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Guest Puzzle January 2018  "Mirage" by Arthur Schless

Instructions: Guess the words defined by the cryptic clues (answers vary in length from three to twelve letters, eleven are capitalized, and one is a prefix) then enter them in the grid one after another in the same order as their clues, starting in the upper left corner. Across words that don't end at the right continue on the next row, and down words that don't end at the bottom continue in the next column. Five across words and five down words won't fit in the grid unless one of their letters is removed. Those ten letters, taken in order as they occur in across and down words, spell a two-word phrase related to the title and the mystery entries. Thanks to John for making this all Real. If you are having trouble printing these puzzles, you can download an Adobe Acrobat version of the puzzle and grid. [Want to see some hints?]


  1. Mystery word
  2. Mini-actor playing undertaker
  3. Fearless foray after faun's flourish
  4. One penny gets one antique
  5. Bancroft meets Sharpton in temper
  6. Opinionated Abe and Sid get involved
  7. Design of phlogopite
  8. Head page replacing queen in list
  9. Feared Red dead in melee
  10. Spare former spouse returning paintings, e.g.
  11. Sexpot's show
  12. Timeless blather ruined plant book
  13. Strange story about English delicacy
  14. Feel sad about frozen queen
  15. Stagger horse without resistance
  16. Pipe is part of last broken piece of wood in back of chair
  17. Similar to thumbs up on Facebook
  18. Ida leaves Crusoe's man for cook
  19. Daredevil motorcyclist in development
  20. Trouble about body odor in an excited state
  21. Made of wood added to a kennel
  22. First one in dock
  23. Mystery word


  1. Making easy cure of Italian tic
  2. Manila's wild creature
  3. Sexy young gal takes Rod for child novice
  4. Oddly steady keeping up the day of Týr
  5. Hotel employee staying far away at the front
  6. Hathaway seen in channel
  7. Wrestler's repose
  8. Plan for Lauer trimmed
  9. Discourage holding ten on the right
  10. Unconcerned about right or wrong in morning exam
  11. Imitation of a flailing prey
  12. Sacred book of 2 or 1
  13. Out door smell
  14. Pro state surfacer
  15. Color of town playwright
  16. The lens catches Spartan beauty
  17. Odd griddle for Andre
  18. Kurt, in Congo, delivers
  19. Mountain current gets a ruminant
  20. Turning to ward off infected one
  21. Stigma of Russian leader left out
  22. Mail receiver's bino trashed ten
  23. Boa lab upset explorer