Greetings fellow puzzlers and puzzled alike! I’ve concocted a little puzzle for you all... Well little may be an understatement, but I'll come back to that.

Before starting, you should know that the only materials you'll ever need for this puzzle are as follows:

  • A device compatible with a search engine such as Google, Firefox, etc. and a steady internet connection

  • A brain (preferably inside the person)

  • And a knowledge of death and decay! [An ominous crescendo plays out slowly]

This puzzle has been divided into several parts, or gates, as I fondly call them, and each gate leads to a name. Additionally, each gate may contain clues for the gates beyond it, so keep an eye out! Each gate has a name as well, which may be a warning/instruction for the puzzle within, or, who knows, it's just claptrap!

This is the first gate of a series of 'N' gates of climbing difficulties. 'N,' because I haven't decided how many there should be yet, it would depend on how long each solution takes to show up. (And if I can keep up with school's reopening.)

All my best to the puzzlers, start your engines, and let the games begin! [Maniacal cackling follows]

The First Gate: Why So Tense?

_ _ _ _

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

You’ve heard so many riddles, and here’s a—nother,

About a marvellous mind and an alias, a cover,

Who isn't afraid of the police, they can come if they dare!

She'll probably be crafting plans in her lair!

A criminal mastermind, yet her hands are pristine,

Perhaps it’s because the others dirty the scene!

Oui, it’s for her they commit Dastardly deeds,

And it’s for her they get eventually caught,

Yet once behind bars, they say her name not!

The last syllable of one of the catchers,

May not help with just this case, but still, now, can you snatch her?

A Bonus Round

_ _ _ _ _ _ _

Hint 1

Each hint may not appear like this, should any be required. Think out of the box!

Post Script (Not A Hint)

Thank you for taking interest in this puzzle! I came up with the first gate yesterday, but it took some time to get the formatting just right, and any feedback, positive or not so in nature, is appreciated. I plan on incorporating all kinds of puzzling skillsets as the gates go on, so consider it my humble challenge to entire the puzzling community!

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Umm quick question, do you want the aforementioned alias or the real name? (if I am reading the puzzle correctly) $\endgroup$
    – Bewilderer
    Commented Mar 13, 2019 at 2:03
  • $\begingroup$ Good question @Bewilderer. Each underscore is meant for a single letter only, and that peculiar dash in 'a—nother' is supposed to be an em dash, in case there is any confusion. That's all I'll say. :) $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 13, 2019 at 9:52
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ The name of the gate and the number of letters makes me think (ROT13) cnfg cnegvpvcyr, but I can't see how it would fit the rest of the clues. $\endgroup$
    – CactusCake
    Commented Apr 26, 2019 at 21:41
  • $\begingroup$ In the first gate, 'ir' is bolded and 'er' is in italics. $\endgroup$
    – Duck
    Commented Jun 27, 2019 at 2:43
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I'm getting some Vaqvnan Wbarf vibes here, because of N oenva (cersrenoyl vafvqr gur crefba), Naq n xabjyrqtr bs qrngu naq qrpnl!, and gur nantenz envqre, all of which kind of would fit with that. Thus, I am tempted to say Ryfn Fpuarvqre, but that's one letter off. $\endgroup$
    – Chipster
    Commented Dec 15, 2020 at 4:54

3 Answers 3


This is probably not part of the answer, but I'd just like to confirm that.

The First Gate

is the first stage of Death in Sabriel, part of the Old Kingdom series.

A knowledge of death

Sabriel does have this in particular.

That's all I have.


I think the clues points to:

Wanda Maximoff / The Scarlett Witch / Elizabeth Olsen


The word «marvellous» is giving a hint towards the Marvel Universe

The title «Why so Tense», points to grammar. In French (Oui), -ir and -er are the most common word ending in the first tense: infinitive

There is a Marvel movie called «Infinity War»

Wanda Maximoff is fitting with the clues. Pristine hands - she is using powers from her hands to fight, but never had any physical contact. Criminal - she has a past as villain. Sokovia accord - The agreement where the Avengers agree to been taken as prisoners

  • $\begingroup$ Not the answer, but this is a great try! $\endgroup$ Commented Jan 21, 2023 at 16:12

I'm just going to guess due to the clues there are.

The person might be

Airy Esdeedsder . . . I don't think this name is common - if it is a name?

Why the letters?

The "a" has a dash splitting it from the word. "ir" is bolded. "oui" is French for yes, while the rest is in English. "deeds" is the only word without a rhyme. "d" is capitalized. "er" is the last syllable of catcher.

Why the name?

Well, there are 14 letters with a split of 4-10. There are 14 letters from the clues, so it would make sense to add a space after the fourth letter.

  • $\begingroup$ While it's not the answer, nice job catching the 'irregularities' in the text! $\endgroup$ Commented Jan 29, 2023 at 10:14

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