A Strange Thud

Hey, let’s gossip.
Herringwood is a small town, of course there’s gossip. Like this little gem: Laura Blue is dating Frances “Mitch” Mitchell. This might surprise you, considering you’ve just read about how Laura was making out with Christa Jones between the dumpsters behind the law firm. 
Don’t worry. Mitch is aware of this, and he’s okay with it. He probably secretly hopes, as testosterone dictates, that he’ll get a threesome out of it. Can’t blame him. Christa and Laura are both nice girls.
The reason Laura’s relationship with Mitch isn’t in the story comes down to simple cuts. Initially I tried to keep a reference to it, but it didn’t make a lot of sense to waste several sentences on a useless exchange between Eddie and Laura about her stepping out with Christa while she was with Mitch.
In earlier drafts, there was a rather sizable quest in which this became clear, but it was based on the idea that players would point & click their way through the quest, in which case a little back and forth between locations is almost expected. Readers, on the other hand, don’t really need that, it turns out.
Bit of a shame, though. There was a great Monkey Island tribute in that storyline.

In this version, Eddie planned to do some mild blackmailing to get the Raffle Master information from Mitch. He still finds Mitch in the cell, but he slams the door shut as a joke and accidentally locks Mitch in.
Usually this wouldn’t be a big problem for a police officer, considering he owns the cell and everything, but Mitch mistakenly gave his keys to Laura the night before at a party, where she promised him to go to his house and wait for him wearing elf ears… Yeah, just elf ears. This might just seem like I’m low-key admitting to a fetish, but it gets important, I promise.
Eddie tells Mitch he’ll get the keys if Mitch gets him the info. Reluctantly Mitch agrees and Eddie goes on his merry way which leads him to the annual fantasy fair. It’s like a regular fair, but people wear tunics, and battle armor, and, wait for it, elf ears! 
It seems straightforward enough, but when Eddie wants to cross the bridge to the fairground he is stopped by a troll because he’s not wearing an appropriate costume.
I’m kinda sad about cutting this whole thing, because there were some great puns involved, and the following Monkey tribute.
Back in the game (mine, not Monkey Island), you would have the option to offer the troll a herring, provided you stopped by the polluted lake prior to visiting the fair. Obviously, in this case, the troll doesn’t care for a rotting, dead fish. It does turn out that the troll is actually Christa Jones when she flips back the mask and she tells you she’ll let you through if you—known for being a ladies’ man—arrange a date with Nita Perez for her.

Does that name ring a bell?
It was mentioned exactly once in the current version, and only in passing, by Greasy Frank at Century Motors. A few lines later, Eddie comes back at reception where Rooney mentions a strange thud that I never explain any further.

Until now!

Originally, Eddie returns to Century Motors to look for Nita Perez, who is the receptionist there. All he finds is a service bell and as is proven every single time I’m near such a bell, it needs to be pressed.
A disembodied voice promises she’ll be right there, but as Eddie keeps pressing the bell, the voice becomes annoyed and Eddie discovers Nita locked herself in the broom closet by accident when she wanted to have a sneaky smoke.
Believe it or not, the symbolism of a straight girl locked in a closet before she tries a date with a lesbian girl wasn’t intended.
Eventually, Eddie breaks her out of the closet and she agrees to go on the date. When Eddie returns to the fair, he finds the bridge free, and Christa nowhere to be found, save for some “bustling in the hedgerow”. He goes to check it out and finds Christa making out with Laura in various states of undress. 
This is where she tells him Mitch knows of her extracurricular activities and he’s fine with it. She also tells him that she gave the keys to Rosalie, who, as it turns out, was let in by Christa even though she didn’t have a costume. But like Eddie, Christa also has a thing for Rosalie.

From here on out it all gets a little more familiar. Eddie goes to Rosalie’s house, implodes at the front door, but manages to get the keys anyway.
Too bad the whole thing had to be cut for space and pacing. I rather enjoyed the jokes I put in there. Can’t win ‘em all, I suppose.