When Marley woke up she was confused. The roof of her bedroom was different. So was the bed, the door; the whole room just wasn’t right. Where was she? She looked out the window at the bright warm sunshine and blue sky – summer, not winter – and then she remembered. She and her brother Caed had travelled from winter in New Zealand all the way to Switzerland on the other side of the world! Their Auntie Keri lived in Mies, a small village in the canton of Vaud, and she’d invited Marley and Caed to visit to help to solve a baffling puzzle.

The children were both excited to hear about it, so Keri explained straight away.

“We’ve been living here for a couple of years now,” she said, “and it’s a lovely place. There’s the mountains and fields close by, and the lake as well, but there is a mysterious puzzle that I need your help to investigate.”

“What kind of mysterious?” asked Marley, intrigued, as she wondered what it could be.


“Mies has a coat of arms which depicts three pine trees standing behind a big rock,” explained Keri. “But nobody knows where it is, or why it is so important that anyone would put it on a coat of arms for the whole village, or even how it got to Mies in the first place. These are the three questions that we need your help to figure out.”

“That sounds like an adventure!” said Caed, and Marley agreed. “First thing tomorrow, we’ll pack a backpack and go and see what we can find!”

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