Hidden Will
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(permanent link) added: 2012-06-04 20:48:02 sponsor: Prfnoff (last reply: 2012-12-03 00:19:57)

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Characters are sure someone left a will, but it isn't easy to find, perhaps because an Inadequate Inheritor didn't want it found.

Examples:

  • The film adaptation of The Borrowers involves an unscrupulous lawyer claiming that the deceased in question never wrote a proper will, thus making him the sole beneficiary of her estate including the house that her niece's family the film's protagonists are currently living in. In reality, she had an extra copy hidden in the walls of the house itself because she never did trust lawyers.
  • A flashback episode of Pound Puppies shows that, in order to keep Katrina Stoneheart from inheriting her aunt's Puppy Pound, the puppies needed to find her aunt's will, where it was stated the pound must go to Katrina's niece Holly.

Examples that need more context:

  • Who Framed Roger Rabbit has Marvin Acme's will, which was hidden. (In plain sight, as a matter of fact.)
  • Several Lord Peter Wimsey plots involve this:
    • When a will is discovered in a book Lord Peter deduces, from the water stains on the book but not the will, that one of the heirs had hidden it there to keep the condition from being fulfilled.
    • In order to find one will, Lord Peter and his client have to solve a crossword puzzle.
  • Quite a few of Rex Stout's Nero Wolfe novellas and novels revolve around wills; real, fake, hidden, disputed, and lost. Among them are The Red Box, Where There's A Will, The Rubber Band, When A Man Murders and Window For Death. Which one is hidden?
  • Several Agatha Christie stories revolved around hidden wills, and a series of cryptic clues that force the potential heirs to enlist the help of one of her detective characters.
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