X. Chris writes "Christos Theodorakis, birdwatcher." Otis calls himself a "deliverer."
  • Chapter 5

    Sixteen Heirs

    • The heirs all arrive at the Westing house to hear the will be read. First to arrive are Grace, Angela, and Turtle. Jake doesn't come. Grace thinks she is the heir, because she kind of remembers a rich uncle in the family. She says she wonders what happened to her cross.
    • Turtle already knows her way around the house because of her Halloween trespassing.
    • They're met at the door by Crow, who takes their coats, and then go to the library to take their seats. Angela starts embroidering, while Turtle realizes the coffin has the dead man she saw in it. Now he's dressed like Uncle Sam and is holding her mom's cross.
    • D. Denton Deere, Angela's fiancé, arrives; he's one of the heirs too. Grace makes Turtle move so he can sit with them.
    • Flora arrives and Grace introduces her to Dr. Deere, even though she wonders why Flora is there. Flora goes to sit with Turtle.
    • Otis arrives, shouting that he's there: then, Doug and Mr. Hoo come in, followed by Sandy.
    • Grace decides that since, obviously, not all these people were related to Mr. Westing—although she thinks she is—that the will must include servants.
    • Theo and Chris come in, but say their parents weren't invited. Chris says it's snowing, but because of his disability, only Theo and Flora understand him.
    • Flora talks to Chris in gibberish, and Theo scolds her; she almost cries, and everyone else pretends not to notice.
    • Dr. Deere diagnoses him with "Pyramidal tract involvement," trying to show Angela how smart he is, but she runs out instead.
    • Then, Judge Ford arrives. Mr. Hoo wants to get started, and does a little restaurant advertising.
    • The lawyer says they can't start till everyone's there. Grace and Mr. Hoo say their spouses aren't coming, and the lawyer says they're expecting a couple more.
    • Judge Ford wonders why such a youthful lawyer is in charge of such an important will, and can't figure out why she, or anyone, has been invited.
    • Angela returns and they all wait.
    • Crow comes in, followed by Sydelle on crutches. Everyone stares at Sydelle; she claims to have a wasting disease. She's wearing a purple dress with stripes, which makes Turtle think of purple waves.
    • Dr. Deere can't figure out what's happening with Sydelle, because she takes turns limping on each leg. But he makes up a diagnosis to satisfy Grace.
    • The lawyer gets going after Sydelle gets out her shorthand materials and says she's ready to take notes.
  • Chapter 6

    The Westing Will

    • Mr. Plum explains why he's reading the will, even though he never met Sam Westing. He says he verified the signatures on the will as belonging to Samuel W. Westing; Julian R. Eastman, Westing Paper Products Chairman; and Sidney Sikes.
    • The will has many parts. Part one begins by saying that Sam Westing, Wisconsin resident, is sane and that this is his last will. He has gathered his nieces and nephews together.
    • Grace interrupts the will by standing up and saying, "What?" The lawyer continues reading, and the next line of the will is one telling Grace to sit down.
    • Judge Ford says she's equally horrified by the idea of being related, and Grace is ashamed. Turtle says this means Angela and Dr. Deere can't get married; Dr. Deere pats Angela's hand and slices his finger on her needle.
    • Sydelle asks the lawyer to keep reading. The will continues, saying the body will be cremated the following day.
    • Part two of the will says that Sam Westing's "life was taken" (6.15), by one of the people in the room.
    • Chris spasms and points at everyone, while he calls out. Sandy asks if that means Sam Westing was murdered, and Mr. Hoo says it does—maybe Westing was poisoned at the coffee shop.
    • Theo, insulted, says the murderer is among them.
    • Judge Ford asks whether the police were notified, and Plum thinks they're going to do an autopsy. The judge thinks that's silly, because the body was already embalmed.
    • Plum keeps reading the will, which says the police are helpless, and only Sam Westing knows who did it. He tells them to find the guilty person.
    • Flora is upset by the will's language, and Crow says, "Amen."
    • The third part of the will asks who is worthy enough to be the heir. It says that the estate is at the crossroads and the one to win will be the one who finds…
    • Sandy interrupts the reading of the will by yelling, "Ashes!" No one else is amused, and Sandy has to explain he was just trying to make a joke.
    • Part four of the will says that America is great, and helped Westing. It encourages the heirs to "take stock" in America and "sing" its "praise."
    • Judge Ford stands up and says it's all a trick, or that Westing was nuts.
    • Part five of the will says that she should sit down and read a letter the lawyer will hand her.
    • Judge Ford says she won't read it, because anyone can buy proof of sanity if they have enough money.
    • This insults Dr. Deere, who thinks that doctors shouldn't be corrupt.
    • Part six of the will asks them to have a moment of silence.
  • Chapter 7

    The Westing Game

    • The reading of the will continues in the game room, where there are eight card tables, each with two chairs, set up. Theo sees a chess game set up, and moves a piece.
    • Sydelle shushes everyone and keeps taking notes.
    • Part seven of the will says the rules of the game. There are sixteen players, in teams of two. Each team gets $10,000 and their own clues. If anyone drops out of the game, his or her partner is also out. Pairs who aren't at the reading of the will lose the money and don't get their clues till the next session. The teams get two days' advance notice before the next session, where they can give one answer.
    • Otis asks Crow if she's glad he made her come to the reading, with $10,000 at stake.
    • Turtle shushes them to keep reading.
    • Part eight says that the heirs must go to assigned tables with their partners when their names and positions are read, but it's the other players who will "discover who [they] really are" (7.9).
    • Table one has Madame Hoo, "cook," and Jake Wexler, "standing or sitting when not lying down" (7.9). Grace and Mr. Hoo try to explain why their partners aren't there, but since they're not, table one gets no money and no clue.
    • Table two is Turtle Wexler, "witch," and Flora Baumbach, "dressmaker" (7.11). Everyone else is relieved not to be partnered with Turtle, because of the kicking.
    • At table three are Christos Theodorakis, "birdwatcher," and Dr. D. Denton Deere, "intern, St. Joseph's Hospital, Department of Plastic Surgery" (7.13). Theo thinks he should be his brother's partner, and Grace thinks Dr. Deere should be Angela's. Dr. Deere is silently annoyed because he's not in this to give free consultations. Chris is so excited to have him as a partner, though, and thinks the game's more fun than watching TV.
    • Team four is Alexander McSouthers, "doorman," and J. J. Ford, "judge, Appellate Division of the State Supreme Court" (7.16). People are surprised Sandy's first name isn't just Sandy, while Judge Ford is embarrassed that she put such an elaborate title when everyone else was so simple. She calls herself "Josie-Jo" and tells herself to stay cool.
    • At table five are Grace Windsor Wexler, "heiress," and James Shin Hoo, "restaurateur" (7.19). Both of them are mad to have lost $5000. People laugh at Grace for calling herself an heiress, but she thinks she'll have access to other people's clues and will win the game no problem. Mr. Hoo thinks that whoever did murder Westing should be rewarded.
    • Team six is Berthe Erica Crow, "Good Salvation Soup Kitchen," and Otis Amber, "deliverer" (7.22). Crow wonders why everyone's looking at her and if people believe she murdered Windy. Chris sees that Crow limps.
    • The next team is Theo Theodorakis, "brother," and Doug Hoo, "first in all-state high-school mile run" (7.25). On their way to the table, Theo makes another chess move, and wonders if his position is only "brother." Angela tells Sydelle that makes them partners.
    • At table eight are Sydelle Pulaski, "secretary to the president," and Angela Wexler, "none" (7.29). Angela is relieved her partner's not the murderer, although she is a little embarrassed to be with Sydelle—then she feels bad, because she knows her mother is really embarrassed.
    • Sydelle thinks she'll be noticed even more with a partner who's so beautiful, and Dr. Deere wonders why his fiancée called herself a nun.
    • Plum keeps reading the will. Part nine says that all the pairs there will get checks for $10,000, and gives the advice, "May God thy gold refine" (7.34).
    • Crow screams; the lawyer stepped on her sore foot.
    • Sandy asks Judge Ford if it's legal, and she says yes.
    • Part ten of the will says everyone will get a unique set of clues... and it's not what clues they get, but what clues they don't get that's important.
    • Dr. Deere says the clues make no sense. Chris is trying to put the words in order, but he knocks one off the table.
    • Flora picks it up and puts it back, saying she didn't see it. But she did: the clue was "plain."
    • Everyone looks at their clues except team eight; Sydelle thinks they should observe everyone else, and look at their own clues later.
    • Otis says he and his partner are king and queen; Doug asks if a clue is "on" or "no"; Judge Ford says it's insulting, but Sandy asks her not to quit so he won't lose the money, and she relents.
    • Turtle asks Flora if she's memorized the clues, and then swallows them so no one else can see.
    • Mr. Hoo and Grace think their clues don't mean anything. When Sandy jokes, "purple waves," Grace rearranges some clues.
    • Since no one understands, they ask for copies of the will. But Plum says they won't be available till after the game is over. Sydelle finally gets some attention, as people realize she was making a shorthand copy.
    • At Sandy's request, Plum reads the rest of the will: part eleven says death and life are senseless, and that not everyone is who they appear to be. It tells everyone to go home, and to buy Westing paper products.
  • Chapter 8

    The Paired Heirs

    • That night, there's a blizzard that traps almost everyone inside Sunset Towers with no electricity. Turtle goes to each house and sells multi-colored candles she made at summer camp. She sells the candles, which sort of tell how much time's passed, for five bucks apiece.
    • Almost everyone begin to work on their clues, with two exceptions: Jake goes to his office to sulk, because he thinks Grace cares more about the money than her uncle; Madame Hoo keeps staring out the window, because she doesn't even know about the game.
    • Dr. Deere, Otis, Crow, and Sandy aren't trapped in the building like everyone else.
    • Meanwhile, seven tenants have invited Sydelle and Angela over for tea, because they want to look at Sydelle's shorthand copy of the will. They go to each for tea and leave as soon as they're asked about the book.
    • The only apartment they're not invited to is the Theodorakis's, but they go anyway and visit with Chris. Sydelle brings him a macaroon and calls him "poor thing," which makes Angela feel bad.
    • Angela says Dr. Deere's snowbound, or he'd be helping Chris with the clues. Chris tells Angela she is pretty and asks her what the names of some grains are.
    • Angela mentions several types of grains and Chris repeats the last, "oats." When Chris asks them to read him their notes, they leave. He notices that one of them is only pretending to limp.
    • Chris thinks about his clues, which are "for," "plain," "grain," and "shed." He thinks "grain" means "oats," which means Otis, and that the "d" from "shed" combines with "for" to make "Ford." He decides to wait for Dr. Deere to keep going.
    • Chris looks out the window with his binoculars and sees someone moving at a window of the Westing house.
    • Meanwhile, Turtle thinks the instructions in the will mean to buy stock, and that the winner of the game will be the one who makes the most money. She thinks their clues, "sea," "mountain," "am," and "o," stand for stock abbreviations.
    • When Flora brings up finding the murderer, Turtle puts her off: Turtle doesn't want anyone to know she was in the house and saw the body. Flora says they should buy Westing paper products, like it said in the will, so Turtle adds that stock too.
    • Flora doesn't totally believe Turtle, but she likes being around her, so she goes with it. They agree that the quotation in the will, "May God thy gold refine," supports their plan, and is either from the Bible or Shakespeare.
    • Meanwhile, Mr. Hoo and Grace can't make sense of their clues: he thinks they mean "purple fruited." Grace says insensitive things about Madame Hoo and Sydelle; Mr. Hoo calls her prejudiced.
    • Grace says Sydelle can't be the murderer because she is disabled, and she doesn't know how her uncle knew Sydelle would wear a dress with purple waves on it to the reading.
    • Mr. Hoo suggests Grace murdered her uncle for his money.
    • Grace puts their clues in a new order—"fruited," "purple," "waves," "for," and "sea" – and excitedly suggests the murderer lives in apartment 4C. That's where Mr. Hoo lives.
    • Mr. Hoo complains that the coffee shop is stealing his business and that Angela and Sydelle didn't pay for their refreshments.
    • Grace leaves in a huff, before co-signing their $10,000 check. She calls herself "Gracie Windkloppel Wexler," and says she's useless.
    • Downstairs, Theo and Doug divide their money—half for Theo's parents, half for Doug's college fund—and start talking clues: "his," "n," "on," "to," "thee," and "for." Theo wonders if they're numbers, and Doug thinks "on" is "no." He says they've got nothing so far.
    • Theo presses for detail, and Doug says the only strange thing he saw the night of the murder was Turtle. He thinks she has a crush on him. Doug considers telling Theo what his father said about Westing but doesn't.
    • Theo says he was playing chess with another heir at the reading of the will, which could be another clue. He thinks they all have to put their clues together to figure out who the murderer is.
    • Doug doesn't understand how they'll do that, and leaves to practice jogging.
    • In another wing, Judge Ford reviews her clues—"skies," "am," "shining," and "brother"—and thinks they're a message, even though they're not as insulting as they could be.
    • She doesn't understand why Westing would leave clues revealing his murderer, because she doesn't understand how he could've let himself be murdered in the first place.
    • When she opens the letter from Plum, she finds a certification of Westing's sanity, signed by Sidney Sikes.
    • This reminds her of the obituary, so she checks it and remembers that Sikes was Westing's friend, and that the two were in a car accident. She trusts Sikes' opinion.
    • She decides to put the clues aside and wishes that Sydelle would let her look at the shorthand copy of the will, where she thinks the "real" clues are. She decides that the will "implies" (8.74) Westing was murdered by one of the game's players, and that figuring out the murderer is the answer.
    • Judge Ford thinks the game is awful and that people will keep playing anyway because they want to win the money. She worries that Westing set the whole thing up to punish one of the players, so she thinks she has to figure it out before anyone else, to stop the game from what she thinks will be a bad end.
    • She calls Barney Northrup but gets his machine. This is good, she thinks, because she shouldn't trust him. Instead, she calls the newspaper and asks for information about the other players.
    • Meanwhile, Angela and Sydelle confer in the Wexlers' apartment.
    • They go over their clues: "good"; "hood," which Sydelle misreads as "Hoo"; "from"; "spacious"; and "grace," which Angela worries about because it's her mother's name.
    • Sydelle reminds her that the will said that what they don't have is more important than what they do, and asks again if the Wexlers are really related to Sam Westing. Angela doesn't really answer.
    • Sydelle thinks their clues mean "Good gracious from hood space" and they should look in the parking lot.
    • Then, they review the other players' clues: "king" and "queen" from Otis and Crow; "purple waves" from Grace; "on" or "no" from Doug and Theo; "grains" from Chris. Angela shares "MT," which she found written by Turtle on a small piece of paper in a note about stock shares. She thinks it stands for a clue of "mountain" or "empty."
    • They look over all the clues. Sydelle's disappointed because none of their words are verbs, and they still don't have everything.
    • She asks about the judge, and Angela says the judge called herself a pawn in the game, and was looking back over the obituary.
    • Theo interrupts them briefly, asking if either wants to play chess. When they say no, he leaves.
    • Sydelle looks at the obituary and notices that Sam Westing was really into chess.
    • The two women realize that they've talked about three chess pieces: pawn (Judge Ford), king (Otis), and queen (Crow).
    • Sydelle reminds Angela that the will said the goal was "to win," and Angela wonders if it means "twins."
    • They go back to Sydelle's apartment so she can look over her copy of the will, but when they get there the door's open. Angela doesn't realize that Sydelle stops using her crutch as she races to the bathroom to look for her copy of the will, which has disappeared.
  • Chapter 9

    Lost And Found

    • Sydelle wants her copy of the will returned, so she puts up a small sign in the elevator asking for someone to return some lost papers. The narrator tells us that Sydelle never gets it back, but lots of other people start posting signs in the elevator.
    • The signs say that Grace will offer a reward for her lost cross; that anyone who wants to share clues should meet in the coffee shop; that someone stole Turtle's Mickey Mouse clock; that people should go to the Hoos' restaurant; that Flora lost a pearl necklace; that six more "clues" have been found, saying Turtle's a brat; that Judge Ford's having a party that night; and that Turtle should be home by 7:30.
    • When Turtle gets home, though, her mother's not there. She went home based on Flora's advice, although she doesn't agree with Flora that she should show her mother their clues if Grace asks.
    • Turtle thinks Flora's softhearted, and has taken the lead on their stock market adventure. She thinks that she'll be proven right at the next reading of the will.
    • Grace comes in and acts nice to Turtle, even braiding her hair. Turtle remembers that she kicked Theo's shin, because she thought he wrote that sign in the elevator—but it was actually Doug.
    • Grace tells Turtle she looks pretty and asks her about the clues. Turtle has hurt feelings and refuses.
    • When Angela and Sydelle join them, Grace notices Angela's not wearing her engagement ring. Angela says she has a rash.
    • Sydelle, who's dressed in black and white, comments on how small Turtle's room is.
    • Grace says they should all get ready, and mentions that Mr. Hoo will be catering the party.
    • Sydelle says she and Angela will be going to the party together; they'll be dressed as twins to see if they spook anyone about a new clue.
    • Grace reminds Sydelle about showing her the copy of the will again, and Sydelle is annoyed; Grace says if she wins, she'll give Angela the money. This upsets Turtle, who storms out.
    • Meanwhile, downstairs, Theo's tending bar for Judge Ford at her party. She receives a call back from the newspaper that tells her about her research. She learns that Angela and Dr. Deere are engaged, and then is interrupted by Mr. Hoo, who comes in with some appetizers.
    • The newspaperman tells her that an inventor named James Hoo sued Sam Westing over the disposable paper diaper.
    • Judge Ford asks Mr. Hoo to come to the party, with his wife.
    • The newspaperman says the only other information is on Doug Hoo, with all his sports medals.
    • The first guest arrives for the party.
  • Chapter 10

    The Long Party

    • Grace and Jake arrive, and Jake meets Judge Ford. Grace compliments her on the apartment, which she says is exactly like their three-bedroom. Judge Ford is confused because her apartment's a one-bedroom.
    • Judge Ford asks Grace how she's related to Westing, and Grace fumbles, saying she can't remember, but it was on her father's side.
    • Judge Ford smells a rat, because that means Grace would have a different maiden name.
    • No one wants to leave the party in case they miss anything, and everyone is very serious.
    • Jake thinks Mr. Hoo is a good partner for his wife. He gives Angela a hug and asks her about Dr. Deere, but this only makes her upset.
    • Angela thinks that people treat her like she's nothing without her fiancé, and she's embarrassed that her mother scolded her about dressing like Sydelle and made her change clothes.
    • Jake says hi to Madame Hoo, who doesn't speak much English. They make small talk about snow and China.
    • Angela goes to talk with Judge Ford and Sydelle, who both bring up her engagement to Dr. Deere. When Sydelle mentions twins, Judge Ford goes to talk to someone else.
    • Sydelle tells Angela she shouldn't let her mother bully her, and Angela walks away too. So Sydelle goes over to Theo and asks for another drink, with twins. Theo doesn't know what she's talking about, but calls her a game board.
    • Meanwhile, Judge Ford watches other people, and evaluates the two people who aren't playing the Westing game: Chris and Theo's parents, George and Catherine, who both look sad.
    • Chris looks at people's legs, trying to figure out who limps: Theo, because Turtle kicked him; and Grace, because of her high heels. He notes that Judge Ford doesn't limp. He thinks everyone there is too nice to be murderers.
    • George Theodorakis tries to talk to Mr. Hoo, but doesn't get anywhere. Judge Ford really wants to talk to him too.
    • Theo explains chess to Sydelle, which Judge Ford overhears. She realizes Theo thinks the Westing game is like chess.
    • Judge Ford buts in on Doug and Mr. Hoo's conversation, asking him how long he's had the restaurant.
    • Sydelle also interrupts, bringing up twins again.
    • Grace comes up to Angela and fixes her hair, saying they need to get her hair done and lecturing her about being weird like her partner Sydelle. Grace is saying that she'll have the Hoos cater the wedding shower when Angela runs off.
    • Angela runs into the kitchen. She wants to be alone, but Crow's there. Crow wants to comfort Angela but can't. Instead, she just gives her a towel to hold as Angela bursts into tears.
    • Meanwhile, Turtle's bored. She wishes Sandy was at the party.
    • Flora starts a bet about where that quotation in the will, "May God thy gold refine," is from: the Bible or Shakespeare.
    • Flora and Turtle collect answers. When Sydelle acts suspicious, Turtle realizes that she lost the copy of her notes.
    • To get Turtle to stop bothering her, Sydelle announces that she knows the entire quotation. She says it's "Spend it wisely and may God thy gold refine" (10.60).
    • People aren't that impressed, and the party ends.
  • Chapter 11

    The Meeting

    • The next day, people look out their windows at the Westing house and wonder if they should share clues at the coffee shop meeting. The snowstorm's still keeping them all inside.
    • Turtle waits alone in her room, but neither her mother nor her sister comes in to help her braid her hair, like they usually do.
    • She goes down to Flora's apartment and asks her to help her braid her hair.
    • Flora reveals she had a daughter named Rosalie, who was exceptional and loving.
    • Turtle says her mother doesn't think she's beautiful and says she looks like a turtle. When she asks Flora what happened to her daughter, Flora just says she's gone.
    • Flora asks Turtle her real name, which she says is Alice.
    • They go to the meeting, after Turtle reminds Flora to just listen, not talk.
    • Meanwhile, Theo takes Chris in the elevator to the meeting. A sign on the wall says Judge Ford's offering a reward for a missing gold watch.
    • Chris realizes that Judge Ford's name matches her address: 4D. Theo doesn't understand him, though.
    • At the coffee shop, Theo and Chris's parents provide snacks.
    • Grace and Mr. Hoo talk. Mr. Hoo insults the coffee shop and asks where Turtle is. When Grace says she's probably helping Jake with his bookkeeping, Mr. Hoo laughs. Grace doesn't understand but laughs too.
    • Sydelle thinks they're laughing at her and spills her coffee.
    • Theo calls the meeting to order, saying his clues don't add up to anything on their own. He thinks they should all combine their clues and then share the winnings equally.
    • When Sydelle asks about the clues in the will, Theo says they'd like to have a copy of it. Sydelle puts him off because she doesn't have it, but she's annoying about it. So Mr. Hoo hands it over.
    • Sydelle calls him a thief but he says he found it in the restaurant earlier that day, and that it's useless, because the shorthand doesn't make any sense.
    • Angela tries to calm her down, but Sydelle is upset. She says no one understands her and that she took her notes in Polish.
    • To get things back on track, Mr. Hoo says they should give Sydelle a little more of the winnings if she translates the will for everyone. He says he and Grace didn't kill anyone and have good alibis, and they'll share their clues.
    • This upsets Doug, because he was at the crime scene the night Sam Westing died.
    • Judge Ford says they should wait to decide whether to share their clues, and in the meantime they could just ask each other questions.
    • The players write down anonymous questions for Theo to read.
    • He asks if there are any twins (no); what Turtle's name is (Doug asked; it's not Alice, it's Tabitha-Ruth); and how many people have met Sam Westing (Mr. Hoo is the only one to answer, and even though it's Judge Ford's question, she doesn't respond).
    • Theo's about to read the next question—about who's been kicked recently (Chris's question)—when he is interrupted.
  • Chapter 12

    The First Bomb

    • There are sounds of explosions and yelling from the kitchen. Doug and Theo go in, and Catherine comes out, covered in red stuff. She asks for someone to phone the fire department. Angela runs to the phone but then doesn't do anything.
    • Theo comes out and says there's no fire, and then Catherine tells Chris not to worry: it's only tomato sauce.
    • Mr. Hoo seems kind of pleased at the damage, saying the cans must have exploded because of the heat.
    • George and Catherine think it was a bomb.
    • Doug says it wasn't, because he's worried they'll blame his father.
    • Judge Ford says to report it right away.
    • Grace says it's a great opportunity to redecorate and she could help.
    • Catherine says they'll have to close for a few days to tidy things, and Angela offers her assistance. Grace tells her she can't help—she has too much to do before the wedding.
    • Meanwhile, Angela and Sydelle go back to Sydelle's apartment and start transferring her copy of the will into English.
    • Turtle barges in, asking Angela for the newspaper she took.
    • After Angela gives it back, Turtle jokes maybe she took her clock, too, and tells her sister not to leave her ring lying around.
    • Sydelle jokes that Grace is the burglar, but she wouldn't take that. This makes Turtle crack up. But when Sydelle tells her to take her feet off the couch, Turtle shoots back that their mom thinks Angela took the book. Then she says Angela doesn't really want to marry Dr. Deere either.
    • When Sydelle and Angela try to talk with her about it, Turtle says she doesn't need a "crutch" like Sydelle for getting noticed, which really hurts Sydelle's feelings. Angela tries to pacify her, saying Turtle meant it metaphorically, and she and Turtle leave. Angela thinks Turtle relies too much on her braid.
    • Back at Judge Ford's, the newspaperman calls. He says George's name showed up as the boyfriend of Violet Westing at a party.
    • Judge Ford realizes four players are linked to Sam Westing: Mr. Hoo, George, Sandy (because he was let go from Westing's factory), and herself. She decides she should hire a private detective to learn more.
    • She looks up detectives in the yellow pages, when she sees something that makes her think. She dials the number and hears a voice that sounds exactly like another she's heard before.
  • Chapter 13

    The Second Bomb

    • The unnamed bomber, alone in the Hoos' restaurant kitchen, sets off a timed bomb where no one will be near it when it goes off, so no one will be injured. The bomber uses one of Turtle's candles to light the fuse.
    • Meanwhile, Grace puts up a sign in the elevator advertising the restaurant as she rides up to start working there as a hostess. Mr. Hoo pushes his wife from their apartment into the kitchen, and Doug's scolded when he accidentally comes in late to start working as a busboy.
    • Grace and Mr. Hoo commiserate about how hard it is to be parents.
    • With the exception of Catherine and George, all the players come up to the restaurant for dinner. Grace is giddy with power and sits people in unusual combinations.
    • She puts Chris with Sydelle, and they try to come up with their own private jokes.
    • Angela and Theo confide in each other; he's in awe of her. He says he won't be going to college, because his family needs to spend their money on his brother's health care. He wants to be a writer. Angela says maybe Dr. Deere can help, and then admits she wanted to be a doctor too... but her family doesn't have that much money either and her mother frowned on it.
    • When Theo asks her if she'd go back to school if they had the money, Angela doesn't say anything.
    • At another table, Judge Ford talks with Flora, asking her about her past. Flora says she used to have a wedding dress shop with her husband, and kept it going after he left. She talks about the dress she's making for Angela, saying she put lace on it she would've wanted to put on her own daughter's. She says Angela reminds her of Violet Westing.
    • Sydelle and Chris laugh together; he thinks she's unloved and self-centered.
    • Turtle sits alone at another table, listening to the stock report, which is not good. Grace drags Jake over to her table. He notices she calls Mr. Hoo "Jimmy." When Mr. Hoo comes to take their order, he asks Jake about a sports score. Turtle tells her father she knows about him being a bookie.
    • Sydelle asks Chris if he is totally paralyzed, which nobody ever does, and says he has a great alibi. She gets up to talk to the chef, and Angela gets up to help. Otis comes in, which means Sunset Towers is no longer snowed in, and the second bomb goes off.
    • Mr. Hoo goes into the kitchen while Grace tries to calm people down. He says someone should call an ambulance, and Madame Hoo and Angela try to help the injured Sydelle.
    • The paramedics come to take Sydelle to the hospital, and Angela isn't sure if she should go too. Grace tells her not to at first, but everybody else thinks she should.
    • A policeman says it was a gas explosion, as was the bomb the previous day, and that it wasn't that unusual for two to happen in those weather conditions. He encourages everyone to keep their rooms ventilated.
    • Grace takes extra care to keep their apartment aired, but, the narrator tells us, her apartment is where the next bomb will be set off.
  • Chapter 14

    Pairs Repaired

    • The tenants go outside at last. Angela looks under the hoods of all the cars, based on what Sydelle thought their clues might be, but doesn't see anything.
    • Next, Turtle and Flora take Flora's Chevy to a broker's office, where they spend several hours watching stocks. Since Flora's already forgotten how the stock market works, Turtle explains it to her. She doesn't say that they've already lost $1,350 on a stock called SEA.
    • Back at Sunset Towers, Sandy refuses a tip from Judge Ford for polishing her car, because she gave him the whole $10,000. She asks him about his family.
    • Sandy describes his family and explains he was injured from being a boxer.
    • Judge Ford says she tried to call him but couldn't find his number, and he explains that they couldn't afford it. She notices he's carrying a flask, but doesn't smell like alcohol.
    • Sandy tells her he has a theory about his clues. He thinks "skies" means "Sikes," "am" and "er" from "brother" mean Otis Amber; "shin" from "shining" could mean Mr. Hoo or Turtle; and "brother" could mean one of the Theodorakises. The judge says they're only looking for one person, though.
    • He tells the judge he doesn't want to share clues with the others. They agree that they need to do research on each of the players and find out who might be in danger from Westing's plan.
    • Meanwhile, Grace and Mr. Hoo are arguing about whether he should spend his money on advertising or not. Grace is just thinking he couldn't be the murderer when she overhears Otis and Crow arguing.
    • Otis yells that Crow lost their clues, and she says she remembers them. She thinks to herself that she has "hid[den] her love" in one of Angela's bags.
    • Otis worries that someone else might find their clues, and Grace tells him off and then asks Crow where she's going.
    • They fight over keeping the window open or closed, and Otis starts yelling "Boom!" every time he sees someone.
    • He spends his time making lots of deliveries to Sunset Towers, especially Westing Paper Products, and yelling "Boom!" at people. He thinks the whole thing is making Crow act weird.
    • Meanwhile, Dr. Deere pays a visit to Chris. He wants the money, and thinks Chris wants medical help, which he can't give. He can't even remember their clues. Chris has practiced what he wants to tell his partner over and over, and he lists their clues slowly. He thinks "grain" means Otis, and the combo of "for" and "shed" means she, Ford, and apartment 4D.
    • Dr. Deere says it's a good start, but Chris doesn't sign the check.
    • Downstairs, Angela waits for Denton. She doesn't know how to drive—her mother said she didn't have to learn and now she regrets that.
    • Theo comes by and says he found the whole quotation they were talking about the other day.
    • It's from "America the Beautiful." He reads it to her and then starts singing. He says it's probably not a clue, just patriotism.
    • Dr. Deere comes to get Angela. Theo asks him to play chess and is ignored. As Dr. Deere and Angela leave, Sandy whistles "America the Beautiful."
    • On the way to the hospital, Dr. Deere and Angela fight about why she's going to the hospital to visit Sydelle. Dr. Deere says Sydelle's crazy and made her whole disease up. He worries that Angela's stalling about the wedding.
    • Angela thinks she doesn't want to get married, but she doesn't know how to get out of it.
    • Waiting for Sydelle, she talks to another doctor, who says that Sydelle did make up her disease. Angela asks him if what Sydelle was doing was normal. The doctor condescends and says no one was hurt by it.
    • So, Angela goes in to see Sydelle. When Sydelle asks about the diagnosis, Angela lies and says that Sydelle has a disease that can't be cured. This cheers Sydelle up.
    • When Sydelle asks Angela for her makeup, Angela reaches into her bag and finds an anonymous letter that asks for forgiveness, encourages her love, and worries about enemies. It has two clues attached: "thy" and "beautiful."
  • Chapter 15

    Fact And Gossip

    • By that Friday, everyone's going about business at usual. Turtle, Theo, and Doug go to school; the coffee shop is busy and the Chinese restaurant empty; Judge Ford's back in court and Sandy's manning the front door; Flora takes Turtle to and from school.
    • Turtle and Flora are worried about their stocks; they're down $3,000. Turtle's confident in their stock choices, because she thinks Westing picked them, but Flora's not—she hasn't said anything about Chris's clue, "plain," but it doesn't match any stocks.
    • Later Turtle, Sandy, Doug, Theo, and Otis stand in the driveway looking at the Westing house. Turtle says the dead body she saw didn't look murdered—it looked at peace.
    • They theorize about what kinds of ways the murder could've happened—bee stings, poison, icicles, etc. Doug says maybe a doctor did it, which angers Turtle.
    • Doug says there was a mysterious person in the parking lot wearing red boots (Turtle's), calls her "Tabitha-Ruth," and pulls her hair before running inside. Sandy keeps her from going after him and kicking him.
    • Otis leaves, after saying Westing wasn't murdered, just crazy—that none of them are murderers.
    • Theo asks Sandy if anyone else left Sunset Towers on the night of the murder. Sandy says the only people he remembers doing that are Crow and Otis. Theo goes to check his clues.
    • Turtle asks Sandy to take her mind off the stock market and tell her another story.
    • Meanwhile, Jake goes to eat at Shin Hoo's, where he sees Grace for the first time in a while. He asks her why there are so many presents in their apartment.
    • Grace says they're for Angela's wedding shower the next day.
    • Mr. Hoo brings Jake's food and sits with them. Grace asks Jake for his opinion on the marketing campaign she wants to do for Mr. Hoo. She wants to call the restaurant "Hoo's on First." Jake thinks it's silly, and Hoo thinks it doesn't make any sense. When Jake says it sounds like a fine name, Mr. Hoo takes his food away.
    • The judge and Sandy start meeting to talk about their clue research. When Theo delivers their dinner one night, he asks Sandy if he knows how to play chess. Sandy says no.
    • The two decide to focus on the Westing family. There's no information on Mrs. Westing before she was Mrs. Westing. She's out of focus in all the pictures and it's hard to tell what she looks like.
    • Sandy says Mr. Hoo and Flora never met Mrs. Westing—Flora only met Violet and Violet's fiancé. He says he's the only one who knew her.
    • Sandy says Mrs. Westing was blonde with a full mouth. Judge Ford remembers a redhead with a thin mouth, then tells herself it was a long time ago.
    • They research Westing's daughter. She was engaged to a senator, but went out with George. She does look like Angela.
    • Sandy says that it's weird Angela looks like Violet and Theo looks like George, since Violet really wanted to marry George but couldn't.
    • When Judge Ford asks Sandy if Angela and Theo are involved, Sandy says no—then adds if events were repeating themselves, it would mean Angela would die too.
  • Chapter 16

    The Third Bomb

    • At Angela's wedding shower, Otis keeps delivering gifts and saying "Boom!" Everyone is eating and drinking from Westing paper products and Madame Hoo's serving, wearing a silly serving gown.
    • Grace says it's time to open presents. Angela finds herself the center of attention, surrounded by her mother's friends and none of her own. She thinks Turtle's fortunate because she's not the favorite child.
    • She gets two asparagus cookers and an egg poacher; then she checks the time and picks up a thin carton with gold wrapping.
    • People remark her hands are shaking.
    • Angela unwraps the gift so slowly that Turtle gets impatient and reaches down to see what it is. Angela shouts out, "Get away" and shoves Turtle aside as the gift explodes in rockets and bangs.
    • When the dust settles, Grace asks if anyone's hurt. Everyone's fine except for Angela, who has burned hands and blood on her face.
    • Downstairs the tenants meet with a police captain Judge Ford called. They know among them are a murderer, a bomber, and a thief. But they don't know who's who.
    • Otis thinks Mr. Hoo could be the killer.
    • Mr. Hoo thinks Flora can't be trusted.
    • The captain says that they don't have enough evidence to do a search.
    • Jake thinks Sandy's not the bomber, because he wasn't there during the first two bombs, but he clearly dislikes Mr. Westing.
    • Chris thinks it wasn't Sandy or Judge Ford.
    • Flora thinks Theo and Doug are nice boys, but that doesn't mean either of them couldn't be a killer.
    • Theo says to Chris it could be Crow, but then they disagree about whether she was in the building for the other bombs.
    • The captain says it was a time bomb and that no one would've been hurt if Angela hadn't been holding it towards herself.
    • The judge thinks Grace is unhappy, but she wouldn't have bombed her daughter.
    • Grace thinks Otis could be the bomber, because he delivered the presents, but he wasn't there for the first bomb.
    • No one suspects Chris or Angela—except for maybe Otis, who gets kicked by Turtle.
    • At the hospital, Angela's sharing a room with Sydelle. Her parents tell her that everything's going to be fine. Turtle waits behind after her parents leave and thanks Angela. She says she brought her bag for her (she took out something she found inside), and says that Angela's hands will heal, but she'll have a scar on her face.
    • Turtle reminds Angela that she's always said it was about the inner person, not outer beauty—Angela wonders if she was right.
    • Turtle tells her it was a stupid thing to do, and Sydelle realizes that Angela was the bomber.
  • Chapter 17

    Some Solutions

    • That Monday, the stock goes down even further. Everyone's nervous—the bomb squad gets called a few extra times because of a vacuum cleaner bag, a box of chocolates, and because Turtle yells for Flora, "Mrs. Baumbach," which sounds like "bomb."
    • Grace doesn't seem to trust Jake because he's sending her flowers and candy.
    • Flora's only learned two stock market words: "bullish" and "bearish."
    • Madame Hoo's learning many English words from Jake, who teaches her before having lunch at Shin Hoo's.
    • Today, he helps Mr. Hoo and Grace with their clues. He puts "purple fruited" in order, which makes Grace think of plums, and the lawyer Ed Plum. Mr. Hoo tears "fruited" in half and gets "Ed Purple-fruit." They think they've solved it, ignoring Jake's question about their other three clues.
    • Meanwhile, Sandy's keeping a notebook with all the information he and Judge Ford gather on the other players. They're finished up with the Westings and are moving on to the heirs.
    • Sandy shares what he knows about the Hoos: Mr. Hoo has been married twice, Madame Hoo recently immigrated, and Doug is great at running track. Their connection is that Mr. Hoo took Westing to court over the disposable paper diaper, which was settled, and now he's working on paper insoles.
    • Sandy says he asked Mr. Hoo to come up with those insoles, and they really work.
    • Theo's downstairs working on his chemistry homework, which makes him think of solutions for the will. He puts his clues into a solution and comes up with "NH4NO3," which he thinks is an explosive, with "Otis" left over. He runs out to tell Doug, but he's so excited he grabs what turns out to be the wrong bathrobe. He knocks on Crow's door by mistake, and she drags him into her place so they can both pray for being sinners. He thinks she gave him something but can't find it later.
  • Chapter 18

    The Trackers

    • Flora braids Turtle's hair in the mornings, as Turtle reads from the Wall Street Journal. One day, Turtle reads that Julian Eastman, Westing Paper Products Chairman, says their earnings will double.
    • She tells Flora to sell their other stocks and buy all WPP stock. Flora calls her "Alice" and agrees. Turtle says she should call Flora something besides "Mrs. Baumbach" and asks if she could say "Mrs. Baba." Flora says, just call her "Baba."
    • Turtle asks if Flora's daughter Rosalie was smart, and Flora says Turtle's the smartest kid she's known. Turtle jealously says Rosalie was probably all domestic. Flora falters and says Rosalie was extraordinary and loving.
    • Turtle gets mad and says they should get going.
    • Upstairs, Sandy's taking notes on the players. He's on Flora, who had a developmentally disabled daughter, Rosalie, who died the previous year. Flora's Westing connection is the wedding dress she made for Violet.
    • He starts looking at the information on Otis, which makes him laugh.
    • Meanwhile, Theo catches up with Doug. He starts to ask about Crow and then stops; he tells Doug he figured out that their clues mean ammonium nitrate. Doug doesn't really pay attention, because he's focused on the next weekend's track match. Theo says they're partners, and he wants Doug to follow Otis.
    • Flora's watching the stock points and she see WPP start to rise, and rise.
    • Later that day, Doug follows Otis instead of going to track practice. He follows him to Sunset Towers, where Doug chats with Sandy, and then to Ed Plum's house, and then to the hospital. Then he follows him to a stockbroker's, back to high school, and back to Sunset Towers. There, Otis finds him and gives him a letter from Plum. It says everyone has to go back to the Westing house that Saturday night.
    • Doug, totally worn out, signs his name and "miler" (18.41).
    • Since this meeting's coming, Judge Ford steps up her investigation. She and Sandy discuss more of the tenants. Otis has a low IQ and is connected to Westing because he delivered the letters from Plum. Dr. Deere is an intern in plastic surgery and is connected to Westing because he's engaged to Angela, who looks like Violet. Sydelle is a secretary for Shultz Sausages, but he can't find her connection to the Westings. The judge thinks it's weird, that Sydelle doesn't match.
    • At the hospital, the plastic surgeon checks on Angela, saying she should have an operation in two months. Dr. Deere says she shouldn't worry, he's the best. Angela thinks they should postpone the wedding, but doesn't say what she really wants.
    • Turtle runs in and Dr. Deere pulls her by the braid, saying no visitors. She kicks him hard, and he sends up people to escort her out.
    • Turtle asks Angela what she signed under "position"—Angela says "person" and Sydelle says "victim" – then she says that Angela shouldn't say anything to anyone before running out.
    • Ed Plum comes in to ask Angela how she is. Grace comes in right after, sees him, and starts screaming—because she thinks he's the murderer.
    • Back at Sunset Towers, Chris has three visitors. Otis brings him a letter to sign. Flora comes up and tells him about Rosalie. He knows she's sad. He wonders who he could've been if he wasn't in a wheelchair.
    • The third visitor, Dr. Deere, is limping, which makes Chris excited. Chris tells him Flora shared one of their clues, "mountain," but that they shouldn't tell Turtle.
    • Dr. Deere says the clues aren't as important as something else: he wants Chris to come with him to the hospital.
    • Chris can't say that he wants a friend, not a doctor. But Dr. Deere says there's no operation, he's just found an experimental treatment and he wants him to think about it.
    • Chris believes they're really partners, and says Dr. Deere can have the money, but the doctor isn't thinking about that. He takes Chris to the hospital, and Chris thinks it's the best time he's had in a while.
  • Chapter 19

    Odd Relatives

    • On Thursday, Flora and Turtle are trying to follow the stock market. The price of WPP is rising. Turtle keeps getting in trouble at school because she's listening to the radio to follow stocks. She tries to blame it on a toothache, but the teachers don't believe her. Every thirty minutes she takes a bathroom break to tune in, while Flora follows from the stockbrokers.
    • At Sunset Towers, Crow cleans the Wexlers' apartment, while thinking about how she doesn't want to go to the Westing house—it's too painful—but Otis thinks she should.
    • Otis makes a delivery to the apartment and tells Crow he thinks Mr. Hoo might be the bomber, because his restaurant competes with the coffee shop. He could have diverted attention by bombing his restaurant, and he catered the wedding shower.
    • Crow gets furious and thinks about vengeance, since Angela will be scarred for life.
    • Upstairs, the judge and Sandy discuss Crow. Her full name is Berthe Erica Crow, and she's divorced from Windy Windkloppel. They don't know what her Westing connection is.
    • Meanwhile, in the Chinese restaurant, Jake, Grace, and Hoo see Crow come in. She limps to their table and Madame Hoo brings out some lunch.
    • Grace wonders if something's going on between her and Jake.
    • Mr. Hoo suggests that Crow should try his paper insoles, since her feet hurt, for free. Crow is so pleased with the insoles that she leaves without paying, and thinks anyone who could create those couldn't be the bomber.
    • At the hospital, a nurse brings Chris to Sydelle and Angela's room. He's brought Angela what he thinks was a letter Theo was too shy to give her, which he found in his bathrobe. The nurse takes Chris away, but first he tells her "mountain," Turtle's clue.
    • Angela reads the letter, which isn't from Theo, but which says that someone's love should be taken away before things go too far. The letter also has two clues, "with" and "majesties."
    • She tells Sydelle that Otis and Crow's clues are not "king" and "queen," but "with thy beautiful majesties."
    • Back at Sunset Towers, Sandy and Judge Ford are still researching the Wexlers. Jake is a podiatrist, Grace's maiden name is Windkloppel, their daughters are Turtle and Angela. Their link to the Westings is that Grace says Sam Westing was her uncle, and she and Angela both look like Violet.
    • Sandy says that Jake was also a bookie, and Judge Ford gets mad and says that Sam Westing wasn't exactly the cleanest living man, even if he didn't drink or smoke.
    • Sandy gets embarrassed and drinks from his flask.
    • The judge realizes that Grace must be related to Crow, since they are both connected to the Windkloppels.
    • They look back over their information on Crow, and come back across an interview with one of Crow's friends. The friend describes Crow as a pretty redhead, and the friend is named Sybil Pulaski.
    • The judge realizes Sam Westing made a mistake: he wanted Sybil Pulaski and he got Sydelle. He didn't know everything.
  • Chapter 20

    Confessions

    • That Friday, Turtle cuts classes and goes with Flora to the stockbrokers. That afternoon their stock is up to $52 a share, and they decide to sell.
    • Doug's cutting class too, to follow Otis. They go between the shopping center and Sunset Towers, and then to a rooming house. Otis doesn't come out for hours, and then he goes back to Sunset Towers. Doug's been jogging the whole time, and is grateful for his father's paper insoles, which really seem to work.
    • At the hospital, Theo's being bandaged after accidentally causing an explosion in the chemistry lab. The bomb squad detective wonders if he set the bomb in his parents' restaurant. Theo denies it, plus he has an alibi for the third bombing. So he gets off with a warning.
    • George delivers food to the judge's apartment, and she asks him about his past with Violet Westing.
    • George says they went out when they were kids and wanted to get married, but that her mother came between them.
    • The judge realizes that Sam Westing hadn't pushed Violet to marry the senator; her mother had. George says Violet didn't know what else to do, because she didn't want to marry the senator, and that's probably why she killed herself. Then her mother went crazy.
    • The judge thanks him, and Sandy finishes up their research on the Theodorakis family. Theo wants to be a writer and plays chess; Chris is a birdwatcher with a complicated disease. Their father is Violet's ex-boyfriend, but he and his wife aren't players in the game.
    • Sandy says that the new medicine Dr. Deere suggested is working great for Chris, but that what he really needs is money. He's smart enough to really make something of himself, but his parents don't have enough money for his education.
    • The two can't figure out why the parents aren't playing the game, and the judge brings them back to trying to decide which player Westing was gunning for. They decide that it's probably Mr. Westing's ex-wife, and that she has got to be hidden amongst the players—and that they need to protect her.
  • Chapter 21

    The Fourth Bomb

    • Turtle and Flora are counting up their stock money in Flora's apartment when Theo barges in and asks Turtle if he can borrow her bike (so he can follow Otis).
    • When Turtle hesitates it, he says he didn't write that sign about her, and threatens that he didn't say anything about who the bomber was to the police. He means that Turtle's the bomber.
    • He also works the nice angle, saying he saw Angela that day.
    • Turtle thinks Theo meant Angela was the bomber, and he lets him take the bike.
    • She tries to call Angela at the hospital, but no one picks up. She's worried Angela will confess to the bombings if people press her.
    • On the bike, Theo follows Crow and Otis downtown, where they go to the Good Salvation Soup Kitchen. Theo looks in the window and sees them feeding soup to the poor and homeless. He rushes back to Sunset Towers, feeling ashamed and gross for spying on them, and mad at San Westing for making him play the game.
    • Back at Sunset Towers, the judge and Sandy are almost finished with their research, but they still have to go over their own cases. Sandy's notes on himself say he has six kids, two grandkids, and that he dropped out of school after eighth grade. His link to the Westings is that he worked for the factory for twenty years before being fired.
    • Then, Sandy interviews Judge Ford. She thinks about how she kept some facts about the other players secret, because she doesn't totally trust him to keep his mouth shut, and then tells him about herself. She has an Ivy League education and is linked to the Westings because her parents were the Westings' servants.
    • Sandy's surprised. The judge says she used to play chess with Sam Westing. In their last game, she thought she'd won... until she realized he gave up his queen on purpose, and tricked her.
    • At twelve, she went to boarding school, and Sam Westing paid for her whole education. She thinks she owes Westing, and she'll never be able to pay him back.
    • Theo, upset, is waiting for the elevator. But when it comes, a series of rockets and explosions shoot out. Then it goes back up to the third floor, where another explosion occurs... because the bomber miscalculated.
    • When the bomb squad comes, Turtle is on the floor crying. Grace asks her where it hurts, but Turtle's mostly upset that her braid has been burned off.
    • Grace yells at the bomb squad, and the policeman show evidence: a sign saying "The bomber strikes again!" written on the back of one of Turtle's homework assignments.
    • When Grace asks Turtle if someone stole that from her, she just demands a lawyer.
    • Instead of taking Turtle to jail, the bomb squad takes her upstairs to Judge Ford.
    • Judge Ford scolds Turtle and asks her why she set off the bombs. The judge realizes she's protecting someone, and asks if it's Angela. Turtle denies this too strongly.
    • This surprises the judge, who thinks of Angela as a "sweet, pretty thing." Then, the judge pauses to think about how she hasn't taken Angela seriously, because of her beauty. She thinks she would've responded differently to the situation.
    • The judge asks Turtle to promise not to set off any more fireworks, and then asks her if she has any other confessions.
    • Turtle admits she was at the murder scene the night of the crime, and the judge asks her to tell her about it. When Turtle says Mr. Westing's body looked more like a wax figure than a dead body, the judge gets excited. Turtle also realizes that maybe there wasn't really a dead body.
    • Turtle asks for a little bourbon to put on her toothache, and the judge sends her home.
    • Turtle takes this to mean she should go to Flora's and she's on her way there when she runs into Sandy.
    • He smells the bourbon and Turtle explains it's for her tooth. He thinks she's got a terrible cavity, so he tells her to go to his dentist, who's super-nice. Then, he asks her if she has any more striped candles, so he can give one to his wife for her birthday.
    • Turtle says she'll sell him the last one for only $5.
    • Back at the hospital, Angela and Sydelle are working on their clues again, after going back through the will twice and putting up a sign for privacy. Angela puts them in this order: "grains spacious grace good hood with beautiful majesties from thy purple waves on(no) mountain."
    • Sydelle says to read them again in a different order, with either "on" or "no," not both.
    • Angela shuffles and reads: "good spacious grains with grace on thy purple mountain hood waves from majesties beautiful."
    • Someone slides a note under the door. It's from Dr. Deere and it says that it seems like Angela needs some time and space. He says he'll wait and he loves her. Angela only tells Sydelle what the P.S. says, which is that Chris wants to share another clue, "plain."
    • Sydelle connects plains and grains, and asks Angela to read the clues one more time.
    • Angela reads: "good hood from spacious plain grains on with beautiful waves grace thy purple mountain majesties."
    • Animatedly, Sydelle says they've figured it out. She quotes two other parts of the will: "Sing in praise of this generous land," and "May God thy gold refine." She cries out, "America!" and flings her crutches in the air.
  • Chapter 22

    Losers, Winners

    • Turtle posts a sign in the elevator saying that she is the bomber, but not the burglar or the murderer, and that she'll treat everyone to Chinese dinner when she wins the game.
    • Mr. Hoo says Grace has trouble with her kids, and he's glad to have Doug. Madame Hoo just says "Boom." She's excited that they're going to go to watch Doug race. She thinks about how she won't ever take his medals, or sell the clock with the mouse on it, even if it will take longer to save up to go back to China.
    • Meanwhile, Grace is too embarrassed to go to the players' meeting and Jake has to convince her to go. They fight about how they've brought up their children and what they've become. Jake asks what happened to Gracie Windkloppel, and Grace basically says he's not a proper doctor. Jake calls himself a loser.
    • Grace begins to cry and they go back to their apartment, where they meet Turtle and Flora leaving. Turtle asks what's wrong and thinks to herself that it would be even worse if Grace knew who the bomber actually was.
    • Jake tells them to have fun at the track meet, which isn't where they're going.
    • Inside the apartment, Jake asks Angela and Sydelle to leave so Grace can have some privacy. Angela realizes her parents aren't bugging her or checking on her—she's alone.
    • She laughs, and then decides everything's okay.
    • Sydelle thinks things are great, and they're going to win. Angela thinks they might not, because they have a song instead of a name.
    • Sydelle sings "purple waves of grain," and Angela says it's not purple, it's amber waves.
    • Meanwhile, Judge Ford is worried about the revenge on Mrs. Westing. Dr. Deere and Chris show up, and Dr. Deere asks her to hang out with Chris for the afternoon.
    • The medicine is helping Chris a lot, and he can talk without stuttering as much. Dr. Deere leaves to go back to the hospital.
    • Chris says he'll birdwatch while the judge does her research. The judge realizes that the only possible player who could be Mrs. Westing is Crow.
    • Chris shows the judge a flock of geese flying, which makes her drop her papers. When she picks them up, she realizes that the wax figure looked like a picture of Westing from fifteen years ago, so no one knows what he looks like now. She realizes Westing must be in disguise.
    • Meanwhile, Turtle tries to relax at the dentist's. She distracts herself by thinking about how she kicked Barney Northrup hard when he stopped by her family's apartment that morning. She's worried about having her hair cut off.
    • At the track meet, Doug wins the mile run. Mr. Hoo is super-proud, and thinks his inner soles are going to be a hit. Madame Hoo wants Doug to wear his medal to the meeting that night.
    • Back at Judge Ford's apartment, Sandy is sad, and says that he ran into Barney Northrup, who fired him. He says he asked Barney to talk to the judge, because she might be a good reference, but the judge says he never called. She wonders if Barney is Westing in disguise.
    • Sandy asks Chris about bird watching, and then pulls the judge aside. The two decide they just have to protect Mrs. Westing, who they think is Crow. Sandy also says he thinks Otis has been lying about who he really is, and he thinks Otis is actually Westing.
    • Over at the Westing house, Crow and Otis arrive early for the meeting. She says she's worried that something bad might happen, and that she might be in danger. Otis doesn't believe her and says it sounds like she's been drinking again—and then he apologizes.
  • Chapter 23

    Strange Answers

    • When Otis comes in, he sees Plum, Flora, and Turtle. Otis makes fun of Turtle's haircut, which Flora thinks is pretty. Turtle doesn't like it.
    • Flora shows Turtle a picture of Rosalie. When Turtle looks at it closely, she sees that Rosalie was disabled and says she looks like she was happy and nice.
    • Sydelle and Angela arrive; Turtle's made sure Angela won't confess about the bombings.
    • As the players come in, they all talk about Turtle's hair: Angela likes it, Sandy thinks it's businesslike, Dr. Deere thinks it's improved, Chris thinks it looks nice. Theo doesn't notice because he's looking at the chessboard, where someone else has made a play.
    • Judge Ford comes in dressed in African robes and gives a note to Dr. Deere.
    • Doug comes in, still pleased with his win from the match, followed by the Hoos.
    • Jake and Grace arrive from a wine bar, a little tipsy. Crow sneaks in after them.
    • Otis asks if each team can open the envelope on their table. Plum says yes. They each receive another $10,000 check.
    • The judge gives her share of the money to Sandy, who Sydelle shushes, and Grace falls asleep.
    • Plum keeps reading the will. Part twelve welcomes everyone back and says that they've all gotten some money, and by the end someone may get a lot more. It says each table will be called to give their answer. Plum will write them all down, but doesn't know what the answer is.
    • At table one are Madame Hoo, "cook," and Jake Wexler, "bookie" (23.31). Jake looks back over their clues: "of America and God above." He doesn't know what to say so he asks Madame Hoo, who says "Boom!"
    • Table two is Flora Baumbach, "dressmaker," and Turtle Wexler, "financier" (23.37). Turtle says they've made $11,587.50 from their original $10,000 on the stock market.
    • At table three are Christos Theodorakis, "ornithologist," and Denton Deere, "intern" (23.43). Chris doesn't want to blame anybody, and he thinks all the partners helped everyone make friends, so he and Denton agree that their answer is Westing was a good person.
    • Table four's Judge Ford, "judge" (23.47), and Sandy, "fired" (23.47), who say they don't have an answer. Judge Ford looks at Dr. Deere, who shakes his head no in response to her note, which asked if Otis had plastic surgery. So Otis isn't Westing, but she thinks Crow knows something is up.
    • At table five are Gracie Windkloppel Wexler, "restaurateur," and James Hoo, "inventor" (23.50). Mr. Hoo pushes Grace to stand and answer, and she drunkenly says their restaurant will reopen the next day, serving purple waves. When she sits down, she falls on the floor. Mr. Hoo says their answer is "Ed Plum."
    • Table six has Berthe Erica Crow, "mother," and Otis Amber, "deliverer" (23.60). Crow's surprised to find she wrote "mother," and Otis asks her what their answer is. Crow says "mother" again.
    • At table seven of Douglas Hoo, "champ," and Theo Theodorakis, "writer" (23.65), Theo doesn't know what to do with their clues. His ideas point to Otis, but he thinks about what he viewed at the soup kitchen and says "no answer."
    • Table eight are Sydelle Pulaski, "victim," and Angela Wexler, "person" (23.67). Sydelle stands and begins to sing "America the Beautiful."
    • Everyone thinks she's nuts until they start hearing all their clues in the words of the song. They think Sydelle and Angela won. Sydelle says their answer is "Otis Amber."
    • Plum reads the next part of the will, that says it's time for a break and asks Crow to go to the kitchen to get snacks.
    • Judge Ford asks Sandy to go with her; as he does, he asks her to refill his flask. Angela follows them, worried about Crow, and Turtle follows her, worried about Angela.
    • Otis makes machine gun sounds at everyone. Crow, Angela, and Turtle come back in with the snacks, followed by Sandy.
    • The judge goes over to Dr. Deere, who says that no one there's had plastic surgery, although Sandy could've benefited.
    • Sandy drinks from his flask as the judge says they've got to stay aware for the final move.
    • Theo's at the chess table and thinks he won. He takes the other side's queen.
    • Sydelle and Angela ask Plum what the answer is. He says he's got to open the next document. Part fourteen says everyone should go to the library right away.
  • Chapter 24

    Wrong All Wrong

    • The players and Plum all go to the library, where he reads instructions, and opens a locked drawer to find the next part.
    • Part fifteen says all their answers are wrong, and the partnerships are dissolved. It also says Plum will leave and come back with the police, and they'd better find out the name before there's another murder. It repeats that what you are missing matters more than what you have.
    • Madame Hoo knows something's up, and worries she'll be found out for taking all those things.
    • Everyone gets worried; they don't know how much time they have, and Dr. Deere thinks they're paranoid.
    • Sandy pauses to tell Turtle that the game's still on, and that she might still take it.
    • Theo pulls everyone together and says they should share their clues. Sydelle wonders if anyone has a clue that isn't in the song.
    • Jake quotes the will, saying "It is not what you have, it's what you don't have that counts" (24.21), and says maybe there are words missing from the song in their clues.
    • Mr. Hoo asks if "amber" is missing, and Otis says it doesn't matter, because he was a wrong answer.
    • The players figure out that "amber" is missing, although they have "am." They don't know what the "am" stands for.
    • Sandy takes charge and says everyone should give their clues to Sydelle, so she can arrange them. This confuses Judge Ford, who doesn't get why Sandy would do that when he knows the answer is Crow. She looks at him and remembers what Chris said about everyone getting the right partner. She realizes that he's the one person she didn't do research on, and that he must be Sam Westing.
    • Sydelle puts the clues in order and says the missing parts are "ber," "the," "erica," and "crow," which spells out Crow's full name.
    • Judge Ford leaps to her defense, saying that just because Crow's name is the answer to the puzzle doesn't mean she killed anyone, or even that Westing was killed. She says they shouldn't sacrifice Crow to their own greed.
    • She's about to reveal Sandy when he chokes, turns red, and falls to the floor. Jake and Dr. Deere move to help, while Theo calls for help. Plum and two other men come in. One of them is Dr. Sikes, the other's a sheriff.
    • Turtle calls out for Sandy and then looks down at him as he spasms and then is still.
    • Dr. Sikes says he's dead, and the judge realizes she must have made a mistake.
    • The players return to the game room. Plum has to read another part of the will.
    • The sheriff thinks the whole thing is weird, especially because he was called in thirty minutes before anyone died.
    • Plum reads part sixteen, which says that Westing was originally named Sam Windkloppel and that someone better claim the prize in the next five minutes. It says happy Fourth of July.
    • Everyone sits and thinks about how they could get the money if they said Crow's name, but no one's sure she's really a murderer.
    • After four minutes, Crow says her name is the answer. Angela and Otis protest, but she repeats that her name is the answer. She says she's also the winner, and she wants to divide her winnings between Angela and the soup kitchen.
  • Chapter 25

    Westing's Wake

    • The players confer in Judge Ford's apartment.
    • They say Crow has confessed, but only to being herself, not to any murders. Everyone feels sorry for Crow, and for Sandy.
    • Turtle says Sandy was her friend, and Dr. Deere says she shouldn't have kicked him. Turtle says she never did—she only kicked Barney Northrup. She thinks about how Sandy looked dying, twitching, with one eye blinking, kind of like how he'd wink at her sometimes.
    • Theo says he didn't realize it, but he was playing chess with Sandy in the game room the whole time. Turtle thinks this is a lie because Sandy didn't know how to play chess.
    • Theo says Doug saw him playing, and mentions he won their last game. The judge asks him how he knows, and Theo says he took the queen.
    • The judge realizes it's a total Westing move, and says that Theo would have lost. Theo realizes she's right.
    • Turtle thinks about how Sandy beat Theo, except he didn't know how to play chess, and how she didn't kick him, except he had a sore shin. She thinks about the dentist he sent her to, and how he told her the game wasn't over, and had winked at her.
    • Turtle jumps up and asks Angela to look at her copy of the will.
    • Turtle reads the will aloud to everyone. In part one she repeats that Westing came to seek his heir and said his body will be scattered to the winds.
    • Grace really was related to Westing.
    • Judge Ford explains the Westing family tree, and says the game might've been for getting revenge on Crow.
    • Turtle rereads the second and third parts. Otis says that Crow won't win any money, and that she's been sacrificed.
    • This makes the judge think of chess, and she figures out that Crow is the queen's sacrifice, which means Westing won. She calls herself stupid.
    • Dr. Deere says Westing's the stupid one, saying happy Fourth of July in the will, when it's November.
    • Otis says that it's Crow's birthday, which makes Turtle remember that Sandy had asked for that candle for his wife's birthday. She realizes the game isn't over, and that Sandy was rooting for her. She thinks, again, "It is not what you have, it's what you don't have that counts" (25.62). She has to figure out what happened before anyone else does. She decides to hold a trial.
  • Chapter 26

    Turtle's Trial

    • Judge Ford holds court, with Turtle as lawyer and Sydelle as court reporter. She thinks Turtle appears and behaves like Westing himself.
    • Turtle argues that Westing and Sandy are dead, but not because of Crow. She imitates lawyers on TV. She recaps that they saw smoke from the Westing house on Halloween night, and calls on Chris.
    • She asks him if he was bird watching that night and whom he saw. He says he was, and he saw someone limping: Dr. Sikes. Turtle says what Sikes was doing there is their next question.
    • Next is Otis Amber. The judge asks him to give her his gun, which he does. Turtle says many of them are in disguise, so who is he? Otis says he's a PI, and was in disguise as a delivery boy.
    • He says he was employed by Sam Westing, Barney Northrup, and Judge Ford.
    • Turtle asks him what he was supposed to look up. He says for twenty years he's been looking after Crow and keeping her out of trouble and from saying she's a Westing. He was employed to do that until last week.
    • Barney hired him to look into six people: Judge Ford, George, Mr. Hoo, Gracie Windkloppel, Flora, and Sybil Pulaski. He made a mistake and looked up Sydelle instead.
    • He tells the judge he couldn't reveal Crow's connection to Westing, because Westing had paid him to keep that secret. He wasn't supposed to look into Dr. Deere, Crow, or Sandy. He researched everybody except Judge Ford and Sandy. He never investigated Sandy for anyone.
    • Grace interrupts, saying she saw a dead man. When Turtle asks her who, Madame Hoo gets worried and runs out.
    • Otis reveals Sandy told him the scary dead guy story, and they used it to dare Turtle in the house, where she found the body of Westing.
    • Next, Turtle interviews Dr. Deere. She gets him to admit that he's not sure whether the body was poisoned, embalmed, or even a dead body—it could've been a wax figure.
    • He says Sandy wasn't dead yet when Sikes arrived, and he probably had a heart attack.
    • Turtle says that couldn't have been brought on by what Crow put in his flask: lemon juice.
    • Dr. Deere says Sandy definitely had a big bruise on his shin.
    • Next is Sydelle. Turtle says she did a good job on the will, except that the last word of Chapter Three is missing. Sydelle can't remember what the last word was. Judge Ford says Sandy made a joke then and nobody heard it.
    • Turtle realizes maybe there was never a word there.
    • She rereads parts four and five, and asks Judge Ford to show the letter Plum gave her. The judge reaches for a letter of sanity and instead finds a receipt, which says that she no longer owes Westing money for her education.
    • They're interrupted by Madame Hoo, who says that she took things so she could go to China, and who starts to cry. She brings in all the missing things except Grace's cross. Everyone except Flora thinks it's stealing. Turtle gives her back the clock to keep.
    • At the end of the "trial," Turtle's almost to the solution, but not there yet. She says that Westing was many people, and still alive when the will was read. She says he was disguised as one of the players: Sandy. She says Sandy kept medicine, not alcohol, in his flask.
    • When the second part of the will was read, Turtle says, she saw Sandy coming out of the library. That means he finished writing the will after they offered their solutions to the first part. There was no murder, but the will wasn't a lie: Westing's life was taken by Sandy when he switched identities.
    • The judge wonders why Turtle doesn't say that Westing was also Barney Northrup.
    • Turtle wonders why Westing was at least two people, then realizes it was three: Westing, Northrup, and Sandy.
    • The judge asks if Sandy committed suicide, but Turtle's not listening; she's looking at the will.
    • With no missing word, part three reads, "The heir who wins the windfall will be the one who finds the… FOURTH" (26.93). Turtle realizes Westing was four people, and she knows who the fourth one is. She decides to keep it to herself and asks the judge to repeat the question.
    • The judge realizes Turtle has information no one else does.
    • Turtle says Sandy didn't commit suicide, it was just his time to die. She's telling everyone to take a moment of silence for Sandy, when Crow and Plum come in.
  • Chapter 27

    A Happy Fourth

    • Otis welcomes Crow, who says she was declared innocent. Angela smiles at her.
    • Plum explains it was a mistake, and that Sandy died of a heart attack. He says he's resigning, and Judge Ford asks him for the last part of the will.
    • The will ends with three parts. Part seventeen says goodbye, and that he liked being the doorman. Part eighteen says he gives everyone equal parts of Sunset Towers, and the $30,000 left over from playing the game. Part nineteen says happy birthday to Crow and happy Fourth of July again.
    • There's no mention of the two hundred million, so Judge Ford thinks that means they lost the game.
    • Turtle thinks that she'd better hurry, and that the timed candle's almost out.
    • Other heirs grumble and Flora scolds them, saying everyone's $10,000 richer than they were before, plus they all own part of Sunset Towers.
    • They're interrupted by a series of booms, as fireworks go off over the Westing house, which catches on fire and burns.
    • Late that evening, Turtle goes to get her prize. She thinks, again, that, "The heir who wins the windfall will be the one who finds the fourth" (27.35), connecting the directions (north, south, west) in Westing's aliases, and heads for an address on Sunrise Lane.
    • She arrives at the home of the Westing Paper Products Corp. chairman, and meets Dr. Sikes. She tells him she's there to see Mr. Eastman, and he sends her inside.
    • When she gets to the library, she sees Julian Eastman, who limps towards her. He has blue eyes and a smile.
    • Turtle says, "Hi, Sandy," and tells him she's won the game.
  • Chapter 28

    And Then…

    • Turtle keeps Sandy's secret, and meets him (as Mr. Eastman) once a week to play chess.
    • She attends a wedding in the Chinese restaurant, with Mr. Hoo as best man and her sister as bridesmaid. It's Crow and Otis's wedding, and everyone toasts them.
    • Judge Ford moves out of the building—she's going to sell her apartment to pay for somebody else's education, and repay her debt to Westing again.
    • She says goodbye to Chris, whose education she's going to pay for.
    • Mr. Hoo's insoles are selling really well, and he tells his wife she's going to take her to China soon. Madame Hoo speaks better and better English, and she's starting to make friends.
    • Sydelle goes back to work at her old job, with the status of heiress. Her boss, Mr. Schultz, asks her out to lunch.
    • Jake is now working for the government lottery, while Grace manages Hoo's on First, which is doing really well. She's proud of herself, and Turtle.
    • Angela will always have a scar, but she's gone back to college and is prepping for med school. She's broken up with Dr. Deere and studies all the time. Turtle's still following the stock market.
    • Otis and Amber expand their soup kitchen with the inheritance money.
  • Chapter 29

    Five Years Pass

    • Five years later, the players gather to celebrate Doug's Olympic medal. Otis and Crow thank Mr. Hoo for his innersole donation to the soup kitchen. His business is doing really well, although he hasn't gone to China yet.
    • Theo's finished journalism school and is a reporter, while Doug's considered a hero.
    • Madame Hoo speaks great English and calls herself "Sunny."
    • Angela and Dr. Deere meet again; neither one's attached. He's a neurologist and she's in med school.
    • Sydelle arrives with her fiancé, Mr. Schultz.
    • Chris introduces Judge Ford to his girlfriend Shirley. He and Shirley are studying bird watching, while the judge has made it to the Circuit Court of Appeals.
    • Grace is doing the catering for the party, even though she runs five restaurants, including Hoo's on First. Theo asks who the pretty girl talking to Flora is, and Grace says it's Turtle, who everyone calls T.R. now.
    • T.R. is happy, because she finally won a chess game.
  • Chapter 30

    The End?

    • Mr. Eastman is eighty-five and dying, and Turtle's at his bedside. She has an M.A. and a law degree, and works for Westing Paper Products. She's lost and made millions in the stocks. She calls Mr. Eastman "Sandy."
    • He says he's dying and she doesn't want him to. He asks her about all the other players. She tells him what's happened to everyone: Judge Ford is on the Supreme Court. She says Crow and Otis are still working at the soup kitchen, although they are both dead. Sydelle moved with her husband to Hawaii.
    • When he asks about Angela, Turtle realizes for the first time he knew she was the bomber. She says Angela's an orthopedic surgeon, married to Dr. Deere, with a daughter named Alice, which is what Flora used to call Turtle.
    • Turtle notices Mr. Eastman's wearing his Sandy teeth, which must mean he's really dying.
    • Sandy asks about the others: Flora has moved in with Turtle; Chris is married to Shirley and they're both ornithology professors; Chris discovered a fancy parrot.
    • Doug won two gold medals and announces sports; Mr. Hoo's invention is selling well (Turtle doesn't say that Mr. Hoo died and Sunny went to China without him); Grace's ten restaurants are doing pretty well.
    • Turtle's married to Theo, who just wrote a second book. She tells Sandy that they'll have kids one day, although they won't really, because they don't want their kid to get Chris's disease.
    • She tells Sandy about Angela's daughter, and he asks her to ask Crow to pray for him; then he dies. It's July fourth.
    • When Mr. Eastman dies, so do Sandy's other aliases. Everyone thinks it makes sense Turtle's sad about his death. As T.R., she'll follow in his footsteps and be chairman too, someday.
    • Since it's Saturday, she goes to her important weekly meeting: chess in the library with her niece Alice.