# Thread: The Omega Key, the Dove Key, and the Scratched-Out Key

1. Expert Twelever TwelevePlus
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Greetings on a balmy, humid afternoon in the Bayou State of Louisiana!

I don't know if I've done a good job explaining the magnitude of these three keys, but they appear to be the answer to the whole shebang.

Look at the map.

If you grasp the concept of these three keys, you'll understand what you're looking at.

It's the great-grandaddy of the three keys puzzles.

An 'X' that is first. A blank in the middle. Something in 'thirds' at the end.

The fleur-de-lis is the thing representing 'thirds'.

The blank in the middle are the 20 boxes that will contain our 20 numbers.

'The first equals the last'--the concept of the three keys reverses the map for us to begin solving this final puzzle.

From Chapter 9 about the concept of the three keys: The three keys have to be used in the correct order to unlock the box. The box didn't contain the treasure, but revealed a letter that shows you where to go next.

Keep on keepin' on,

Doc

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About a year ago my puzzle partner and I solved the 240 q's...came to a dead end. Came across this thread today. We realized that I had a different Ch 2. Mine begins...The bird had always frightened me...

Where were you discussing this?

I ordered another book...it was a duplicate. Cheryl and I checked the beginning,middle and end of the other chapters, They were identical. We didn't check every single word.

Any help to get us back up to speed will be greatly appreciated!

Karen

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Originally Posted by ksteph
Where were you discussing this?
It came up in chat; someone was referencing a passage that not all of us had.

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Good morning on a sunny day on vacation in Dallas, TX at the crack of 10am!

Sleeping late on vacations is SUCH a good idea.

I think I've managed to arrive at the end of this thing, and since we've had such a hard time moving past the 240 questions, I wanted to stop by and share an overall view of what I've seen.

The big problem I had--and I suspect many others have as well--is that we expected a single, final step that showed 1 - 20 in a sequence.

That's not what this puzzle does.

There are three additional steps to arrive at the sequence:

1. Using the concept of the original Invisible Ink clue and its three keys, one must identify the clues inside each chapter associated with these keys. The clues are not the final answer for each key, but must be solved. The three solutions representing the three keys combine to form a final metapuzzle. The answer for each metapuzzle is a three-letter word.

2. The three letter word is used in conjunction with major clues from the web site and the two soduku puzzles at the end of each chapter to generate 20 equations.

3. The answers to the 20 equations form the final layer of the puzzle. The answers are clues to create a sequencing mechanism. This mechanism will arrange the 1 - 20 to place onto the map.

This isn't easy--Mr. Shore isn't just going to give his money away. I cannot begin to imagine the time it took to come up with all these mini-puzzles and clues. He's probably been pulling his hair out because he's crammed so much stuff into this book and web site and nobody has been able to work his puzzle.

The original Invisible Ink clue is the guiding light here, and you need to raise your index of suspicion to identify his clues.

This probably would have worked better if he had included more of the inference-style puzzles in the body of the 240 questions so we would have some idea what to look for before tackling the map stuff.

Let me show you an example you can try to cut your teeth on, but be aware it's not going to help for the silver eagles. This is for the golden eagle layer of the puzzle.

The clues of the Optic Cross were never intended to help you solve individual chapter questions and is useless when looked at in this way.

A CROSS OPTIC, on the other hand, is a different story.

If you're becoming conversant with the idea of the three keys, you should recognize CROSS as being a version of an 'X' clue. What would 'OPTIC' refer to that goes together with 'CROSS' (remember first = last) that also fulfills the necessary criteria of being a representation of 'third'?

The answer is 'Optic = EYES'.

Because EYES = III. Get it?

Thus, the 'optic cross' = CROSS OPTIC = CROSS EYES = X III.

Roman numeral 13.

There's a final step to this puzzle. You need to deduce the third key. What's in the middle of 'cross eyes'? If you work out the correct answer, you'll have an idea what these 13 optic cross clues might be useful for.

Each of the 13 optic cross clues are mini-puzzles and may or may not help you figure out the general sort of clues and puzzles we're up against in the main body of the silver eagle puzzle.

We have a lot of work ahead, but I hope this provides the glimmers of a road map. This puzzle looks like a LOT of fun!

Keep on truckin',

Doc

5. And 'Jeep' is CXXI when you ROT (garbage) it

6. Doc, I fail to see how EYES results in exactly 3 I's . Why not II or IIII, or whatever? I am intrigued by the 20 equations, but your method seems like some big leaps of faith.

...and what is with the Jeep?

7. Expert Twelever TwelevePlus
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stvwz,

The last key has to be related to an iteration of THIRD. Hence, the three III's. Something like Charles Proctor III.

These puzzles are difficult and use a completely different skill set from the ciphers--something Boatdaddy calls 'inference clues' which is a great name for them.

These inference clues and puzzles have to be logical and follow the rules set forth by the original Invisible Ink clue--the only clue the author has given us which directly references solving a map:

1. The first key is related to an iteration of 'X' and has to be associated with an iteration of 'first'.
2. The second key has to be a 'blank-in-the-middle' of a recognized group of three.
3. The third key is related to an iteration of THIRD.
4. The first = last, meaning the first key and the third key are somehow equivalent.

To begin a map solution will require us to find and solve these three keys in a chapter.

I readily admit these appear to be leaps of faith because they don't have a cipher-like background, but they are internally consistent within the framework of the Invisible Ink clue.

I'll try to show you what I'm talking about:

1. In chapter 1, the iteration of 'first' that contains our clue for the first key is the 'first paragraph'. Within this paragraph are letters from the hidden poem SURE THERE ARE.

This is an anagram puzzle. SURE THERE ARE = TREASURE HERE.

It's a riddle.

'X' marks the spot.

Hence, the first key--the omega key--for chapter 1 is simply the letter 'X'.

This clue fulfills the 'rules' set forth by the Invisible Ink clue: we have an iteration of 'first' and it's related to an 'X'. For this particular chapter, it's the letter 'X' itself.

2. The last key has to be related to an iteration of THIRD. For Chapter 1, the flag for discovering the key is one of the odd names for DB Cooper: Charles Proctor III.

This is an example of intuitive reasoning, and I readily admit that can be dangerous. Something about those two names--George Bravo and Charles Proctor III--just seems to 'stand out'. I really can't quantify why they seem to stand out, but they do.

For the last key's puzzle, we have an iteration of THIRD in the name Charles Proctor III.

To solve this puzzle, we need to use the rule set forth in the invisible ink clue: First = last.

After solving the first key's puzzle, we know the first key = X. We have our clue for the third key in the name Charles Proctor III. According to the Invisible Ink clue, these two things are equivalent.

Asking the question another way: Do you know what a 'proctor' is? It's a teacher or mentor.

Do you know a famous proctor named Charles that would somehow be equivalent to an 'X'?

The answer is the third key for Chapter 1.

I hope to heavens this makes some modicum of sense. I fully realize these are WAY different from solving a cipher, and we have no web site to plug in our answers and tell us if we're right or wrong, but all of this put together winds up creating a brilliant puzzle.

Keep the faith,

Doc

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As is CXXI = 121 = "1 to 1"?

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esmith, I think that's Shrek's way of commenting this whole business is 'garbage' to him. No worries--he might be right.

I just don't think so at this particular time--if I change my mind, I'm not bashful about saying I was wrong about something and trying to correct the course.

Try stretching your brain muscles a bit on these inference clues:

1. We have a message from 'Joy' embedded in one of the chapter questions that says she'll show up from 'TIME-TO-TIME' and give us hints and clues.
2. Now, you have a second Invisible Ink clue that's from Joy as well that shows up......well, at different TIMES.

Why is she prodding us towards looking at TIMES?

Are you aware that the Archives wheel is 'wrong'? The wheel is divided into 12 sections as a clock, but the month of January is set at the 12:00 position.

January = 12:00. First = last. Why are these 'times' wrong?

A description of the cipher page with the sun with the rings of letters around the sun might be described as a SUN DIAL.

This business about TIMES won't show up until the Golden Eagle level of the puzzle, but I wanted to show you how these clues might be related to each other to give you some ideas.

Doc

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Thanks Doc! I'm in Chat if any of you feel like brainstorming.