With a very literal deadline in the form of a meteor heading directly for John’s house, John needs to figure out how to work the totem lathe and the cruxtrader. After some fumbling around (and avoiding his dad, who is trying to work out how the bathtub got moved to the staircase) he manages to get to the cruxtrader and retrieve the cruxite dowel from the living room, stick it in the lathe and create a random shape. How this is going to keep him from getting squished by a meteor is not yet clear.
John heads back to ask tentacleTherapist what to do, but she is not available, and it turns out that the connection has been lost. Apparently, something very serious is going on wherever she lives. This is a very bad thing, as there is a countdown.
Next, we are introduced to John’s friend Rose Lalonde, whose pesterchum handle is tentacleTherapist. She’s a girl with a lot of strange interests (she is apparently a fan of both Freud and chthonic tentacle horrors, fantasy, writing, and knitting). She is waging a passive aggressive war to end all wars with her mother, who is apparently an alcoholic former scientist who plays at being a 50s sitcom housewife sans a husband.
The narrator attempts to make Rose do something stupid, but Rose resists. She does however, cooperate with the suggestion that she play the violin (which is wasting precious time needed to rescue John from Imminent Doom). We briefly have a scene of John being a derp before returning to Rose who is doing various things that don’t immediately seem to have anything to do with what’s going on.
It turns out that Rose is attempting to renew her connection by moving to a new location. We get a look out the window (where we see a tiny mausoleum that Rose’s mom built for Rose’s pet cat Jaspers, and a laboratory. It is currently raining, and we see a streak of something that is way too red to be lightning–meteors are starting to fall where she is as well as where John is.
Next, we learn that just as John’s dad has a thing for harlequins, Rose’s mom apparently has an obsession for wizards as there are many, many pictures and statues of the same all over the house. We also get some more details of the war of passive aggressive one-upmanship that Rose and her mother are engaged in. Rose heads up to the observatory, has trouble with her sylladex and then sees that there are now many, many meteors falling near her location.
Rose manages to get reconnected so she can help John. John is panicking because the timer has seconds left. We learn that the totem is needed to use the alchemiter to create a free item. (In John’s case, it’s an apple.) John creates the tree that grows the apple.
Then we have the end of act one animation. While the SBurb music is playing we see John looking up as the meteor is coming down. We get a panoramic view of John’s house, then a scene of John looking up while the meteor is going down. Then we see an explosion.
The next scene features an apocalyptic desert with ruins in the background. (We’re told that this scene takes place, “Years in the future, but not many.”) We are introduced to a Wayward Vagabond who is either extremely iconic in appearance, or who is not human.
After this brief introduction we view the beginning of Rose’s walkthrough of the game, then we switch back to John in a second animation. This animation reveals that John has somehow survived the impact and his entire house has been moved someplace else, at the top of a long skinny mesa. John’s kernelsprite divides into two, and we see that a number of shapes have appeared in the sky above John’s house. John now has a sprite that looks like a jester. We also see that John may not be alone, because we can see glowing eyes in the shadows.
While all of this is happening, the observer-narrator attempts to contact John, but John remains unaware of the observer. The observer continues to try getting John’s attention but John is too busy being freaked out by the events which have just transpired.
There is another game feature at this point. It provides some information for what’s going on. After doing some exploring, we discover that John’s dad has disappeared or been kidnapped. John eventually becomes slightly annoyed that the narrator-observer keeps calling him “boy” instead of by his name (though he is only aware of the narrator in a very “meta” sense).
John heads to his room, where he finds his friends are trying (and still able) to contact him via his pesterchum. After some conversation with Rose, we discover that meteors have been falling all over the place, generally directed at people’s homes. (And we know from the brief scene with the Wayward Vagabond that these meteors will eventually Destroy Civilization and Probably Also the World.)