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Puzzle #105 February 2010  "WiII"

Instructions: Guess the words defined by the cryptic clues (answers vary in length from four to eleven letters, and six are capitalized) 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. Eleven across words and ten down words won't fit in the grid unless one of their letters is omitted. Those twenty-one letters, taken in order as they occur in across and down words, spell a seven-word message related to the mystery entry. Thanks to Kevin Wald for test-solving and editing this puzzle. (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?]

Across

  1. End up with perhaps a fragment
  2. Left with a large opening
  3. Her colt is trained to snort
  4. Rules out banishing Earl for slander
  5. Confused a bill and a beak at first, for example
  6. Small stand is steady
  7. Guide doesn't have time for visionary
  8. Jot a witticism in return
  9. Bird and rodent turned to follow vehicle down
  10. Run, walk, or wander
  11. Mystery entry
  12. Defies bishop and carries on wildly
  13. Shell consumed with a will
  14. Latin turned around in conversation
  15. A sudden flood expelled with energy
  16. Banqueter's quicker about beginning to eat
  17. I'm not working for a Greek philosopher
  18. Straighten twisted nub tip
  19. Movie director is back in sharp action
  20. Start to search for male in gay crowd
  21. Build a cell to hold fish
  22. Crane starts concealing where eggs are laid

Down

  1. Average insect with no tail is unsafe
  2. Arbiter faulted Saul for nonacceptance
  3. Teach self-awareness about covering the body
  4. One never corrected an officer of the stable
  5. Mien of Felix, say, swallowing head of sardine
  6. Leave Science to include a class of vertebrates
  7. Getting a bit of rest in life leads to vivacity
  8. Cook keeps hen's heart in a glass container
  9. Author of mysteries is yet to come up
  10. Announcer confused Eric with Rod
  11. Makes sense to take in a European Capital of Culture
  12. To the Italian sailor's shrine
  13. A mean sneak father holds up bad men
  14. Charlie the Mexican and the Québécois Romeo create a place to store wine
  15. Emily loses love for English creep
  16. Boletus edulis is found in France, perhaps
  17. Small-time greetings or verses
  18. Quietly jumble a number
  19. Opening of bypass to Madrid
  20. More compliant about Pete's beginning to interfere
  21. Meat from clambake
  22. Roar to upset speaker
  23. Subtle jesting about beginning of bristly beard
  24. Shelter harbors one occupant