I HOPE YOU ARE HAVING LOTS OF FUN IN TRYING TO CATCH ME - THAT WASN’T ME ON THE TV SHOW - WHICH BRINGS UP A POINT ABOUT ME - I AM NOT AFRAID OF THE GAS CHAMBER BECAUSE IT WILL SEND ME TO PARADICE ALL THE SOONER BECAUSE I NOW HAVE ENOUGH SLAVES TO WORK FOR ME WHERE EVERYONE ELSE HAS NOTHING WHEN THEY REACH PARADICE - SO THEY ARE AFRAID OF DEATH - I AM NOT AFRAID BECAUSE I KNOW THAT MY NEW LIFE IS LIFE WILL BE AN EASY ONE IN PARADICE DEATH.
The San Francisco Chronicle article on October 24th 1969 headlined with That Wasn't Zodiac, Say 3 Who Know, to which the Zodiac Killer would reply in his message in the 340 cipher by confirming "That wasn't me on the TV show". Then, on October 25th 1969, the San Francisco Chronicle ran another article entitled Cops No Closer on Zodiac Identity, containing the text "Zodiac struck last on October 11 when he gunned down cab-driver Paul Stine on Washington Street in Presidio Heights. He revealed himself the killer in a letter sent to the Chronicle three days later. Since then he has remained silent". The question would be, how was the Zodiac Killer going to respond to the silence attributed to him by Paul Avery? Probably by choosing a greeting card with a Dripping Pen and accompanied by the words "Sorry I haven't written, but I just washed my pen". The increased complexity of the coding used, along with everything the Zodiac Killer wrote in the decrypted 340 cipher, was likely inspired by these four consecutive newspaper articles in October. If the 340 cipher was specifically crafted subsequent to his purchase of the Dripping Pen card, then this more complicated offering was dreamt up between October 25th 1969 and November 8th 1969.
One new path to pursue, may lie in the three immediate communications following the 340 cipher. Those three being, the November 21st 1969 letter mailed to the San Jose Police Department and the two Fairfield letters mailed on December 7th 1969 and December 16th 1969. All three contained rudimentary coding that may, or may not be clues pertaining to the 340 cipher. The December 7th 1969 code was particularly interesting because it contained 38 characters, many of which ran in sequences mimicking the 340 cipher.
Here is just a simple observation regarding the two December codes in respect to the 340 cipher solution and the reference to "death" on two occasions. If we take a look at the small fragment of code on the December 16th 1969 letter, you will notice that its design somewhat mimics the configuration on the Halloween card. We have five characters, followed by four small crosshairs in each quadrant of the large crosshairs. This had similarity to "paradice" and "slaves" fashioned in cruciform on the Halloween card, accompanied by the four methods of "death" in each quadrant. The Tim Holt comic book, believed to be the inspiration behind the Halloween card, actually carried the full message of "death by knife", "death by rope", "death by gun" and "death by fire". Therefore, the five characters of coding on the December 16th 1969 letter (precedent to the crosshairs) could be the word "death".