Nana is a scary riddle about a 9-year old girl whose whole family is murdered. This story was originally a Japanese riddle that is “scary when you know the meaning”. The riddle doesn’t work in English so I had to change it. I’ll explain the original Japanese riddle at the bottom of the page.
In a certain district in Japan, a horrible crime took place. An entire family was murdered. The mother, the father and the son were all killed. The only one that survived was the daughter who was hiding in a closet at the time of the murders. Her name was Nana and she was only 9 years old.
When police examined the bodies, they found that the father had managed to leave a message on the floor before he died. It was written in his own blood. The police couldn’t make sense of the strange message. It just seemed to be a series of random numbers… “141141”
All of Nana’s family were dead and she had nobody to turn to. The police decided to take care of the young girl until things calmed down. One police officer volunteered to let her stay in his home to live with his wife and kids. They thought she would be safe there.
After a while, an unemployed 34-year-old man who lived in the neighborhood was arrested. The police questioned him, but he said he didn’t know anything about the murders and rarely even left his house. The police didn’t believe his story and became convinced he was the killer.
That evening, the police officer came home from work and took Nana aside. He told her that they had a suspect. When she heard this, Nana was very frightened, but the policeman tried to calm her down and whispered softly to her.
“Don’t worry, Nana-chan,” he said. “This horrible ordeal will be over soon. We are going to catch the bad man who hurt your family, and we are going to make him pay for what he did.”
Then, the policeman looked at Nana’s face. The little girl was smiling and she even began to laugh.
Note: To find the solution to who the killer was: A is the 1st letter of the alphabet and N is the 14th… 14-1-14-1 = N-A-N-A.
Note: In the original Japanese story, the solution is much more complicated. The message the father leaves is “7-564”. In Japanese, 7 is pronounced either “nana” or “shichi”, 5 is pronounced “go” or “ko”, 6 is pronounced “roku” or “ro” and 4 is pronounced “yon” or “shi”. So “7 564” could be pronounced “nana koroshi” which means, in English, “Nana murder”. Talk about complicated!
While I was researching this, I came across another famous one. Sometimes kids in Japan text each other the number “42-42-564” to freak each other out. In Japanese, 42-42-564 is pronounced “shini shini koroshi” which means “Die! Die! Kill!” or “Death! Death! Murder!”