Her bio from the website:
|Hey. A bathtub. In the middle of the woods. This is the most labor-intensive form of littering I’ve ever seen.|
Rose has her encounter at a small lake. She finds a boat, gets in, and drifts along without visible means of propulsion. Her boat passes between two trees, and an apparition floats down from above. It’s a man, wreathed in clouds. He hovers above her boat. She flies up to meet him. Fade to black.
What. The. Crap?
|This maneuver is clearly in violation of established boat-safety protocol.|
Rose’s journey has a lot of water in it. There is a lot of stuff with steam and clouds, and her trip through Grandma’s house is packed with bathroom imagery. It rains at the lake and we hear running water in our trip through the house. Her rowboat is not unlike a bathtub, the only thing that changes is which side the water is on. Even when she is lifted above the boat towards the cloud-man, she doesn’t seem distressed or even upset. She’s just floating.
“[…] But who will protect sweet Rose herself, when she is lured off the path? With a promise of unearthly bliss, of light in abundance where no sun will ever shine? You’re just a little girl, Rose! Just a fragile little girl…”
|A girl is riding a boat between two trees with a man hovering between them. Dr. Freud could no doubt explain this image in a way that would offend everyone.|
She knows she’s attracted to men but she doesn’t know what men look like yet or how sex works. And thus her “man” is a cloud of steam, of which she will have plenty in the bathroom.
This is another part of growing up. We don’t usually talk about it because talking about kids and sexuality is pretty taboo, and also because there isn’t usually a need. Everyone seems to figure it out without any lasting trauma, although at the time a lot of people experience a sudden yet paradoxical desire to know about highly personal things you’d rather not discuss with other people, especially your family members.
This would explain why Rose’s encounter is so mystifying. If I had to tackle the idea of a pre-teen struggling with this issue – and I would need a gun to my head to do so – I would make the references as oblique as possible. It’s part of growing up, and its part of the journey on the path of life, but its not something that is discussed in polite company.
Rose has her head down as she walks to grandma’s. She’s probably feeling a bit of needless (albeit predictable) shame. Still, I think in the long run she’ll turn out fine. Well, as fine as everyone else in the species. She’s not hurt, anyway.
Since this completes the list of girls, I thought I’d mention some of the bits of gameplay that have been overlooked.
- The Map: There are these little icons that float around the edges of the screen. It’s easy to miss them with all of the other flitting marks that adorn the view, but they actually serve as a compass. There is an icon for each of the major locations in the game (one for each sister, where they encounter their wolf) and they are revealed as you play through. Just turn until the desired icon is at the center-top of the screen and run straight ahead. You’ll get there. The forest girl has an icon that looks like a swirl, so you can find her as well. There are also icons for the lesser locations (the well, car, bathtub, etc) but they usually only appear in special circumstances.
- The Flowers: Everyone was asking what the point was of collecting all 144 flowers. Some suggested it was just satire: A deliberately pointless achievement. But they do serve an in-game purpose. I noticed that every twelve flowers, it gives you a hint about where you should go. Note that this carries over between girls. Any time the counter is a multiple of 12, one of the key locations will appear on your “compass” so you can find it. (You’ll hear some singing voices when this happens.) I noticed it happening a few times, but I’m not 100% sure this is how it works.
- The light through the trees can help you find important locations. All six of the destinations will appear as a bloom of white light through the trees once you’re close enough.
Well, this has been an interesting series. I didn’t think about how much time it would take when I started. Still, watching an engineer explain art is probably like watching an interpretive dancer design integrated circuits. We’ll all be much happier once we get back to discussing more concrete things.
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