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Someone Who Can Make a Riddle Out of an Answer


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"Ah, Lord Sunderland," the King greeted as the Northern Secretary joined him on the morning walk.  "Have you a solution for us?"

"Your Majesty, I have taken the Hobbes letter to our best cipher.  The paired numbers are obviously meant to be words.  We are used to numbers equating to letters but the pairing is a complexity.  We have thought to subtract one from the other, or to add them, to create an alphabet, but the words created thereby generate nonsense.  We have broken out the numbers individually or paired them with like-minded mates, to no avail.  We considered that his words might be in Latin, but they made no consistent sense.  It is better to assume they are in English unless Mr. Hobbes preferred to teach his former pupils one last lesson in dead languages.  Tis not Greek either, nor Hebrew."

"You need simply state that you have not solved the riddle my lord."

"We have not yet solved it.  We have even considered astrological signs."

"We had thought that the Northern Secretary would have the best means to solve a code.  Apparently not."

"We will find the solution Majesty.  We need to find the codex."

"What of Buckingham and Devonshire?"

"My men report they are equally perplexed."

"Why would Hobbes present us with a riddle so difficult for us to solve my Lord Sunderland?  Surely, there is a simple solution that you are ignoring."

"It might be a test Your Majesty, to see which of you three might solve it."

"If it is, then we shall be the first to solve it.  It shall please me if we do.  It shall be otherwise if we do not."

Sunderland stopped and bowed to his monarch.  "It is best that I return to its solution then."



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