The Troublemaking Spy
In Minnesota, United States
How Geocaching Works
~ The Troublemaking Spy ~
10-year-old Andrew watched out the window as black clouds rolled across the cold, gloomy sky. He gave a small wave to his friend, Caroline, as she approached his front door. They'd been friends and classmates for as long as he could remember, but today he wasn’t looking forward to seeing her. He opened the door and they sat down together on the front steps.
“What do you mean he’s dead?” Caroline asked, not prepared for the news.
“I mean, one minute we were playing checkers, and the next minute Doc was on the floor,” said Andrew.
The news stunned Caroline. “What did you do?”
“I called my mom at work. She told me to dial 911 and then see if Officer Cash was home.”
“Officer Cash?” she asked.
“He’s the police officer that lives next door. His real name is George, but the adults all call him 'Geo'. When I told him what happened, he told me to stay outside, and then ran in to help Doc. A few minutes later, an ambulance came. When I asked if Doc was all right, Officer Cash put his hand on my shoulder and told me Doc was ‘gone’.”
Caroline could tell her friend was holding back tears. “Are you ok?”
“Yeah. I really miss him, though,”
“I do too.” Caroline let out a small sigh as she remembered how much she enjoyed spending time with Doc. “Did he say anything before he died?”
“Not really,” he replied. “Oh, wait! He did give me this.” He pulled out a sealed envelope and showed it to Caroline. “He told me not to open it until I saw you.” She looked curious, so he turned it over and tore into it. He pulled out a yellow piece of paper, carefully unfolded it, and they read it together.
“What does “Troublemaking Spy” and “Uncopyrightables” mean?" Caroline wondered aloud, "and what are the numbers about?”
“I have no idea…but I think I know someone who could help. Come with me,” Andrew stood and began to walk towards the neighboring house. “Officer Cash said I could stop by anytime I wanted to talk.” He paused. “You know, about Doc,” he added quietly.
When they knocked on the door, Officer Cash opened it and welcomed them in. The man quickly deduced why they were there, and decided to skip the small talk. “So, Dr. Addison was a friend?”
“Yes. Doc has been our Big-Brother/Big-Sister sponsor since we were little kids,” Andrew told him. “He was the best!”
Caroline nodded. “He used to let us climb trees and work in his garden and stuff.”
Officer Cash smiled at their enthusiasm. “What else can you tell me about him?”
“He absolutely loved puzzles." Andrew went on, "he was a crypt…crypt-o-mall-o-gist or something.”
“A cryptologist?” Officer Cash offered.
“Yeah! That’s it, a cryptologist! He was a puzzle doctor,” he said proudly. “He used to make up fun games and puzzles and scavenger hunts and other fun stuff."
“That's right!" Caroline chimed in, with a smile. "He told us our visits were the best part of his whole week. He was like a father to us, and we always had a lot of fun." She paused, and her brow furrowed. "Until last week’s meeting,” she finished with a sad tone.
Officer Cash frowned. “Last week?" What happened last week?”
“He was late,” she said hesitantly. “He had never been late before.”
“It was weird," Andrew nodded, "He was as white as a ghost! When we asked if he was alright, he just said, ‘Are you two up for a treasure hunt?’”
“He told us he was working on his greatest treasure hunt ever, but it wasn’t quite ready. Then he said he needed to leave early,” Caroline finished. With a sideways glance at Andrew, she added, “he’d never done that before either.”
Officer Cash picked up on their subtle exchange. “Is there something else you want to tell me?” Andrew pulled the note from his pocket. He was trying to decide what to say about it when Officer Cash asked, “Can I take a look?”
“Sure. He said this would lead us to his greatest treasure.”
Officer Cash took the note from the boy, looked it over, and smiled as he said, “he's right.”
“Is it a secret code?” Caroline asked.
“In a way." He pointed at the letter, "these are coordinates.”
“Like to an address?” Andrew asked.
“Like to a location,” he clarified.
Caroline let out a small, excited gasp. “Do you think they lead to the treasure?” she asked in a low whisper.
“From what you’ve told me of Doctor Addison, I think it might be a little more complicated than that. Let’s check out these coordinates,” responded Officer Cash as he walked over to the computer. He typed the information into a website, nodded, and said, “Just as I suspected.”
“What is it? Does the map show you where he hid the treasure?” Caroline asked.
“The coordinates are pointing to the woods down the street.”
“The woods? Why would he hide it in the woods?” Andrew asked.
“Hmmm," Officer Cash began, not wanting to give anything more away, "why don’t you two run home and ask your parents if you can go for a walk. I think it’s time we go on a little treasure hunt…”
~ Geocaching Recommendations & Additional Details ~
Number of Stages: 7
Total Hike: ~1.25 miles
Duration: ~90 minutes
Bushwacking: All stages located within 50 feet of existing deer trails
~ The Troublemaking Spy ~
MnGCA - 2012 Cache of the Year
~ The Troublemaking Spy ~
MnGCA - Cache of the Month - April 2012
Ernq gur jubyr fgbel sbe gur shyy rssrpg.
Uvag sbe Fgntrf 4 & 6: Bcra vg hc naq ybbx vafvqr.
Chmmyrf: Cyrnfr zvk hc cvrprf hcba pbzcyrgvba!!!
Last Updated: on 5/21/2013 10:58:51 AM Pacific Daylight Time (5:58 PM GMT)
Coordinates are in the WGS84 datum