# 2015 AMC 10A Problems/Problem 10

## Problem

How many rearrangements of $abcd$ are there in which no two adjacent letters are also adjacent letters in the alphabet? For example, no such rearrangements could include either $ab$ or $ba$. $\textbf{(A)}\ 0\qquad\textbf{(B)}\ 1\qquad\textbf{(C)}\ 2\qquad\textbf{(D)}\ 3\qquad\textbf{(E)}\ 4$

## Solution

The first thing one would want to do is see a possible value that works and then stem off of it. For example, if we start with an $a$, we can only place a $c$ or $d$ next to it. Unfortunately, after that step, we can't do too much, since: $acbd$ is not allowed because of the $cb$, and $acdb$ is not allowed because of the $cd$.

We get the same problem if we start with a $d$, since a $b$ will have to end up in the middle, causing it to be adjacent to an $a$ or $c$.

If we start with a $b$, the next letter would have to be a $d$, and since we can put an $a$ next to it and then a $c$ after that, this configuration works. The same approach applies if we start with a $c$.

So the solution must be the two solutions that were allowed, one starting from a $b$ and the other with a $c$, giving us: $$1 + 1 = \boxed{\textbf{(C)}\ 2}.$$

## Video Solution

~savannahsolver

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