The Wyvern Mystery | 2000
Adaptation of J. Sheridan Le Fanu's gothic horror novel, set in rural 1820s England. Alice Maybell marries the heir to a local estate only to find herself embroiled in the dark secrets of the past and evil ambitions of the present.
In Part 1, the child Alice, newly orphaned, is taken under the wing of Squire Fairfield. Twelve years go by and Alice, now grown up, is a prospective mate in the lascivious eyes of the Squire. No sooner does he propose than the gallant Charles Fairfield, the Squire's son, spirits Alice to a church for preemptory nuptials. Charles' brother, Harry, assists. Fleeing the Squire's hold, the newlyweds move to remote Carwell Grange, where Charles manifests increasingly strange behavior. Soon Alice is pregnant and afflicted with nightmares. One night a madwoman bursts through the wall, threatens Alice with a knife and then stabs Charles while claiming she is his wife.
In Part 2, Alice, shocked into labor by the incident with the deranged Vrau, delivers a boy. Fearing infection, Charles' doctor sends the newborn to a wet nurse in a nearby village, against Alice's protests. Both Charles and the child soon die, and Alice is denied an inheritance by the Squire. Adding to the turmoil is news from Harry that the Squire was no friend to her father, but rather hastened his death. Alice is devastated, and following a blistering confrontation with the Squire, cuts off all ties with Wyvern Manor.
Five years later, Alice quietly pays her annual visit to her baby's grave. Stopping briefly at her childhood home, she encounters the Squire, a visibly broken man, murmuring incoherently. Shaken, she meets Harry, who now controls the family estates. He is friendly but evasive when Alice tries to pin him down on newly discovered inconsistencies in the events surrounding her child's death. Suspecting that the boy may still be alive, she begins a search for clues -- a quest that takes her to the hidden cell of the dangerously demented Vrau.