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"Usher II" is about censorship . William Stendahl is a book lover who has retreated to Mars after the government confiscated and destroyed his vast collection. On Mars, he constructs his image of the perfect haunted mansion, complete with mechanical creatures, creepy soundtracks, and thousands of tons of poison to kill every living thing in the surrounding area. He is assisted by Pikes, a film aficionado and former actor whose collection was confiscated and destroyed by the government and who was subsequently banned from performing. When the "Moral Climate Monitors" come to visit, Stendahl and Pikes arrange to kill each of them in ways that allude to different horror masterpieces, culminating in the murder of Inspector Garrett in a sequence reminiscent of Edgar Allan Poe 's " The Cask of Amontillado ". Once Stendahl's persecutors are dead, he and Pikes watch from a helicopter as the house crumbles and sinks into the lake as in Poe’s short story " The Fall of the House of Usher ". At the end of this story, Poe (or Stendahl) hint that the "Moral Climate Monitors" could have avoided these deaths if they had only read the books they banned, since then they would have recognized what was happening to them.