The Penvellyns are a wealthy family in London, England who have owned Blackmoor Manor since its creation in the 14th Century. They were rumored to carry a dark secret.
In the 17th Century, a baby showed up at the manor and was named Elinor Penvellyn. Eventually, she was rumored among the town to be a "fairy baby" and had supposedly turned her husband into the Beast of Blackmoor (a creature with red eyes and giant fangs) for finding out too much about the secret. She was burned at the stake in 1650, putting another dark mark on the family's legacy. The Penvellyns fled to France during this dark time, but by 1715 they were back at Blackmoor and a celebrated name once again.
As Nancy's investigation at Blackmoor Manor concludes, she learns that the Penvellyn family secret is a mysterious, heavily guarded meteorite that Randulf the Red, the founder of the Penvellyn family, believed granted him special strength in battle. His son, Odo, was a better farmer than a warrior, but Odo's son Milo proved to be a great warrior like Randulf, so Randulf believed that the qualities needed to be able to use the stone skipped every other generation. This began a centuries-long tradition of telling the first born of every other generation in the family the Penvellyn secret, and getting them to add a puzzle in Blackmoor Manor to block the process of obtaining it. The "initiation process" would begin no sooner than the initiate's 12th birthday.
Unlike other families that just have a single coat of arms, each member of the Penvellyn family gets their own, and the initiated ones usually hide a clue to discovering the treasure in theirs.
Albert Penvellyn built the forge underneath the manor and the rotating rooms in front of them. Charles employed the Bossiny family to tutor the Penvellyns and initiate them into their secret, so that it would never be lost, even if there were no Penvellyns at the time to teach it. He also wove the tapestry in Jane's room and added the puzzle above her doorway. Thomas built the musical staircase and the puzzle that redirects the water to flow into the well. Elinor locked the Mercury column and made a puzzle out of her hidden alarm system to move the statue that James built, releasing the wand key to the column. Corbin (who was thought to have never lived at the manor, but notes in the forge show that he had secretly returned) added a gargoyle as the way to get into one of the secret passageways (and probably the "curse" puzzle beyond it) and designed the magnet system of using the wand on the gargoyles in order to light the forge. Penelope added the lock to the Venus column and hid the arrowhead key to it in her card game machine, Betty, which she commissioned to be built in 1775. She also added the puzzle in the forge that involved moving the statue in order to "capture the wind". Brigitte put a password on Betty in order to get her to give the key as a prize, and designed all the puzzles in her room that lead to seeing the password on the wall, and also locked the moon column and hid its key in her room. Edward added the dragon that led to the east passageway and the slide that held the Saturn column key. John added the puzzle on the well based on the short story he wrote and locked the Mars column, hiding the key in the well puzzle. He also brought Loulou back from the Amazon and set up a puzzle involving her. Alan set up his computer to trigger the "ghost hunt" puzzle, giving the clue on how to access Edward's hidden slide upon completion.
In 1912, John Penvellyn was presented The Amateur Plant Hybridizers Association of Great Britain's trophy award for Outstanding Achievement, by their president, Maurice Termilliger. He created many different plants, even a series of carnivorous plants. Leticia Drake now enthusiastically takes care of all the plants in the conservatory.
Nigel Mookerjee talks about some of the books in the library: for the Law Books (16th Century), "I doubt you'll find much of interest in there; they're mainly law books. Charles Penvellyn was a prominent judge in the 16th century. Sad to say, he lost his son at a young age. Left his estate to his grandson, Thomas." for the Novels (18th Century), "Those are mainly Penelope Penvellyn's collections of French novels. She was a patron to a raft of artists, and her salon was quite popular. She was quite the libertine, even kept her maiden name after her marriage." and for the Old Manuscripts (14th and 15th century), "Those Manuscripts are very old and brittle. They date back to the 14th century. Odo Penvellyn collected most of them. His Father Randulf and son Milo were rather more interested in military victories than in book collecting." He also talks about Alan, "Alan Penvellyn was a noted researcher in computers and languages."
Nancy can find the Penvellyn family tree in Jane's room and ask her about anyone on it. Below are the members and Jane's statements.
The oldest child is in bold while those of every other generation (those who protect the treasure) are also italicized. The child's siblings are under them indented.
- Randulf ( - 1401) Randulf the Red, so named for his bright red hair, was considered a hero at the Battle of Poitiers. For his heroism, King Edward III awarded him with the lands in the region called "Penvellyn". That's how we got our name. His coat of arms says "IN HOC SIGNO" which translates to "in this sign (you will conquer)"
- Odo (1354 - 1404) Yeah, he isn't very exciting, really. Liked farming and cows. His son Milo is much more interesting. His coat of arms says "PROSPERITAS" which translates to "success".
- Annor (1356-1379) He was Odo's brother.
- Simon (1358-1411) He lived from 1358 to 1412 - no, 1411. We don't know very much about him.
- Agatha (1361 - 1415) She was a nun. I think she lived in Ireland.
- Margery (1363 - 1371) She died when she was a little girl. It was really sad.
- Guydo (1364 - 1433) He made pizza. No, I'm joking, of course. I don't know anything about him except that he died in 1433 because he outlived all of his siblings.
- Milo (1376 - 1423) Milo inherited not only his grandfather's red hair but his military prowess. Milo was instrumental in the Siege of Caen and was awarded even more lands by Henry V. His coat of arms says "VICTUM INVIDEO SILENTE" which translates to "the conquered shall envy the dead".
- Cecilia (1378 - 1450) She married the Lord of Limerick and did a lot of needlework. She had a ton of kids, too. Like 20!! Can you imagine?
- Jacobus (1381 - 1390) He died when he was, like, 9.
- Hugo (1401 - 1466) Um, he had a lot of kids, and his dates were 1401 to 1466. His coat of arms says "CITO FIT QUOD DEI VOLUNT" which translates to "what the gods want happens soon".
- Albert (1427 - 1508) He was very mysterious and the people of Blackmoor were afraid of him because he knew all these scientific things. No one knows much about him, though. His coat of arms says "TIMENDI CAUSA EST NESCIRE" which translates to "ignorance is the cause of fear".
- Josephus (1428 - 1481) Yeah, they used a lot of Latin names back then and weird spellings. He became, like a priest or pason or something.
- Robertus (1428 - 1458) He was a knight but died in some kind of jousting tournament. He was twins with Josephus.
- Lucia (1430 - 1467) Isn't that a pretty name? If I have a daughter, I'll name her that.
- Adam (1431 - 1442) Uh, like he married Eve, duh! No, kidding. I actually don't know anything about him. I think he was the son of Hugo, though, but I forget.
- Anicia (1433 - 1509) A nun.
- Jenet (1435 - 1496) It's 'Jenet'. I think he wrote plays, maybe? I dunno, I forget.
- Jone (1435 - 1516) No, that's how they spelled it then. She got married to this Duke somewhere in Flanders.
- Edmund (1447 - 1499) He was into cows. He did a lot of breeding of cows and sheep and got some kind of award from the King. His coat of arms says "UT SEMENTUM FECERIS ITA METES" which translates to "As you sow, so shall you reap".
- Nicholina (1448 - 1451) She died when she was a baby. I have many ancestors who died young, but Ethel said that Penvellyns in general live a long time.
- Walter (1449 - 1471) Um, he was born in 1448, or 9. I'm kind of bored of doing this right now.
- Marge (1451 - 1520) I forget. I think she was...I dunno.
- Charles (1478 - 1553) Ooh, ooh - Charles was a very famous judge and wrote very important books on law. But his boy, Garrett, drowned when he was really young. His coat of arms says "MINIMA MAXIMA SUNT" which translates to "The smallest things are the most important".
- Gillian (1501 - 1584) She married the Duke of Balingsford, but she stayed at Blackmoor to raise her son, Thomas, who inherited the estate when his grandfather, Charles, died.
- Garrett (1501 - 1520) He drowned on his 19th birthday.
- Thomas (1526 - 1584) He was Charles' grandson and wrote a lot of poetry. He also had 3 wives: Catherine, Anne and Mary. But not like at the same time. They died and he just remarried. His coat of arms says "AGE PRO VIRIBUS" which translates to "in all that you do, do your best".
- James (1560 - 1650) He never married but one day, when he was very old, a baby was found on the doorstep to the manor. He took her in and raised her as his own. That was Elinor. His coat of arms says "ARS LONGA" which translates to "art lives long" (from the phrase, ars longa vita brevis - art is long, life is short).
- Francis (1562 - 1604) He got into a big fight with his brother, James, and lived in France.
- Elizabeth (1563 - 1584) Like, the Queen of England? Oh, you mean Elizabeth - my ancestor. It's weird that she's the only ancestor named Elizabeth since it's such a popular name.
- Jeffrey (1565 - 1628) I'd rather not. I'm kind of bored. Wouldn't you rather play a game?
- George (1566 - 1611) Um, he liked lived and died. End of story.
- Elinor (1626 - 1650) Just that she was burned as a witch but it wasn't true and her father, James, died when he saw her die and then the family fled to France. I don't want to talk about this. Her coat of arms says "AUDACES FORTUNA IUVAT" which translates to "fortune favors the bold".
- Edward (1646 - 1704) He lived in France with his father, Le Comte de Roquefort. He was very interested in languages and translated books from Greek and Latin.
- Virginie (1648 - 1666) She was married to the Duke of Barrowbold and died in the Great Fire of London.
- Francois (1649 - 1710) He was a dwarf and became a trusted confidant to Louis XIV. Little people often held positions of great esteem at that time.
- Corbin (1670 - 1741) Uh...I dunno. He doesn't have a coat of arms in the Great Hall because he didn't live here; wasn't even a British subject. That's all I know. His French coat of arms says "NUNQUAM DEDISCEO" which translates to "never forget".
- Helene (1673 - 1760) *Sigh* Can we stop soon? Helene married the Duke of Boueville and died in 1760. End of story.
- Frederic (1674 - 1702) He was a soldier - for the French. He was killed in the war of Spanish Succession in July of 1702.
- Colin (1677 - 1701) Oh, this is so, so cool. They say he was a spy for England even though he lived in France. Isn't that so very? I'd like to be a spy.
- Philippe (1689 - 1777) He made a fortune in the New World and bought back most of the lands that were confiscated by Cromwell. His coat of arms says "NOVUS MUNDUS" which translates to "a new world".
- Theophile (1690 - 1781) He lived most of his life on the island of Mauritius and discovered, like, a million plant species.
- Brigitte (1691 - 1789) She was absolutely mad about cricket - the game, not the insect. She actually saw the first cricket match in 1744. Personally, I can't stand the sport.
- Penelope (1714 - 1783) I don't know very much about her, except that she was very loved by practically everyone in England, and there were a million poems written about her. If I have a boyfriend, I'd never let him write a poem about me. Blech. Her coat of arms says "PULCHRITUDO IN OMNIA" which translates to "there is beauty in all things".
- George (1715 - 1751) and Henri (1717 - 1751) They were lost at sea. I guess they traveled a lot to Canada, especially to Oak Island.
- Marianne (1720 - 1789) Um, she got shipwrecked on this deserted island with a whole bunch of yahoos and they wrote a story about it. Yeah, that's it.
- Jean (1722 - 1741) Hello - it's pronounced 'Jean'. He was killed by a boar on a hunting trip. They eat people's flesh, you know. No, I'm kidding. But he really did get eaten by a boar. Serves him right, though, for hunting some poor little animal.
- Martha (1739 - 1791) She was completely daft - she'd wear really bizarre outfits and she was one of the first women to ride on a steam train. Her coat of arms says "SINE SCIENTIA ARS NIHIL EST" which translates to "without understanding, art is nothing".
- John (1741 - 1782) He was an opera singer, just like my Mom. He sang in some Mozart operas, I think.
- Brigitte (1759 - 1833) She never married and was bonkers for astronomy; she adopted her sister's son, Richard, who later got killed at Waterloo. Her coat of arms says "LUDI SINE GAUDIO LUDI NON SUNT" which translates to "sport without fun is not sport".
- Peter (1762 - 1804) Um, let's see - he had a wooden leg and he was attacked by wolves once. That's all I remember.
- Isabelle (1763 - 1801) That was Isabelle. She wrote many letters about the French Revolution and actually saw Marat's dead body in the bathtub. Talk about gross!
- Jacques (1764 - 1841) Don't laugh, but he invented the lawnmower bag in 1831. I swear, I'm totally not making this up.
- Richard (1787 - 1815) He died in Waterloo fighting against Napoleon. His coat of arms says "SI SIC OMNES" which translates to "if only this could last forever".
- Edward (1809 - 1904) He was a big explorer and went all over the world. He wasn't very close with his son, who was also an explorer. They'd only see each other by chance in weird remote places like Samarkand or Walla Walla. His coat of arms says "BIS VIVAT QUI BON VIVAT" which translates to "Whoever lives well lives twice".
- Caroline (1810 - 1844) Caroline was a chemist and helped identify the element lanthanum. I'm not sure what the element does. I think it's a heavy metal.
- William (1811 - 1814) He was Edward's little brother. He named his son after him.
- William (1833 - 1901) He was an explorer, just like his father. He was kind of a whiner, so I heard. His coat of arms says "DIES PERDIDI" which translates to "another day wasted".
- Cassandra (1834 - 1903) and Hector (1834 - 1882) Uh huh. Cassandra was totally obsessed with lawn tennis and was one of the first people in England to have a court installed in her home. Hector was the first ball boy.
- Sophia (1828 - 1909) She was a big collector of Impressionist artwork, but most of it was destroyed in a fire.
- Arthur (1840 - 1910) He lived in the wild west in the Americas and was a bandit with El Diablo's gang!
- Cynthia (1850 - 1949) I don't know. I'm kind of tired right now.
- Catherine (1851 - 1952) She lived the longest of any Penvellyn. I hope I live that long, but not if I'm all like creaky and cranky.
- Rose (1855 - 1941) It's a real sad story. She and her granddaughter, Rachel, lived in France during the War and were killed.
- John (1873 - 1954) He was this huge naturalist and did a lot of exploration in the Amazon. I think there's a plant named after him, or maybe a monkey; I forget. His coat of arms says "PER AURES AD ANIMUM" which translates to "through the ears to the spirit".
- Malachi (1894 - 1972) He was a doctor of medicine and did a lot of research on icky skin diseases. Happily, I'm blessed with perfect skin. His coat of arms says "NUMEN LUMEN" which translates to "divine light is my guide".
- Obadiah (1895 - 1975) He lived in the US for most of his life and married this weird woman named Eustacia. She's still alive and sometimes calls us - she's totally creepy.
- Rachel (1895 - 1941) She died in France during the war. I guess she worked for the French resistance.
- Esther (1897 - 1951) *Sigh* Esther Penvellyn Romberg, born in 1897 and died in 1951. Her friends called her Polly.
- Nahum (1898 - 1911) He died in the flu epidemic.
- Alan (1923 - 1993) He was my grandfather but I didn't know him because he died when I was little. I guess he was nice. His coat of arms says "PURGAMENTUM EXIT" which translates to "garbage out" (referencing part of a programmers' saying "garbage in, garbage out").
- Leticia (1925 - ) Loves plants, hates noise. You can ask her about it. She's usually in the conservatory with her plants.
Secrets Can Kill: Remastered Edit
The library search engine it says that John Penvellyn's book, Grenny and the Water Fairy, is available, and that Charles Penvellyn wrote one called The Journal of Charles Penvellyn.