Many thanks to Hanzík for the Czech translations!

tcc-case-title
extremely geeky  extremely geeky

Case 161

Triangle

A new monk of the Spider Clan had become lost in the Temple at night. After several twists and turns he had the misfortune of passing through a heavy door that locked behind him with an awful clack.

The monk found himself in the middle of a staircase that spiralled up the inside walls of a hollow tower. Timidly he peered over the railing. Far below lay a courtyard shrouded in darkness, while far above hung a black sky identical to the courtyard in every respect. The monk proceeded to ascend the stair, hoping to find either an egress or a more enlightening vantage point.

Every door he passed on his right was locked. The weary monk had almost resolved to go back down when he spied a shaft of light escaping from the cracks of a door ahead.

- - -

The door was labelled “123”. The monk hesitated, then knocked. There was a sound of footsteps, then the door swung open to reveal an old woman holding a lantern aloft.

“Yes? Yes? Yes?” said the nun impatiently.

“A dozen pardons for disturbing you at this late hour,” said the monk, feeling suddenly lightheaded from the long climb. “But... where am I?”

“The Abbey of Hidden Absurdities,” said the nun, “in the tower where PHP is written.”

“What is so absurd about PHP?” asked the monk.

The old nun laughed. “I take it you haven’t done much work in that language. Ask my older sister upstairs that question; she’s sure to help you.” The nun then slammed her door, locking it with a dreadful clack.

The monk sighed and continued up the stairs, around and around, eventually coming to another door with a light behind it.

- - -

This door was labelled “456A”. The monk knocked, and was answered by another old woman.

“A dozen pardons for troubling you at this late hour,” said the monk, “but what is so absurd about PHP?”

The old nun chortled. “I take it you haven’t done much string processing in that language. Ask my older sister upstairs that question; she’s sure to help you.” The nun then slammed her door, locking it with a terrible clack.

The monk grumbled and continued up the stairs, around and around, eventually coming to another door with a light behind it.

- - -

This door was labelled “78”. The monk knocked, and was answered by another old woman.

“A dozen pardons for intruding at this late hour,” said the monk, “but what is so absurd about PHP?”

The old nun cackled. “I take it you haven’t done much with the numerical comparison operators in that language. Ask my older sister upstairs that question; she’s sure to help you.” The nun then slammed her door, locking it with a horrible clack.

The monk groaned and continued up the stairs, around and around, eventually coming to another door with a light behind it.

- - -

This door was labelled “123”.

The monk hesitated, then knocked. There was a sound of footsteps, then the door swung open to reveal an old woman holding a lantern aloft.

“Yes? Yes? Yes?” said the nun impatiently.

“A dozen pardons for disturbing you at this late hour,” said the monk, feeling suddenly lightheaded. “But... where am I?”