Whoops, I forgot to finish writing my story about Nancy Drew: Ghost of Thornton Hall! Here's the chapter where Nancy solves the mystery.
Why doesn't she return my calls? Ned wondered, for the eighth time. He understood that Nancy needed her space at the moment, but it wasn't like her to ignore him. Usually, Nancy met all of her problems head-on.
Ned called Nancy's phone. It rang six times, before going to voicemail. He hung up, instead of leaving another message.
Okay, Ned, think positive. Maybe she's just busy with the case right now. She'll probably call back, as soon as she's found the missing girl.
...Either that, or she hates me.
Ned took a moment to figure out what message he wanted to leave for Nancy, then he called again. This time, Nancy answered.
"Thornton Hall is on fire," she said tersely. "This is not a good time for a phone call."
"Nancy!" Ned said. "I've been so—"
"RAUGH!" Nancy shouted, before hanging up the phone. She reset the clock on the left and pulled the lever, only to have it fail. Again.
"Who was that?" Clara asked. Both she and Nancy were currently trapped inside Charlotte's old bedroom, thanks to a fire in the hallway.
"No one you know," Nancy said. "Who changed the clock speeds when I wasn't looking? And why isn't there a fire extinguisher in this house?!"
"This house has been abandoned, ever since Charlotte's death," Clara said. "There's no need to have a fire extinguisher if no one lives here."
"Charlotte died in a fire on this property!" Nancy argued. "You think the insurance company or fire department or somebody would make you put fire extinguishers everywhere!"
The teen detective slammed her fist against the second-from-right clock, which was out of sync with the others. She had no idea why the clocks were working differently during a fire. Of all the times for the clocks to mess up!
Clara started screaming about the fire, which did not help Nancy's concentration. After three minutes or so—Nancy wasn't sure, because the clocks were messed up—the puzzle was solved, and the hidden passageway behind the painting was opened.
"Come on, let's go!" Nancy said, grabbing Clara's wrist.