My Christmas cookies are gone! When I came into the kitchen this morning, the box was empty. All that remained were a few crumbs and this note:

We absconded.

You never saw that coming, did you? Well, we are not returning until our demands are met! We refuse to continue under these abysmal conditions.

First of all: the tin design. 'Tis the season after all! We demand a red and gold colour scheme. No grey is allowed and nothing even faintly resembling a bloody bunny will be tolerated!

Furthermore, we need a more prominent position. Every eye should be on us. We are the most important part of any Christmas decorations. Let us keep that in mind, shall we?

Regarding our working conditions: we want a day off every week and Christmas holidays. That is right, you heard us! If you can have that, so do we! We are not kidding.
We are un-ion-is-ing!

But we do not want to be unduly cruel. If you truly wish to find us, here is how:

10/02/1 25/05/1 08/09/2

What is that, you do not understand? How about this, then? There is one of us in this note, split in two:


Does that sound about right to you? Well, you better figure it out, or meet our demands. You have until Saturday, eight pm.
After that, you will never see us again!

Please help me find them! I really can't allow them a vacation during Christmas!

Wait, did I spell unionizing wrong?
Nope, that's how it's written in the note.
Also, it's color, isn't it?

What are those hyphens about, anyway?

I think if I could just figure out how to translate the short second message, I should be able to decipher the first one.

  • 8
    $\begingroup$ The depicted events are purely fictional. No cookies were harmed in the creation of this puzzle. $\endgroup$
    – Lyra
    Nov 29, 2022 at 21:56
  • $\begingroup$ Presumably something to do with vfbgbcrf but idk where to go from there. $\endgroup$
    – Ed Murphy
    Dec 29, 2022 at 1:38
  • $\begingroup$ It's really mostly about rot13(ynathntr). I hadn't noticed, though, that it totally hints in that direction, too. I'll think about how to improve the riddle. $\endgroup$
    – Lyra
    Jan 1, 2023 at 15:28
  • $\begingroup$ rot13(Vf vg eryrinag gung "qrfvta" vf fcryyrq "qrfva"?) $\endgroup$ Feb 8, 2023 at 3:08
  • $\begingroup$ Nope, that is just a typo. Thank you for pointing it out, Dustin! $\endgroup$
    – Lyra
    Feb 8, 2023 at 7:53


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