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Puzzlaholics IV went down well, so I'm keeping the same format. The answers are words that can be split into two words (both of which mean something quite different and all of which is hinted at, somewhere in the clue). Here's an example:


I wandered lonely as a cloud,

That floats on high o'er vales and hills,

When all at once I saw a sheep with his head cut off,

Gushing blood everywhere.


I'll also add spoilers to this post when people get the answers (unsolved are in purple). Please use spoilers for your answers!

1) The crab race was nearly over. As they rounded the final bend, the second place crab was tiring, losing ground on the leader. Then he realized his mistake, he was trying to run forwards! He changed to running sideways, and felt a boost of speed and energy. But would there be time to regain the lead?


2) She used to own a collection of flat metal rings, until she gave it to someone else.


3) Bill the badger was extending the underground tunnels of his home, when he uncovered a fossil of great scientific importance. It appeared to be a small donkey, but with a forelimb adapted for flight. Could this be the ancestor of Pegasus?


4) Little demons of the world, let us stand together! By working as one, we can be a law unto ourselves, causing our mischief without fear of retribution!


5) Coffee is in short supply, so we are only allowed one cup per day. I put a bit of brandy in mine to dull the pain from the jagged wounds left by that vicious tiger.


6) I read the book until I reached the part where diplomacy between the factions degenerated into a state of open hostility. Then I lost interest and just sat there bending the paper, watching the distortion of the words as I curved it.


7) Our dining room has an unusual layout. It is most interesting and everybody comments on it. As you see, the chairs are set out as normal, but the central feature of the room is missing.


8) They say Cap'n Purplebeard was the most feared pirate of all, famous throughout the seven seas, and the subject of many tall tales. He was said to have a wooden stump below the knee where he lost a foot.


9) There is insufficient light to see it clearly, but there appear to be small depressions in the top layer of that laminated board.


10) Wing Commander Fitz-Titely was in full flow, whisky in hand, blathering on in his usual pompous, self-important manner:

"...and then fighter planes came out of nowhere and we had to make a swift exit, so we dropped our payload on an empty bog. All we blew up that day was a bunch of wild flowers. Michealmas Daisies, if I'm not mistaken, though from 20,000 feet it's hard to be sure..."


11) Collectively, we dress the medium of space.


12) The manager felt that his staff were capable of acheiving normal standards, as he had motivated them by means of an allegorical story.


13) She was unmarried, and likely to remain so, as she was confined to the house. She whiled away the days, amusing herself with trivia while her wasted youth passed her by.


14) He sells bottles of "life force", claiming it cures all ills (they are empty really, he's a swindler).


15) There are other possible courses of action, although they would cause permanent changes to the indigenous people.


16) Preparations for the show were going badly. One of the actors had chosen a bad time to complain to the producer about the hourly wages being insufficient. The producer responded by ripping off the man's testicles.


17) This creature's body hair grows to a remarkable length, at just over 200 metres.


18) We want these larvae to be well-fed before entering the pupal stage, so we provide leaves for them to eat, conveniently placed on top of these upright posts.


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Ah, but you've just done the hardest one I think.

You think?

I got war/warp pretty quickly, but was stuck trying to fit it to "warping" or "warpath." #5 had me on a fool's quest for a while too. But #1... I don't have the faintest clue -- Crab race... O_o?

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Sterling work Prof, I'm sure the other 3 won't stand up to your scrutiny for long. But I'm going to bed. Good night! -_-

I just noticed you were from Italy. My wife and I spent a couple of weeks there, up in the north, the year before our kids were born (about three years ago now).

Edited by Prof. Templeton
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