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The Sentry

The Sentry

Solution: HANNIBAL LECTER

This is basically just a simple exercise in websearching; after getting a few answers, solvers should begin to guess that the traditional wedding anniversary gifts are the theme here. (The phrases “a gift for trivia” and “hall mark” (as in Hallmark, the famous gift company) in the flavortext also point towards this.) The answers are:

1. “Paper Moon” (1st)
2. Ivory Coast (14th)
3. Red China (20th)
4. Bronze Age (8th)
5. Orion’s Crystal (15th)
6. “Ebony and Ivory” (14th)
7. quicksilver (25th)
8. bronze (8th)
9. “Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards” (15th)
10. “Flowers for Algernon” (4th; square to get 16th)
11. Steely Dan (11th)
12. Pottery Barn (9th)
13. Ivory Soap (14th)
14. “China Grove” (20th; subtract one to get 19th)
15. silkworm (12th)
16. Leatherface (3rd; multiply by seven to get 21st)
17. ivory dealer (14th)
18. Little Jackie Paper (1st)
19. “China Beach” (20th)
20. pottery wheel (9th)
21. leather glove (3rd)

The corresponding letters of the alphabet spell out “ANTHONY HOPKINS LUNATIC,” which makes HANNIBAL LECTER the seventh Mage.

Author’s Notes:

This was the next-to-last regular puzzle designed for the Hunt. At this point, I was reaching for ideas; when the idea for this one hit me, it took me less than a half-hour to write it up. The reason for the Sentry’s instructions was that after the fifteenth anniversary, the traditional gifts start going up by fives instead of ones.

After Solving the Sentry:

“Hannibal Lecter? Of all the…”
BWOMP!
“I wouldn’t say what you were about to say if I were you.”
“Eep! Er, so, um, do you, uh, want to help me out, Mr. Mage, sir?”
“By all means. Incidentally, do you have any fava beans or Chianti?”
“Um, no.”
“Ah, well. Too much to hope for, I suppose.”

Note: When it was originally published, the Sentry mistaken asked puzzlers to subtract one from question 19 instead of question 14. The puzzle is correct as it is currently written.

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