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Visual Novel / Veil of Secrets

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Veil of Secrets is one of the many stories of Pixelberry's Choices: Stories You Play collection.

Your best friend from college has invited you to her wedding! But in the town of Birchport, everyone has a secret...

Tropes

  • Amateur Sleuth: Jesse becomes one once it's clear that the police won't be of any help in investigating the case.
  • Amoral Attorney: D.A. Mac Hornby from Chapter 11 delivers false testimony about Kate being a Gold Digger during her trial, tries to discredit Jesse as a reliable eyewitness, and manipulates the testimonies of other eyewitnesses to ensure Kate's incarceration. Flynn mentions that Hornby is a frequent guest at the Sterlings' parties, implying that he's under their influence (similar to Walsh).
  • Anyone Can Die: Agent Kim states that there are at least four murders. The reveal in Chapter 4 that one of them is Tanner Sterling means that this is not limited to minor characters.
    • Chapter 9 adds Bryce to the list of deaths while Chapter 14 adds Margaret, Walsh, and state investigator Tino Thompson.
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    • The statement that there are "at least four" murders can be taken to mean that depending on player choices, some may live or die as evidenced by the Premium choice to save Nikolai's life after he is shot by Duffy.
    • Chapter 15 is multiple choice. Jesse has time to save either Duffy or Pierce, leaving the other to die in the flames. Alternately, Jesse can choose to let them both die.
  • Bond One-Liner: Duffy gives one before killing Margaret Sterling in Chapter 14.
    Duffy: Sorry, Margaret, the evil stepmother always dies.
    • Jesse gives one depending on whether you save Duffy or Pierce in Chapter 15.
    Jesse: You have the right to remain dead. (if Pierce is saved)/End of the line, Pierce. (if Duffy is saved)
  • *Click* Hello: Chapter 13 ends with Jesse and Flynn cornered by Margaret... armed with a shotgun.
  • Darker and Edgier: The whole series is set in a town with a biased and corrupt justice system with ties to a very powerful family. They also do not shy away from showing blood on the various murder victims (including a very gruesome shot of Tanner with his throat slashed).
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  • Dumpster Dive: More like trash can diving, but teaming up with Flynn or Grant in Chapter 2 has this happen with finding a broken phone, one that happens to be Bryce's.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: After going through hell, most of Jesse's potential endings have him or her choose which love interest (including Kate) to stay with in Birchport, instead of returning to New York.
  • Enormous Engagement Ring: Kate shows off her engagement ring to Jesse and it's described as rather big. Jesse jokingly asked if it hurt Kate's hand.
  • Hollywood New England: The story takes place in the town of Birchport, Massachusetts. However, the book itself zigzags the trope in two major ways:
    • The O'Malleys and Tony Rez fulfill the "hard-working dockworker" part, while the Sterlings satisfy the "snooty aristocrat" part. However, the law enforcement characters and the Emersons (who are wealthy attorneys but not members of the aristocracy) avert both stereotypes.
    • The geography and weather in the story completely avert the trope: Birchport alone has high mountains, long coastline and sudden weather.
  • How We Got Here: The story starts with Jesse in FBI custody with Agent Kim wanting to know what led up to four murders over the course of a month, all starting from a wedding.
  • Meet Cute: In the premium scene in Chapter 1, Kate tells Jesse and the Emerson siblings that she and Tanner met when he was forced to take cover in her bakery during a rainy night. They spent all night bonding and eating cupcakes.
  • Noodle Incident: In the premium scene in Chapter 1, Scarlett confesses to having one of these involving spilling red wine on Elton John's white suit.
  • Nouveau Riche: The Sterlings look down on the Emersons, considering them to be this.
  • Old Friend: Jesse and Kate have been friends since Hartfeld. They first met 7 years ago as college roommates, but they drifted apart after graduation.
  • Old Money: The Sterlings are not only old money, but if you team up with Flynn in Chapter 2, he says that by the time colonists got to the New World in the 1600s, the Sterlings had built up a shipping empire as well as their fortune.
  • Passive-Aggressive Kombat: The first time you meet Scarlet, Jesse has the option to go the peaceful route. Doing so shuts her down and both Tanner and Kate are surprised they managed to shut her up. They attribute it to them being from the Midwest.
  • Police are Useless: Local police chief Tommy Walsh is completely unwilling to put any effort into investigating Kate's disappearance - not even when he's presented with clear cut evidence that something is wrong. It's possible he's taking bribes from the Sterlings, which isn't implausible at all given the Sterling influence on the town. The only police officer who actually cares about investigating the case is Naomi Silverhawk (and Walsh eventually fires her for it).
  • Pre-Mortem One-Liner: Duffy gives one before killing Chief Walsh in Chapter 14.
    Duffy: With all due respect, Chief...I'd like to file my notice of resignation.
  • Professionals Do It on Desks: A premium choice with Grant, a lawyer, allows the two of them to do it on his desk.
  • Room Full of Crazy: The premium choice in Chapter 7 allows Jesse and Naomi to find one of these rooms in the cabin where the kidnapper has been stalking the Sterlings even down to their genealogy charts.
  • Stag Party: A premium choice in Chapter 1 allows Jesse, Grant and Scarlett to take Kate out to a bachelorette party.
  • The Reveal /Wham Episode:
    • Chapter 4 ends with Flynn (and Jesse if you paid the Premium choice) finding Tanner's dead body. Not helping things is how, if you paid for the choice, you will actually get to see the corpse in full graphic detail.
    • Chapter 7 ends with you and Naomi discovering Kate, alive but drugged and disoriented, held captive in the basement of a secluded cabin.
    • Chapter 9 has all the fireworks going off and Bryce getting blown up!
    • Chapter 14 is a big one! Kate is pregnant with Tanner's child. Deputy Jeff Duffy is the killer and proceeds to kill the state investigator, Chief Walsh and Margaret Sterling! He's also the bastard love child of Pierce Sterling and his secretary Alanis Acosta.
  • Town with a Dark Secret: There's more to Birchport than meets the eye, including more than a few skeletons in the closet.
  • Trophy Room: Chapter 3 has Jesse find their way by accident into the Sterlings' trophy room. Some of the trophies involved are lacrosse trophies for Tanner and Bryce, and an entire section is reserved for Margaret's tennis days.
  • Uptown Girl: Kate, a dockworker's daughter, is marrying someone from one of the richest families in town. It causes some people to consider her a Gold Digger.
  • "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue: If the player collects all the available clues, there is a bonus scene at the end of the story which reveals not only the events leading up to what we saw in the story, but also shows how all the characters' lives turned out afterward. Naomi becomes the new chief of police with Flynn as her deputy, Grant continues his law work and considers running for the United States Senate by taking Adam Vega's spot, Kate raises a happy daughter and sees her bakery business take off, Pierce (if still alive) ends up dying in prison but leaves Sterling Manor and all his money to Kate in his will, Duffy (if still alive) spends the rest of his life in prison but becomes remorseful for his crimes and is said to be a model inmate, and Jesse (depending on the player's choice) either stays in Birchport with their chosen love interest or returns to New York.
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