Writing a secret note … or how to feel really stupid for a half hour

Edward Larsson's runic cipher
Edward Larsson's runic cipher

I’ll let you in on a little secret: if I were in charge of cracking codes in the second world war, everyone on the Canadian side of the war would be dead.

I have the ‘code’ such as it is, I have the hidden message… why is it so hard to put that together?

This is what the hidden message needs to say:
Please send help. Being black mailed. Don’t know by whom. Don’t tell parents.
And if the ‘code’ is every fifth word, here’s what the message hidden in the rest of the note looks like:
Word word word word PLEASE word word word word SEND word word word word HELP word word word word BEING Word word word word BLACK word word word word MAILED word word word word DON’T word word word word KNOW word word word word BY word word word word WHOM word word word word DON’T word word word word TELL word word word word PARENTS.
A half hour later (30 minutes filled with cuss words in at least two languages):
Dear Elaine:
If it please you, remember to send some wedding photos to help me imagine attending and being with you. Did Rosie Black attend? She had earlier mailed that she intended to; don’t think you told me? Know that I miss you by the way, for whom else would I write?! Don’t stay away long, Elaine, tell Mr.Ridley that my parents request your presence here!
Love, Frannie
Oh, and then I realized that the second ‘secret word’ only had three letters between please and send. Aaargh!

Author: Angela Misri

Novelist, Digital Strategist & Journalist http://angelamisri.com

4 thoughts on “Writing a secret note … or how to feel really stupid for a half hour”

  1. i sympathize, code-making is not very easy to do. otherwise what would be the point of codes? and what languages were they? i know one in french and another in japanese, and several in english, but that’s it.

  2. The languages I was swearing in? Lol; French and English. I know some rather harsh words in Kashmiri, but no swears sadly. My education is lacking, I know. And you are of course totally right, that IS the point of codes, except mine was mad easy (every 5th word) which just makes it sad that after a half hour, I still missed a word. But thanks for the comment!

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