Waxworks - Manual
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Warning: Danger Ahead ...................... 1
lust the Basics ............................ 5
How Do I Move Around? .................... 5
What's All This Stuff? ................... 7
What Do I Do With The Stuff? ............. 7
Main Screen ................................ 8
Exhibit Window ........................... 9
Who am 1?................................. 9
Where am 1? .............................. 9
How am I Doing? .......................... 9
Display Box............................... 10
Text Box ................................. 10
Activity Icons ........................... 10
Object Actions ........................... 11
I Need a Break (Pause) ................... 11
Get Me Out of Here (Quit) ................ 12
Things Look Grim ISave and Restore) ...... 12
Interacting With The Inhabitants ........... 13
Fighting For Your Life ................... 13
What to Do With a Dead Body .............. 15
Let's Talk................................ 15
Help Me, Uncle Boris ....................... 15
WARNING: DANGER AHEAD
Still dazed from the strange and terrifying events of the past week,
you pause at the cold, forbidding entrance to Uncle Boris' eerie
stone mansion. Inside awaits the Waxworks You really don't want to
be here. You want to turn on your heel and flee this vile, revolting
place, never to return
But you can't. You must master your fears and go on.
Remember that only you can free your possessed twin Alex from the
dreaded curse of Ixona and save the world from the diabolical forces
of evil he is preparing to unleash. You must face the horrors that
await you in the Waxworks. And you must face them alone.
Lifting the curse of Ixona and saving Alex will not be
easy. You'l] need extraordinary skill and cunning to avoid the
flesh-rending traps and solve the mind-perplexing puzzles that await
you. You'll need heroic courage and superhuman strength to face the
ruthless fiends that lurk within the bowels of the perilous
Waxworks. Take heart. You'll have the benevolent spirit of Uncle
Boris to guide you if you falter.
The forbidding doors slowly open with a low mournful
wail. Your flesh crawls as the faint smell of the musty old wax
museum pervades the air around you. You find yourself staring into
the lifeless eyes of a huge, creepy apparition in a butler's suit.
He escorts you through the halls leading to the exhibits. The
corridors appear harmless but you stil] feel uneasy. Things are not
as they appear.
There are four dangerous, challenging quests to master
and survive before you can save Alex. You will journey to the
mysterious land of the Pharaohs to explore the Great Pyramid and
rescue a beautiful princess. You will have to tread the dark
menacing streets of 1888 London to confront the murder- ous lack the
Ripper and foil his malevo]ent plot. You will also be required to
descend into the treacherous iron mines to battle a huge mutant
plant with an insatiable appetite for human flesh. And you must
enter an unworldly graveyard to confront and vanquish the evil
Necromancer and the rotting, mindless horde of zombies who do his
The time has come for you to enter the exhibits and
face your destiny. Chances a,re you won't survive. You'll probably
be horribly tortured and gruesomely mutilated, before this is over.
You may even lose your life. We wish you luck. You will need it.
JUST THE BASICS
Your ult'imate quest is to discover the secret of the Waxworks and
lift the curse of Ixona that plagues your family. Try to ignore the
gnawing fear in your gut, the feeling of impending disaster that
threatens to overwhelm you. The ghastly exhibits inside hold the key
to your fate.
You have to explore the intricate passages, alleys, and tunnels that
make up the Waxworks. Be warned that once you enter an exhibit, the
only way out is to solve the puzzle, win a terrible battle, or die a
horrible death. When you complete an exhibit, you will be
transported back into your Uncle Boris' wax museum, ready for your
How Do I Move Around?
It's time for you to take action. You can't lift the curse if you're
just standing there.
Start by checking the directions you can go with the Direction
Arrows. If you prefer to check direction with a compass, position
the pointer over the Compass icon in the right corner of your screen
and click. The Direction Arrows change to a Compass (Fig. 11.
Possible directions are highlighted. The top of the Direction Arrow
display or the Compass represents the direction you are facing.
Use any of the following methods to move:
Press the arrow key on your keyboard that corresponds to the
direction you want to move;
ù or move the pointer to the edge of the Exhibit Window toward the
direction you want to move in. When the pointer changes to a
direction pointer, click (Fig. 2);
ù or using the Direction Arrows or Compass, position the pointer on
the direction you want to move in and click.
If you want to turn around to see what''s coming or where you've
been, click on the center of the Direction Arrows or Compass. This
turns you around 180 degrees without affecting your position. As you
progress through an exhibit, you may find you can go up or down to
other levels. At that point, the up or down arrow will light up.
Caution: Its not a good idea to stay in one place too long. Beings
hungry for your blood can come up from behind, stun. and eventually
slaughter you if you aren't paying attention. If you see stars, you
better make a quick 180 degree turn and see who's beating on your
head. Then you can pause and think about what all this means. For
details. see Interacting with the Inhabitants
What's All This Stum
Each exhibit contains lots of objects you can look at, pick up, and
manipu- late. Plaques, papers, and other objects may have something
for you to read. You can use some objects/ like swords and knives,
to perform actions. An object may contain other objects.
Some objects have a hidden purpose, so you may have to examine
things more than once and spend some time to thoroughly evaluate
what they do. Even mutilated bodies may hold some secret, so don't
be too squeamish about rifling their pockets.
To look at something, move the pointer over an object. A brief
description appears in the Text Box. Click once and the Object
Actions appear on the right side of your screen. Object Actions tell
you what you can do with the object and allow you to examine objects
in greater detail. You can EXAMINE the ob ject by clicking on it
again. Extra information is shown in the Display Box (Fig. 33.
Sometimes when you click on something, like a large object, corpse,
or in jured inhabitant, the Exhibit Screen shows a close-up of the
item you clicked. You can tell it's a close-up because a large R
appears in the right corner. When you are done examining and
performing other actions within the object, position the pointer
over the R (return and click. The Exhibit Screen returns to normal
What Do I Do With The Stuff?
You can take almost anything you can touch with your pointer, except
large, heavy objects, things fixed in place, and decomposing
corpses. Some of the stuff is useful, some is not. For instance, you
might want to grab a weapon at your earliest opportunity, in case
something hungry for fresh meat comes your way.
Some objects combine with other objects to form a third, more useful
object. Other times, you may try to use one object on another object
to see if anything interesting happens. The bottom line: ob jects
are not always as they seem at first glance.
Tip: If you can't find what you need, you may have to combine items.
What Do I Do With The Stuff? (continued)
Before you can do something with an object, you must possess it.
There are several ways to do this.
Move the pointer over the Hand icon and click. The pointer changes
to a hand.
Move the hand over an object and click. The object is added to
your inventory. Another way:
Move the pointer over an ob ject and click.
Move the pointer over the Hand icon and click. The object is added
to your inventory. Yet another way:
Move the pointer over an object.
While holding down the left mouse button drag the object into the
Display Box. The object is added to your inventory.
The Display Box shows objects you have taken and added to your
inven- tory (Fig. 3). When you have more stuff than fits in the
Display Box, use the arrows that appear on the right side of the
Display Box to move the display up and down.
This is where all the action takes place. Each time you move, the
Exhibit Window shows your new location. Use it to watch for creepy
inhabitants who might walk right up to you and start hacking away.
Use it to find objects you'll need to solve the mysteries that await
you. Use it to play Waxworks.
Who am l?
When you step into an exhibit, you become an inhabitant of the
exhibit, a character in the time period you have stepped into. The
Character Box in the top left corner of your screen shows who you
are (Fig. 3).
Where am l?
That's a good question. When you're running around dark alleys and
twisting corridors, things can get pretty confusing. You may want to
take some extra time and create a map of each exhibit as you go
How am I Doing?
The Status Line across the bottom shows you the state of your
current character (Fig. 3). It shows the following four very
important pieces of information:
HP Hit Points: Goes up with your level. (;oes down when you are
under attack from some nasty inhabitant. If HP reaches zero, you're
dead and it's not a pretty sight. Uncle Boris may be able to help
you increase your HP if you are in jured, and have the items he
LEV Level: Goes up as you gain experience; other powers increase
allowing you to gain more HP and fight fiercer, scarier opponents.
EXP Experience: Goes up as you explore the exhibits, solve puzzles,
and kill things. As EXP reaches a certain point, your level goes up.
PSY Psychic Energy: Reflects how much psychic energy you have to
contact your Uncle Boris using the Crystal Ball Decreases when you
get hints, information about the game, or healing from Uncle Boris.
Shows critical information about exhibits, objects, and inhabitants
you encounter during your quest Fig. 3). It allows you to: Look at
what you~ve collected
Find out more about an object
Receive messages about your progress
Talk to the inhabitants
Displays a brief description of the object on which the pointer is
Activity icons let you manipulate objects in Waxworks. To animate a
par- ticular icon, move the pointer over it and click (Fig. 4).
To toggle between the Direction Arrow and Compass Indicator (located
on the left side of the screen), move the pointer over the Compass
icon and click.
Picks up and moves objects. The pointer changes to a hand. Position
the hand over an object and click. The object is added to your
Crystal Ball Icon
Contacts Uncle Boris. Uncle Boris guides you on your journey by
providing hints, information about your objective in each exhibit,
and healing. Using the Crystal Ball will cost you Psychic Energy.
Returns the inventory display to the Display Box. Use after a
message, when searching a large object, or any other activity which
causes your inventory to disappear from the Display Box.
Gets your weapon ready for use. Displays all weapons from your
inventory that you can use to fight. See Fighting For Your Life for
Use the sword icon to engage in a fight. The pointer changes to a
sword. See Fighting For Your Life for details.
Object Actions appear on the right side of the screen (Fig. 3). They
display what you can do with an object. They appear when you move
the pointer over an object and click. Some common Ob ject Actions
are EXAMINE, USE, OPEN, CLOSE, LOOK IN, and DROP. Move the pointer
over the action you want and click.
I Need a Break (Pause)
At any time, you can take a break and think about the latest
life-threatening problem you've encountered. Iust move the pointer
over the ZZZ icon IFig. 3) and click. The game pauses. When you are
ready to continue, click on CONTINUE or press any key.
Get Me Out of Here (Quit)
You can leave the Waxworks at anytime. To do this, move the pointer
over the Disk icon ( Fig. 3) and click. Move the pointer over the
Quit option and click. If you change your mind, click on any blank
area within the Quit box or click on the word NO.
Note: Considering saving your position before you quit. Then the
next time you play Waxworks, you can start from where you left off.
Things Look Grim (Save and Restore)
Death can come swiftly and painfully in Waxworks. When you face a
vicious foe, or have completed some complicated series of actions,
you'll probably want to save your position.
1 Move the pointer over the Disk icon (Fig. 3) and click.
2 Move the pointer over the Save option and click.
3 Enter the name (up to eight characters) for the position you want
to save. Pick a name that wil] later help you remember what the
position represents. Press Enter to save the game.
Note: Any previous saved-positions appear on your screen. You can
update a previously-saved position with your current position. To do
this, move the pointer over the name of the previously saved
position and double click.
After you have saved your position, you can return to it at any
To Restore a Previously Saved Game:
1 Move the pointer over the Disk icon (Fig. 3) and click.
2 Move the pointer over the Restore option and click.
3 Move the pointer over the position name you want to restore and
To return to the game without saving or restoring a position, move
the pointer over the word EXIT and click.
Note: If you have more than 26 saved games, Waxworks will create a
second page of saved games. To retrieve a game from the second page,
position the pointer over the word MORE and click. The select the
position restore and click.
INTERACTING WITH THE INHABITANTS
You are going to encounter many strange inhabitants while you are
wander- ing around the exhibits. When you see someone, you can:
Fight them; the most common form of interaction in Waxworks
Search them; for interesting ob jects, if they are dead
Talk to them; ask questions to obtain useful bits of information
Fighting For Your Life
Trying to figure out when to fight and when to talk? If you're
confronted by a monster or a guard, chances are your opponent won't
want to talk. He may want to chop off your head, or cut out your
heart, but it's unlikely he'll have chit-chat in mind. Which means
you're going to have to fight--a lot.
Be on the lookout for effective weapons, such as axes,.spears, and
swords. You may even have to make do with an object like a shovel
until you can find or make something better.
After you've picked up a weapon, you need to ready it for fighting.
To do this, position the pointer over the Axe icon and click. All
available weap- ons in your inventory appear in the Display Box.
Positjon the pointer over the weapon you want to use and click.
Then, move the pointer over the Object Actions labelled USE and
As soon as you see an opponent, click on the Sword icon. The Sword
icon activates whatever weapon you've selected and prepares you for
fighting. If you haven't selected a weapon, you'll be fighting these
unruly inhabitants with your bare fists. Not a good idea. You might
want to run away and find a weapon. However, some opponents will
chase you around, forcing you to fight them eventually.
Tip: Seeing stars? Someone's behind you knocking on your head.
Fighting For Your Life (continued)
When you are ready to fight, your pointer becomes a sword. Now you
can thrust or slash, hacking away at your opponent until one of you
dies. Where you position the pointer on the screen determines
whether you thrust or slash and the body part you attack. For
example, when you position your weapon in the upper left corner of
the Exhibit Window and click, the weapon slashes from the top left
to the lower right, making a crosscut on your opponent's body (Fig.
5). Also, the body part you click on can make a big difference in a
fight--a well-placed, quick blow may remove an enemy's arm or some
other offending appendage.
Blood gushes from your opponent when you score a hit. Of course,
blood gushes from your wounds when he hits you But spurting blood
isn't the only indication of what's going on. The boxes on the left
and right bottom of your screen become active when you engage an
enemy (Fig. 6). They tell you about the damage per swing. The
gruesome monster on the right shows the damage that you take when an
enemy strikes you. The heroic character on the left shows the damage
you cause when you strike him.
Hit points (HP) go down each time you are hit. This continues until
you kill your opponent, run away, or your hit points reach zero and
you die. By the way, fighting is to the death.
What to Do With a Dead Body
There are going to be lots of dead bodies Iying around, some killed
by other inhabitants, some of your own making. You can search any
corpse you encounter and take whatever is on the body.
When you fight a foe, you share your position with him. When you
kill him, he falls at your feet, disappearing from view. To see the
body, you have to move away from the position you share with the
corpse. Take a step for- ward, then turn around 180 degrees. Now
that you can see the body, you can search it.
When you want to search a body, position the pointer over it and
click. Select the SEARCH option from the Object Actions and click.
You better hope he's really dead.
Not all inhabitants are out for your blood. Some may provide you
with useful information. Others may follow you around and help
instead of bludgeoning you into unconsciousness. However, it not
always going to be real obvious who's who.
If you think one of the inhabitants wants to get chatty, position
your pointer on the inhabitant and click. If he's interested in
talking, a conversa- tion appears in the Display Box. If not, he'll
probably take a swing at you.
When you're talking with an inhabitant, you may be given a series of
questions or answers to select from. Position the pointer over the
question or answer you wish to communicate and click.
HELP ME, UNCLE BORIS
Dying a horrible death doesn't stop someone like your Uncle Boris.
He's around to provide you with advice and assistance just as if he
were alive. To call him, just position the pointer over the Crystal
Ball and click.
You can ask Uncle Boris for three kinds of help:
Information; only Uncle Boris knows what he had in mind when he
created these exhibits. He is more than willing to communicate this
information to you as you need it.
HELP ME, UNCLE BORIS (continued)
Hints; if you're having trouble solving some aspect of the :
Waxworks, Uncle Boris can share his vast knowledge with you. He can
help you solve complex puzzles and face challenging situations.
Healing; your abi]ity to obtain special powers usually depends on
you having some object in your possession and having achieved a
Asking for help costs Psychic Energy. The amount of energy depends
on the kind of help you request.
Note: Talking with Uncle Boris is just like talking with any other
inhabitant of the Waxworks.
The Curse of the Twins
Your life changed the day Uncle Boris was buried. The omens were bad
right from the start of that cold, wet morning. You'd been up all
night on a red-eye flight, dreading this your first visit back to
your birthplace since your twin brother Alex had disappeared so many
You'd been a teenager the day Alex and you had gone off to explore
one of the myriad dank tunnels that honey-combed the earth under
Vista Forge, the coastal mining community where you were born. A
cloud of bats had suddenly swarmed out of a side shaft, knocking the
flashlight out of your hand. When you finally found the light and
turned it back on, Alex was gone.
A week-long search by the police and fifty volunteers had failed to
find your brother. He had simply vanished, as if the earth had
swallowed him whole. Yet, deep in your heart, you had never been
able to accept Alex's death. Like all identical twins, there was an
invisible chord between you and your brother, a bond formed in the
womb that acted as a conduit of feelings and emotions between you.
Growing up, you'd felt the pain whenever Alex hurt him- self, and
the paralyzing fear the time he locked himself in an old
refrigerator. That link between you hadn't been broken, and
sometimes in bed at night you would smell a musty odor, or taste
something strange in your mouth, and you wondered...you wondered.
There was another odd physical manifestation you were convinced was
somehow linked to Alex. Often, just before you drifted off to sleep,
you would suddenly have a very strong mental image of your brother
and at that moment your toes would curl down under toward your heels
so violently that your feet still hurt in the morning.
The streets were slick and puddled from the rain as you drove your
rented car away from the airport. You glanced at your watch and
realized you'd be late for the service at the cemetery. Memories
flooded back as you drove through town. It seemed like nothing in
Vista Forge had changed; same houses, same storefronts, same
dispirited looks on the faces of the people on the sidewalks. Even
the trees and bushes looked like they hadn't grown an inch since
Nearing the storm lashed coast, you caught sight of Uncle Boris'
eerie stone mansion set on a cliff overlooking the pounding surf.
The house had been built over a yawning sea cave and you remembered
the rumors that the wave-swept cavity was connected to the mine
tunnels further inland.
Even from a distance, the house had a weird look about it, a spooky
aura that reflected the man who'd owned it. Uncle Boris had always
been strange. He had a macabre fascination with everything evil,
from torture devices to mass murderers. So obsessed was he with the
demoniac netherworld that he d converted his lonely home into a
Waxworks filled with witches, monsters and evil beings.
Not long after Uncle Boris began his Waxworks, word began to spread
through Vista Forge of horrible screams coming from the stone house,
and fishermen spreading their nets offshore swore they saw monstrous
shapes passing the lighted windows at night Everyone in the
community gave the Waxworks a wide berth, and after one visit not
even your parents would go near the ghoulish mansion.
Once, you and Alex had played hookey from,school and a delighted
Uncle Boris had given you a tour of the creepy chambers. You had
shuddered at the sight of Jack the Ripper and the Egyptian mummy and
other fiendish exhibits. Yet Alex had been both fascinated and
fearless, and almost every week after that he would sneak over to
the Waxworks and spend hours alone with Uncle Boris' collection of
After Alex disappeared, your parents were afraid the tunnels under
Vista Forge would claim you too. They sold their house, vowing never
to return, and the three of you moved far away.
By the time you got to the cemetery, the rain was coming down in
cold, sLanting sheets, running in rivulets between the gravestones.
You were the last one to arrive, and the little knot of people at
the grave site threw you accusing looks, obviously put out you'd
kept them waiting in the downpour.
There was no other family member there to say goodbye to Uncle
Boris, only two unshaven grave diggers in oilcloth rain-slickers and
a stoop shouldered minister who continu- ously coughed deep in his
chest and wiped his dripping nose with a sopping, threadbare
The pasty-faced minister droned through a brief prayer and had
hardly said Amen before the grave diggers were pulling out the
planks holding the casket over the grave. The wet ropes slipped
quickly through their hands as they lowered the coffin into the
Suddenly a blinding flash stabbed down from the sky and a lightning
bolt split open an old oak tree only yards up the slope. Startled
witless, the grave diggers let loose the ropes and Uncle Boris'
coffin plunged into the rectangular pit.
As the coffin hit bottom, a tremendous clap of thunder shook the
graveyard, echoing madly off the rain-streaked walls of the
surrounding mausoleums. Before the echo of the thunder died away a
nauseous slurping sound burst from the - grave, as if the water in a
huge sink were being sucked down a tunnel-sized drain. The sickening
sound grew louder and louder, and now you could feel the ground
trembling beneath your feet.
The grave diggers stared down into the hole in disbelief, their
faces masks of revulsion and fear. Then they turned and ran, sliding
and falling as they disappeared into the pelting rain. The minister
stood there dumbfounded, his mouth open as you stepped carefully up
to the side of the grave and peered down at the coffin.
Only there wasn't any coffin. The bottom of the pit was empty Where
the rectangular walls ended, a funnel shaped '' hole descended down
into a black void. Like Alex, Uncle Boris had been swallowed up by
Then, you couldn't be sure, but you thought you saw movement far
below. The next moment there was a face in the dark gloom. Your
face! For an instant you thought you were going mad. Was there a
mirror down there in the muddy pit? Then y~3ur throat constricted
and you couldn't breath as you realized you weren't seeing a
reflection of your face but a replica.
"Alex!" you screamed, an instant before the face vanished again.
Confused and frightened now, you staggered back away from the grave.
The minister had disappeared. Drenched to the skin, your head
splitting, you trudged off through the rain toward the cemetery
When you got there the director was waiting, and the pale faced
grave diggers were throwing back shots of whiskey in the corner. The
bald, black-suited director wrung his bony hands as he apologized
for the terrible incident. He knew this would happen some day, he
said, wetting his dry lips, for like most of the Vista Forge the
ground beneath the cemetery was a labyrinth of mine tunnels and
shafts. A cave-in was inevitable. He promised to send some men down
into the grave pit as soon as the rain stopped. They'd rebury Uncle
Boris at the cemetery's expense.
The explanation seemed logical, but still the grotesque incident had
unnerved you. When you mumbled that you'd seen a face in the grave,
a face like yours, the director had shrugged and said you'd
undoubtedly seen your own face reflected back by a puddle down
below. You clung to his explanation. A water reflection, of course,
why hadn't you thought of that. That had to be it.
By the time you reached the motel where you'd reserved a room, you
weren't sure what had happened. All you knew was that you wanted out
of Vista Forge. Fast. Your first impulse was to fly home
immediately. But then, after a fitful hour of indecision, you
decided you'd stay over for the night. You were scheduled to attend
a reading of Uncle Boris' will at an attorney's office the next
morning, and in his last letter the eccentric old gentleman had
written that you were to inherit his entire estate.
Nightmares plagued your sleep that night, terrible visions of the
animated corpses of Alex and Uncle Boris wandering the perpetually
dark tunnels below Vista Forge, their putrefying flesh scaling off
their faces in rancid slabs.
At 3 a.m. you gave up on sleep and lay there in your hotel bed
thinking, remembering. You recalled Uncle Boris' one and only visit
to your home several years after you'd moved away from Vista Forge.
When Uncle Boris walked in the door that day long ago, he d stared
at you for several long moments without saying a word. Then, when
your parents were both off in the kitchen, he'd suddenly turned and
told you how much you looked like Alex. The remark had unnerved you
for Alex was dead, had been for years by then.
Shortly afterwards, you'd all sat down to dinner. The talk had
gradually shifted to the family history. Your ancestors on your
mother's side had come from a tiny village in Walachia, a Rumanian
province deep in the Transylvanian Alps. It was a region where
werewolves and vampires were said to roam the countryside on
moonless nights, and peasants feared nothing more than an evil
Your mother had tried to shift the conversation, but Uncle Boris
insisted on telling of the legend of Ixona, a dark family secret for
centuries past. During the barbarous days of the Middle Ages, he
said, one of your ancestors had caught an old witch named Ixona
stealing chickens from his farm. As punish- ment, he had cut off the
screaming hag's right hand with an ax.
Lying in the dirt of the farmyard, the ragged crone had drawn a
crystal ball from beneath her blood-caked cloak and set it in the
dust before her. "In every family there is dormant evil waiting to
be awakened," she'd said in an agonized voice. "For spilling my
blood, I shall call forth an ancient curse to poison yours."
Your ancestor had brought up his ax to finish off the hag, but his
pregnant wife had stayed his arm, terrified that killing the crone
would rain evil down upon both of them.
Her face twisted in agony, the witch had stared into the murky
depths of the glass globe before her. "Two thousand years ago one of
your Egyptian ancestors had twin boys. One was good, but the other
was cursed by an evil pharaoh and turned into a monster."
The witch had struggled to her feet, hate raging in her bloodshot
eyes as she clutched the crystal ball against her. "I call upon the
curse of the Pharaoh to return. Once more, in every generation in
which your family bears twins, one shall belong to Beelzebub."
The farmer's wife screamed in fright for the village midwife had
told her she would have twins. Your ancestor had tried to smash the
crystal ball with his ax but the witch had whirled out of reach and
quickly fled to the safety of the nearby dark woods.
Soon afterward the farmer's wife gave birth to twin sons. One,
Druec, grew up to be a decent hardworking farmer, but the other,
Vladimir, was corrupt and lusted after money and power. As the
witch's evil curse took hold of him, it was said, his feet became
cloven and he was forced to wear special boots to walk
Gathering the miscreants of the province, Vladimir pillaged
neighboring villages, and gradually gathered an army of cruel
mercenaries around him. In 1448 he seized the throne of Walachia and
instituted a reign of terror as Vlad IV.
One of his first acts as prince was to send out his army to find the
old witch who had cursed his family. She was thrown into the dungeon
and repeatedly tortured, but she refused to lift the curse.
Infuriated, Vlad had her impaled on a stake driven into the bottom
of a swamp outside his walls. In the two days it took the old hag to
die, the bog's snakes and snapping turtles stripped the living flesh
from her body bite by small bite.
In the years that followed, Vlad had his enemies in Walachia
tortured to death, and then ordered their bodies impaled on stakes
at the borders of his kingdom. History was to know him as Vlad the
Impaler, one of the bloodiest tyrants ever to rule on the earth.
The curse of Ixona persisted down through the centuries and whenever
twins were born into your family one took to evil ways. It was said
one twin was the head torturer during the Spanish Inquisition,
another was rumored to be the Marquis de Sade and a female twin was
burned at the stake during the Salem witch trials.
When Uncle Boris finished his story, your mother looked at you and
paled, for, though Alex was gone, you too were a twin. Uncle Boris
saw her look and reached across the table to pat her hand
reassuringly. She wasn't to worry, he'd said, for he'd found the way
to finally lift Ixona's curse from the family.
Uncle Boris leaned back in his chair and went on. As they all knew,
he had built a Waxworks with recreations of some of history's most
fiendish murderers and monsters. He had purposely surrounded himself
with these demonic characters for he was convinced that by immersing
himself totally in evil he could come to understand the sinister
forces loose on earth, and thus know better how to lift Ixona's
And it had worked. One night, staring at the wax face of Vlad the
Impaler, he'd had a vision of a dark bog pocked with broken masonry
blocks. He'd flown to Walachia and within days had located the swamp
he'd dreamt of close beside the north wall of the ruined castle.
He'd hired workmen to drain the marsh and when the water receded
there, sticking out of the muddy bottom, was the skeleton of a woman
impaled on an oak stake.
An iron box was hung around her neck with a chain, and in the box
was the crystal ball Ixona had used to curse the family 600 years
Uncle Boris explained that he had only begun to under- stand the
powers of the ancient glass sphere. It would take him years, but
eventually, he promised, he would find a way to lift Ixona's curse.
That family dinner was the last time you'd seen Uncle Boris alive.
At 7 a.m. the phone rang. It was the cemetery director. As soon as
it was light that morning he'd sent men down into the grave to
retrieve Uncle Boris' body. Just as he'd suspected, there was a mine
tunnel under the grave site. They found the casket in the dark
passage. The director hesitated. He didn't know quite how to tell
you this, but the coffin had been smashed open. The body was gone.
He had no explanation.
Without a word, you hung up the phone, feeling a sudden compulsion
to go down into the tunnels yourself. You would go in the same
entrance you and Alex had used the day he'd disappeared years
You bought a lantern at the local hardware store and forty- five
minutes later you entered the old mine. You could tell by the thick
spider webs and undisturbed dust that no one had been in there in
years. The light soon faded, along with the hum of traffic from the
nearby interstate, The only sound now was the dripping of water
leaking in from yesterday's rain and the whistling of the wind
through the narrow passages.
Several minutes later you reached the spot where Alex had
disappeared. All of a sudden, you could feel his presence, like warm
breath on the back of your neck. As you swung the light around to
search the gloom, the beam revealed what looked like a pile of dry
sticks protruding from the dust of the tunnel floor.
You knelt to pick one up and realized with a start that these
weren't sticks but bones. Bat bones! How strange, you thought, that
so many bats would die in exactly the same spot. Then something
about one of the bones made you look more closely. Your heart began
to beat wildly. There were teeth marks on the bone. Human teeth
There was another heap of bat bones nearby. And most of them, you
could see, showed clear signs that someone had butchered and eaten
the animals. Suddenly your eye caught something glistening beneath a
thin layer of dust. You bent and brushed away the powder, then
yanked back your hand in horror. It was a fresh fishhead, the
remains of one of the saltwater fish that found their way into the
tunnels from the distant sea cave.
A sickly sweat coursed from your pores as you turned quickly for the
entrance, looking back over your shoulder every few paces. Halfway
back, a side tunnel led off to the right and you noticed fresh
tracks in the dust. They hadn't been there when you came in, you
were sure of that.
You swept the light over the tracks and froze. They were the
imprints of cloven feet! You knew now. Someone-- something--was
living in the tunnel, eating bats and fish to survive. You ran as
fast as you could back down the tunnel and out into the light.
On the way to the lawyer's office, you couldn't shake the feeling of
horror that gripped you. Who could be living in the tunnels? Who
The lawyer looked the part, a tall gray haired man in a pin- striped
suit surrounded by lawbooks. Being the executor of Uncle Boris'
estate would net him only a small fee and he looked profoundly
bored. You were the sole heir, the attorney said, something you
already knew, and Uncle Boris had left you all his holdings. There
was a small bank account, a ten year old Dodge, and, of course, the
Waxworks. Finally, there was a sealed envelope from your uncle that
contained a letter and the keys to his eerie mansion.
The attomey volunteered to handle the sale of the Wax- works, which
he assumed you'd want to dispose of as soon as possible. It was an
unsavory place, the lawyer said, though he'd never been inside. The
stories about the Waxworks, he added, kept most people from visiting
the chilling mansion. If it were up to him, he'd tear the place down
and sell the land to developers.
You thanked the attorney and left, the envelope from Uncle Boris in
your coat pocket. Back at the hotel, you decided to read the letter
later and tossed it on the dresser. You called the airline and
reserved a seat on the six o'clock plane, then changed into a coat
and tie for the trip home. As you were knotting your tie in the
mirror, your eye strayed to the envelope and curiosity got the
better of you.
Sitting down on the bed, you slit the seal, took out the keys to the
Waxworks, and then unfolded your uncle's letter.
"My Dear Sister's Child," the letter began. "What you will read in
these pages will shock you, and you will feel revulsion and horror
at what you learn. Yet, I must tell you all, for now that I have
gone over to the other side you are the only one on earth who can
stop the evil that is to come.
"You must know first that your twin brother is alive., all these
years he has dwelt in the tunnels beneath Vista Forge, emerging from
his dark lair only at night. He was preordained from birth to come
under the curse of the ancient witch Ixona and that day he
disappeared he was taken by the forces of evil. Now, he belongs to
the dark side and does the bidding of Beelzebub. You must neither
hate nor blame him, for his will is not his own.
"It is still not too late to save your twin, to free his tortured
soul from the evil curse that grips and drives him. Yet, do not
deceive yourself that his salvation will be easy. He will fight you
with the ferocity of Beelzebub himself, and he has terrible powers
undreamed of by sane minds.
"You see, your brother has been given dominion over the demons of
the past. His unholy mission is to use his nefarious powers to
resurrect the evil beings that have tortured and murdered through
history. Unless you stop him, innocent men, women and children will
fall prey to these fiends and monsters, and the entire world will
inexorably come under the control of his zombie slaves.
"I will help you all I can, appearing to you from the swirling mists
within Ixona's crystal ball. You must waste no time. Go to the
Waxworks at once. But go prepared for a journey through the
supernatural, a trip back through time. You will be surrounded by
evil, beset by fiends, yet you must not falter. Your brother's
salvation and the fate of the world is now in your hands.
Slowly you put down the letter, your mind reeling. The suspicion,
the feeling you'd had all these years is true. Your twin brother's
alive! But in what form? True, he has a face, you saw that in the
bottom of the grave, and it was like looking in the mirror. But what
about the rest of him. You shudder at the thought of the cloven
footprints in the mine tunnel.
An overpowering urge to flee comes over you. All you can think of is
getting on that plane and leaving Vista Forge and the Waxworks and
your cloven-footed brother as far behind you as possible. Yet, you
know you can't leave. You've inherited the Waxworks, and with it the
terrible mandate handed down to you by Uncle Boris.
With dread in your heart, you put on your coat and drive slowly
toward the Waxworks. The rain has returned and your heartbeat seems
to synchronize with the rhythmic sound of the wiper blades thumping
back and forth across the windshield.
It's dusk when you reach the Waxworks. As you park your car, a
lightning bolt pierces the rapidly darkening sky and the air feels
charged with electricity. The clap of thunder that follows is even
louder that yesterdays booming storm over the cemetery.
As you walk toward the door of the eerie mansion you know Alex is
somewhere inside. And with him, his zombie slaves, the most evil
cast of murderous monsters ever to walk the face of the earth.
Typed by R/\D/\R Of (\/)iNiSTRY