March 2013, Challenge Entry: The Jester's Tomb
I haven't entered a challenge for a couple months, even though I wanted to. However this challenge sounds to good to pass up. So I am going to see if I can find time to finish this one.
I haven't started the map yet, but here is the backstory and some of the clues.
The Jester's Tomb
Dunham had been the king's jester for so many years that they became friends. The king eventually realized that to be truly funny required a brilliant mind and he started to consider Dunham to be his best advisor. Over many years the Jester became the Advisor, and when the king became ill, Dunham became his Steward. When the king died, the Jester ruled the kingdom as Steward for several years until the king's grandson reached maturity and could take his place as rightful ruler. Several years later, Dunham died in his sleep and was laid to rest in a crypt he had designed himself. He knew that his tomb would be desecrated as he was quite rich. Always the jester at heart, he built many tricks and puzzles to protect his final resting place, and his treasure.
1: Entry Hall. As you pass through a hallway into the tomb, you can see that the walls are covered in brilliant paintings. All are depictions of The Jester Steward in momentous events.
Dunham as a teenager putting on a jester's costume. Under the painting is etched: To find the safe path beneath your feet, Near icy landmark start to seek, Meander thence from cold to hot, Travelling always on the diagonal.
Dunham, slightly older, performing for a large crowd in a village square. The pictures shows him holding up a silver coin in his left hand as if he is going to make it disappear. In the background are two mountains painted gold.
The Jester performing for the king in the royal court. A tapestry on the wall behind the jester in the painting clearly says "Nine lives he has, not three".
Dunham performing for a group of nobles. This painting has 3 panels. In the first panel he is juggling 5 identical bottles, in the second he juggles 3 of the bottles, and in the final panel he holds but one bottle and is pouring the water from it onto the padlock of a locked door. On the top is carved "All for one, and One for all we can get away with."
A painting of the jester walking a tightrope over a pit of fire while juggling 3 daggers. The crowd is painted with such detail that individual faces can be identified. Everyone is clapping except one woman. The painting is labeled, "My greatest performance". Etched into the bottom of the frame is: "Ignore the door, jump into the pit"
A tapestry showing Dunham wearing his jester's costume but standing behind the king while he sits on his throne. In front of them is a group of foreign diplomats bowing. Woven into the tapestry are the words "The King is a little to vain."
Another tapestry shows the King and Dunham riding horses on a stag hunt. The King's horse is large and magnificent, the jester's horse is nice but smaller. There is a brilliant rainbow arched over the group. The rainbow touches down on a large oak tree in the distance. A small sign under the tapestry reads: "For this challenge there is naught to do, but take each step and follow through. The path you take brooks no retreat, Until the open portal do you meet."
This painting shows Dunham surrounded by his family in a classic pose. Careful examination reveals the letters, G K N T and Z mixed into objects in the painting.
There's a painting of Dunham once again standing behind the King on his throne, but now Dunham is in regal court attire and he is whispering in the King's ear. Carved into all 4 sides of the frame are the words: " Go up, Go right, go down, go left, more easily said than done, the real problem is can you all finish as one?
A large tapestry depicting the King's funeral followed by Dunham's coronation as Steward of the Kingdom. In his left hand he holds a ceremonial staff, in the other an unusual key. Beside him stands a teenage youth who looks a lot like the dead King. Carved into the frame is: "The First is Five, The Last is Three, but only a Pure One opens Me."
In this painting Dunham is seated at the head of a banquet table wearing the Crown of the Steward. On a banner behind him are the words, "The more there is of it, the less you see"
The last painting shows Denham placing the true crown on the head of a young man. Careful examination will show that this is the teen from a prior picture probably 4 or 5 years later. On a banner in the painting it says: "If you have to choose between good and evil always try to choose good, but if you have to choose between what is right and what is funny, I usually choose funny"