I think I've got it now. here my thoughts in case anyone wants to use it..
Mystery: Robot Santa
Truth: After the kids tinkered with a presumed out of order robot, the actually working robot goes mad and thinks it is santa clause. But his damaged programming causes it to steal presents rather than bringing them. The kids will come to the conclusion, that this could be, because they talked about christmas and santa clause while tinkering with it.
Intro Kids: 1 Scene per Kid (optional), alternatively 1 Scene in school. -> Scene in the basement, where the kids secretly tinker with a damaged robot used for xy (maybe cleaning or sth.)
- Rumors / evidence of multiple burglaries in the last night, but nothing is missing. The "thief" seemed to come through the chimney
- An NPC kid tells, that he knows where his parents hide the presents, but they are all gone
Solving the Mystery:
- Kids search their houses for hidden presents -> the presents are gone
- Police -> won't give the kids any info about the burglaries
- ask NPC kids -> Their presents are also gone. One kid has seen santa this night, climbing through a chimney of a house. This is odd, because it is not christmas yet
- Kids could sneak outside in the night (possible trouble: parents will still be awake) -> Wil see "santa" climbing into a chimney, coming out with presents. Kids will recognize santa as the robot they tinkered with
- Kids can follow him to his "hideout" in the school basement, in a secret room they don't know, because it is always locked
- Kids should reason, that it was their tinkering and talking about santa, that caused his behaviour, maybe robot santa says something leading to this conclusion, words or sentences the kids used
- The robot doesn't act on his own, in fact the school janitor saw the kids tinkering with it, and heard them talking about christmas.
- The janitor then reprogrammed the robot to steal the presents
- The janitor did this, because he hates christmas, as a kid he never got any presents because his family was very poor
- Rumors / evidence about burglaries, but only the christmas presents were stolen
- Robot santa appears
- When kids follow santa, the janitor will notice them
- Janitor tries to scare the kids away
- Janitor goes completely mad and locks the kids in the school basement until he figures out what he should do next
- Janitor notices the kids investigating the case
- First he tries to scare them away, maybe he has programmed "santa" to react to such a situation
- He captures the kids and locks them away in the school basement
- Leave the solution of this to the players, they should come up with something. possible options are though:
- Break free, run away, call the police. Police will show up, arrest the janitor, deactivate the robot and claim all the kudos for solving the burglaries
- Kids try to calm down the janitor and find out the reasons for his behaviour. From there on, again multiple options:
- Break free, run away, see above.
- Befriend the janitor, convince him his behaviour was wrong, maybe promise to bring him a nice present, or promise to organize a christmas party for him (would be so cool if the players come to this..)
- The kids could reprogram the robot to return all presents to the correct houses (<- preferred, because on christmas eve all kids will really see how santa brings all the presents)
- If they called the police, the police tries their best to return the presents, but this would be a long process, so on christmas eve not all presents will be returned, and the ones they managed to return, are maybe not the correct ones.
Change (Maybe I will skip this part, depending on how long the session takes):
- A scene with the kids playing outside / inside with some of their presents, other kids talk about that they saw santa [police-option: talk about getting wierd presents / no presents]