After a rocky start, Raleigh freelance copy editor Ashley Mason left "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire" with $17,550, not bad for less than 15 minutes work.
With a $35,000 pot, Mason ended up taking the safe route and opting for leaving with half her jackpot. The question that stumped her:
In 1908 in the Superior Motel in Montana, what amenity was added to hotel service for the first time?
The answer was: the Gideon Bible. Mason narrowed it down to the Bible or turndown service, but wasn't sure. Asking the audience, her last lifeline, didn't help; they split on the same two answers, 40 percent and 44 percent.
Mason's debut on the show was interrupted by a breaking news report on WTVD showing a completed car chase on I-540. She had passed on two questions before than and was just about to successfully nail her first question, when the station broke to the news report.
By the time, the show returned she'd earned $25,000, and used two of her lifelines.