Sometimes my two worlds collide and puzzly stuff ends up in the P.A.W.S. series. I’m editing Londinium, (P.A.W.S. 4) at the moment and came across this section that I believe some of my puzzle friends may enjoy!
Danny got up and stirred the pea soup. It was odd, but it really did help him think, like the cauldron of green goo was in fact an immense scrying bowl. He thought about the name the werecat had mentioned, Precipitous Brew. Such a strange name, yet Danny felt he had heard it somewhere before, maybe in a spell book back at P.A.W.S.? No, not a spell book, a puzzle. Precipitous Brew had been a clue in a cryptic crossword.
Last winter, always wanting to try new things Joey, the animagus kangaroo, had discovered puzzles and in particular a devious sort called cryptic crosswords. He had shared his new interest with Danny, and Danny too had become fascinated by them. As a child he had often been left in the care of Beatrice Bumsqueak, who was a big fan of American-style crosswords found in the daily newspapers. Danny, a precocious child, had often helped Beatrice solve her daily puzzle and had become quite adept at them.
Cryptic crosswords were something new to him and he enjoyed the challenge. Each clue was a puzzle in itself to be analyzed. And he was almost certain now that that’s where he had heard the name Precipitous Brew before. Problem was he couldn’t remember the answer. As it was a short clue it sounded like it would be a double definition, and shouldn’t be too difficult, but somehow the answer escaped him. He stirred the pea soup and concentrated. It would help, thought Danny, if I knew the number of letters.
He went over to the kitchen table and sat down. He picked up scrap of paper and a pencil that Gromer had left lying there and wrote the words, Precipitous Brew. It seemed like a double definition, but he supposed it could be an anagram and he set about trying to anagram the word, Precipitous, with no luck.
“Steep,” came a voice behind him, and Danny jumped. He had not noticed Caradog coming in. “That’s the answer. Knew the fellow. He’s an alchemist, works at the P.A.W.S. Institute in London. Probably still there.
Tomorrow is release date for Umbrae (P.A.W.S. 3)
Please join me and a bunch of cool indie authors as we celebrate the release.