# Room 213: Because of the Reindeer

Credit: Brandon X.

This is part of a larger riddle room puzzle. Other rooms:

Once you enter the door labeled “3”, the door immediately shuts behind you. You are immediately in a room of darkness. The intercom picks up again: “Congratulations on getting into the next chamber, whether by chance or by skill. You have proceeded to the next challenge that awaits you!” The intercom shuts off quickly and the lights turn back on. After you are momentarily blinded, your vision clears and you find yourself somehow in the middle of a white room with some yellowish lighting.

You look ahead of you. You see 4 doors, like before, but they have different labels that last time. They are labeled Blitzen, Donner, Vixen, and Carol.

You see this room as a kind of war base, It’s not from any time period you recognize, or really any country. The insignia are odd. There are flags all around the room, with a strange insignia you do not recognize: a reindeer upon a sea of blue.

There are 4 tables around you, covered in what appear to be historical documents. Well, four of them. The first one has the buttons, as usual. But not only that: it also had a slip of paper on it:

“This room is themed about the lesser known book called Because of the Reindeer, a fictional book about revolutions on the North Pole, with the elves against the reindeer, four of which are listed above. Your job is to find the traitor.”

You look across to the closest table. The first thing that catches your eye is a diary-Rudolph’s diary, with primo mendacem on the cover. You flipped to the bookmarked page. There are only a few lines in it:

“... I may not be able to Do this, to write Over and over again. ‘Tis Not because of any issues of time, rather, it is about my condition- this disease. I shall Not be able to fight, due to this virus taking over me. I may not be able to fight Evermore, Thought I, but I shall Rest, at peace, the war done.

“Soon, my medic, Holly, came over to give me medicine. She told me that the traitor could be found in the lower case. I turned to look, but she whispered, ‘Not now! At two!’ as she indicated to a clock on the ‘table of secrets’.”

You look over. There is a dagger, a simple one. The plaque(with the Ofgelenkt Institute logo upon it), reads:

“This was the prized dagger of Rudolph during the North Pole Revolution. When it was forged by Vixen, Rudolph requested it to be as simple as possible. However, it was enchanted with heavy magic to make it the hardest blade possible. Nothing could shatter it, and it could cut almost everything. It was later passed down and eventually was used to kill Carol.”

You examine it closely. On the handle, there is an owl, as well as an inscription:

“Le tonnerre ne trahit pas”

There are several war medallions on the table.

• Bravest Soldier(to Donner)-a phoenix is on the back
• Loyal Comrade, Second Class(to Blitzen)-a shield is on the back
• Best Concealer(to Carol)-an eagle is on the back
• Best Spy(to Vixen)-A reddish-golden fish is on the back

You walk over to a table in the back. It has a book of battle logs on it with some tattered pages. You read the pages it is spread out to: One of the pages is a fort, not unlike the famous Warwick Castle. It is set upon a hill of ice and stone, with snow flurrying around them. The other page has a description of the battle. There is a circled passage, which you read:

"The battle started today, at the time that was predicted. Our spy, did the job well. …Except we did not realize how many elves would attack us. There were thousands charging at our fort. It seemed quite hopeless, but we fought bravely and they soon retreated after twenty minutes. You would have to admit, Blitzen was the most valuable soldier on the field. We all knew magic, yes, but he had used a spell supposedly of his own creation. At least, we had no idea what it was-perhaps a forgotten Elvish charm. He kept pulling silvery stuff from his brain, and with a snap, it flew over to our enemies. Soon, they all retreated, though Blitzen chased after them to make sure they stayed away. He came back hours later, saying they would not attack until tomorrow afternoon. He was an excellent spy as well as a soldier.”

You see there is a ripped piece of paper used as a bookmark to keep the page. You take it out and examine it closely:

“First draft of ‘Rudolph’(by Carol and Coco):

You know Dasher and Dancer and Prancer and Vixen,

Comet and Cupid and Donner and Blitzen,

But do you recall, the most Violent of all,

Rudolph, the blood-nosed reindeer,

Was very violent when (he) rose.

He always mutilated

All of those who had opposed.

All o-”(cut off)

Disgusted by the lyrics, and glad they were cut off, you turn to the other side:

“Operation Chluntei: 108-122-98(Hx)”
is scrawled in scarlet ink.

You move onto a table with a candle glowing in a silver candlestick, embossed with a reindeer. Engraved in it are

Sov mutnat olutsop sunu

On the table itself, there is a telegraph as well as several messages. The problem is, you can’t read many of them, as only one message is decoded, and only one other is not ciphered.

The clear one: “We found these transcripts in the opposing intelligence headquarters. However, only one has been decoded so far.”

The deciphered message: “THE KEY IS THE THIRD PRIME COUNTRY OF LAST.” (116 72 101 32 75 101 89 32 105 83 32 116 72 101 32 116 72 105 82 68 32 80 82 105 77 101 32 67 79 85 110 116 82 89 32 79 70 32 76 65 83 116)

You peer at the other messages. They read:

“Qrpqsia… Qdr irxq sp n psgkfr orvropnf”

“Gl gsv Xlnnzmwvi lu Yollw: Gszmp blf uli gsv gvhg nvhhztv. R zhhfnv gszg dzh dszg blf hszoo fhv gl wvxlwv. Zg zmb izgv, dv pmld gszg Ercvm pmldh... zmw gszg trevm xlmwrgrlmh, sv dlfow rnnvwrzgvob ivklig rg gl gsv lgsvi hrwv. Gl hvmw yzxp, wl gsv hznv gsrmt zh gsrh grnv.”

“Gl Dlou Uvmxvi 3: R xzm'g hzb nfxs sviv, gsviv nzb yv hkrvh. Yfg dzrg uli zmlgsvi nvhhztv; R'oo vckORZm vevIbgsrmt.”

“TOFC3 ETTXK WOCNI IOTOE OUESN HEREE WFHTE SSOSL OUIAD SNTMN MEAYN RAYTA SEEYO IOLEE IEHVE NTMHD LNRHT RFRCI SEFEN DAOEO DPEFH LMPTN EOIHE TEENE HINOO KUSSS TNWFN RFLAI NOOUA WLFME HSODI OTROW EAYRR BIODI ACEWH IAONE AIKPE OEWTU MERHA NHG.”

“VYLOR ENEHO AEFOE WLUEL ADEMN RBORE YAWLM TCMDO LD.”

You sit and think for a while. You get up and examine the flags for a bit. All you see are different numbers and letters on each flag:

The one at the back:

1AZ2X13: 2-12-9-20-26-5-14 22-9-24-5-14

The one over the doors:

A1RO13TZ26: 17-2-1-1-18-5 16-14-5-2-25

You pace the room, thinking. And then it hits you. Which door should you go through?

Some partial results.

The deciphered message:

If the numbers after the message are seen as ASCII characters we get "tHe KeY iS tHe tHiRD PRiMe COUntRY OF LASt". I don't immediately see any new clue in whether capitals are used or not.

The first undeciphered message:

Some fiddling with letter substitutions changes "Qrpqsia… Qdr irxq sp n psgkfr orvropnf" into "Testing... The next is a simple reversal".

The second undeciphered message:

Using A = Z, B = Y, etc, this message becomes

To the Commander of Blood: Thank you for the test message. I assume that was what you shall use to decode. At any rate, we know that Vixen knows...and that given conditions, he would immediately report it to the other side. To send back, do the same thing as this time.

To Wolf Fencer 3: I can't say much here, there may be spies. But wait for another message; I'll expLIAn eveRything.

The messages on the flag at the back:

A = 1 etc, gives "BLITZEN VIXEN"

The message on the flag over the doors;

A = 1 and Rot13 gives "DONNER CAROL"

A possible clue from Rudolph's diary:

The capital letters give: "IDOTNINIETIIR". If one ignores the I's and the T's, we get "DONNER".

I suspect the big clue is the last undeciphered message, though I haven't cracked it yet:

It is wriiten in words of $$5$$ letters (except the last words) and $$5$$ is the third prime number. Probably a connection there.

Some slight progress

The engraving on the candlestick:

If the engraving is reversed we get "unus postulo tantum vos", which according to Google Translate is Latin for "You only need one".

The last undeciphered message:

I did a letter frequency analysis of the message and the frequency fits well with normal English. This suggests that the letters themselves are not ciphered, just their order is rearranged.

Is anyone else working on this?

• Hmm. Can't seem to hide the second undeciphered message. Help appreciated :)
– Jens
Sep 9 '19 at 21:23
• Fixed. Nice answer! Sep 9 '19 at 22:10