I don't think I worked out the puzzle, but I think I somehow managed to "solve" it when I accidentally left a word out of my response. Unless there's something I'm missing here? I wish there was some way to put what I did under a spoiler, but I think I'm misunderstanding the required syntax to solve this puzzle somehow.
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Hey, I got ALL the bonuses first time through without intending to! I guess I just think in a way that a chaotic Nopperabou would approve of. Super fun, even though I also had the issue where I guessed without the article and became momentarily frustrated.
Full disclosure: I banged out the ending text in the hours between 11pm and the 3am deadline, so I really should bugtest the endings more carefully tomorrow.
Important question: were you inside or outside the mansion when stuff caught fire?
Encountered a rather baffling response:
>mix pumpkin / TypeError: Cannot read property '0' of undefined
I did figure out how to mix (acting on the container, not the ingredient), but that was a new one. Other than that, charming game with an easy to understand goal that rewards clever attention. And fun use of humorous footnotes.
Finishing this game for the first time and then seeing the cover art again made me laugh out loud as it suddenly came together. This was the first Ectocomp submission I played, because your tagline charmed me so thoroughly. I'm only a little disappointed that I'm not the one who gets to slither in this story.
There are two keys in the game. Try looking under some things which someone might hypothetically slip a key under for safekeeping.
And hah, yeah! Discovering that project last year singlehandedly launched me into the world of text adventures/IF, which I wasn't even aware of before. Lemon Demon all-game-type jam when?