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There are no word boundaries in the grid. Answers are placed on the row or column indicated by their number in the order given (first a, then b etc.). Successive answers on the same row or column are allowed to share any number of letters, and must share at least one.

Fourteen "across" clues, one on each row, are in the wrong order. This group of clues must be reordered before solving, without changing the placement of other clues. Numbers referencing other clues refer to the clue numbers before reordering. Once placed on their correct rows, each of these clues describes the events of one narrative unit.

All other clues have either one extra letter, or an extra pair of successive letters, in one word. These must be removed before solving; all removals produce real words found in the UKACD. Put together, the extra letters for each row/column number – first the across clues in order and then down – spell out the title of the corresponding narrative unit, possibly repeated multiple times.

1a) Aunt in Peruse entertains Evita's husband, showing city on the border (7)
1b) To an extent, central portion of caper takes place in moving train (2,4)
1c) Romani's entrance near European capital – note paperwork? (7)
1d) Core parent in family produced 14e down's musical compilation (7)
1e) Penny pier fruit (5)
2a) 2f across's counterpart is stuck in web? Rot there! (7)
2b) Wading bird consumed small amount of hitchy substance that is addictive (6)
2c) Mind perverted, man is lost – taken by great power to utter darkness (8)
2d) Brown-coated onetime paramour, one living in southern estate (5)
2e) Research of exotic nails, stay (8)
2f) Grinny to Ron Weasley: "Maybe resist going mad?" (6)
3a) Carb lost during cheer of the Spanish seer (6)
3b) Essentially rescued busy King Edward and declared innocent (7)
3c) Children's game is hup after Edwin wearing Roger's clothes (3,5)
3d) Brave Cuckoo director Burton, exactly as win the original (8)
3e) Unexpected bride's leading to ruin (6)
4a) Drunk Simon enjoyed food and flirted; ultimately became drowsy (9)
4b) Bank's attempt to follow sources sat a great distance (5,5)
4c) Say, Matthew playing pogs with heel's skin (6)
4d) Nile affected by no air pressure and waiter temperature phenomenon (2,4)
4e) Newton operating station at the back with 6a down's parent's man (5)
4f) Noting Asian drugs, cartel's leaders lead to informant (4)
5a) For instance, Farsad and Gray's apartments (5)
5b) A rebel leader taking palace of regime's last member in humble, backward country such as 1600s Russia (7)
5c) Most hostile game feats men (7)
5d) Walk with preside and a bit of smug certainty, almost (5)
5e) Disturbance as spaceship without oxygen must get small piece of automation (6)
5f) Norse goad losing gold is the thing being discussed (4)
5g) I criticise one country's western part that's like the Republic off Iran (7)
6a) Combative gangster's coat sourfaced with 13d across-indigo finish (5)
6b) King, done wrong buy jury's conclusion? (6)
6c) I fly high, rover the air, which is not a pleasing sight (7)
6d) Gathering information about operation where someone is dumped (5)
6e) According to hearsay, criminal children rown up (7)
6f) Malcolm's host in good condition after party? (8)
6g) Yell "Perhaps Jafe swill" out loud (4)
7a) Jones in Rome hosting exhausted dude one day each month... in Rome (4)
7b) Cache remains after script missaying contents (5)
7c) Type of corporation that's a big name in the petronel industry (5)
7d) Lost! Taking in equine catch (5)
7e) Book is badly hurt (4)
7f) Journalists disturbed store outside of Djibouti's wallows (7)
8a) Sioux escaped from Avi, insane nerd man (5)
8b) Newt fashion centre (6)
8c) Tailless coat near ancient city harbouring gent that's Headless Horseman? (7)
8d) Doctor Tam about to employ crew for diversion (9)
8e) Three nuts, each large and fairy (8)
8f) Mountain bears being dominant Megan? (6)
9a) Look at bowels of Archer showing hate (6)
9b) Feature of caries she rated poorly (8)
9c) Say "Goal!", for example (5)
9d) Elite group had launch, say, before midday (1,4)
9e) Wash tortured with knife – setting of legendary breakout (9)
9f) Praying no mind to quietly misbehaving preteen's admission (6)
10a) River followed by man, slightly deranged, wanting to get bounty (6)
10b) No end to Wales outside walls of Norfolk joint (5)
10c) Patriarch 3b down half-heartedly abandoned synagogue ahead? (4)
10d) Striver to eat short sausage and shake (7)
10e) Studio fixing real ties (7)
10f) Antonio ultimately left group tin confused call (4,2)
11a) Wrong cut its leading to stroke? (5)
11b) 10a down rushers, originally with absurdly scant clothing (6)
11c) Spain 4e across with slightly crooked arm (6)
11d) Part of Albany, scrummiest city in eponymous 9c across (3, abbr.)
11e) Predator briefly follows Crazy Ivan making pilot (9)
11f) Hermine possibly skinned to show Serenity? (4)
11g) Sierra ate trout, finding hair (4)
11h) Someone that Maya discriminate a spirit (6)
12a) Stage flipped uniform floor covering (4)
12b) Rake hupped, messieurs! Pick side: heads or tails? (5)
12c) Place mostly surrounded by water – Mal missing clothing after larceny? (6)
12d) Court dismissed decision to identify music meaker (5)
12e) Deliberative assembly amend restricted intake (4)
12f) Seasonal worker might handless aluminium cup, ultimately (4)
12g) Bait of Nepal, a unicameral republic (5)
12h) Gone American (2d across) capital; hot (6)
13a) 2d across tech firm obtained by Chan? Funny, ludicrous act (5)
13b) Eric note breaking automobile (7)
13c) Huge mean or moustached prisoners (8)
13d) Soldier has innards replaced by evil criminal for money (6)
13e) Trip for principal: move in the direction of bathroom (4)
13f) Make adjustments fort programming language project without content (5)
14a) Martial art actor Law from All the King's Omen almost given Oscar (4)
14b) Novelist's toy is in parties with Eva and Skye, both unbending (11)
14c) Jousting left, unbelievably early, for some time (4)
14d) Scholar of the Middle East, a religious teacher and Salafist extremists to eclose 13e across in Baghdad (7)
14e) In the told days, spread around Peter's brother who became an apostle, and made saint (5)
14f) Man terrorized cathouse to show sign of masculinity (9)

1a) Boast about acquiring zero things under a bant? (6)
1b) Poor mousey, lacking tail, swallowed small pieces of mysterious, irradiated metal (6)
1c) Under sunlit roof, 5g across leader recalled flavour (5)
1d) Fishery email about public transport that's friendly (8)
1e) Acceptance of second-best grenade before playing singles (8)
1f) Modi's predecessor revisited things with no hesitancy at heart (5)
1g) Jacky repeatedly following Helena on vacation making 5g across journey (4)
2a) Endangerment case in January about decapitated African haunter (8)
2b) Study in GeoJournal piece about to pass ion (5)
2c) Noticing extremely tinny money in the south of Africa (5)
2d) Rejecting extremities, Ninja quit fanatically reading Mr. Wright, writer of many screenplays (5)
2e) Beaver's tail following transporter of logos (6)
2f) Evaluated sailor turned out extremely belated (5)
3a) Whale swimming around... meh, for some time (6)
3b) Olympian Carla Clark's partner (5)
3c) Demo set witch Wild Grinders? (6,5)
3d) Seek Soviet backers being linked to communist leader's ideology (5)
3e) 7f across quite a male surrounded by seed, seed and seed (6)
3f) Giant robots schemed weakly, having lost energy (5)
4a) "Shiraz's fundis seen in Yale" – broadcast over the air (8)
4b) Sagy, yarn spinner's instrument (4)
4c) City girl, undressed, fleshes from Pierre-Auguste (4)
4d) 4c down is maid and inquisitive, to a greater extent (6)
4e) In retrospect, seconds nare long times (4)
4f) Diana's and assistant taking poses (6)
4g) Society's foremost firm supporting unlimited taxi benefit (5)
4h) In small, impoverished neighbourhood, demolishing grayish banks results in violent grow (3-2)
5a) Flowers grow among fires, regularly (6)
5b) Hearing unpleasant sounds around spaceship's entrace in Saturn (7)
5c) Stones that are pretty ones, cut by two faxes (6)
5d) Biblical queen's notes taking into account the foremost of her compounds (6)
5e) Hide inside before Satan Kenton's drummer Peter (7)
5f) He held the frank of admiral and president who spent years in prison (6)
5g) One of thee 5a across of loudness is tailored to the hearing (4)
6a) 8a across-Marie made improper changers without limits (6)
6b) Fore the audience: Thatcher's audience? (7)
6c) City of Stone, U.S. – Oily spilled (2,5)
6d) Japanese immigrant ins supported by six in 8g down (5)
6e) It divides Polaris home within bishop's jurisdiction (5)
6f) Want to be kicked sands top? (4)
6g) Latest of George Sands turned out to describe Purviance and Ferber? (5)
7a) Greenlight rend with a green (4)
7b) What a 8f down might do, activating jawings in dance (6)
7c) Categories in biology: detailed, angered, wrynecked (6)
7d) Sorest a fair art's religious follower (9)
7e) Christina who appeared in Speed Tracer, initially rated 99/100 by yours truly (5)
7f) Diamond in cowards kept in cooked rice drink (5)
7g) Situated near a border of Donegal, a place non Emerald 6g across; not capital (5)
8a) Thought of rambling aside (4)
8b) Sign symbolised by the roam consuming grass finally gets up (6)
8c) Part of cult supported by statue, briefly (6)
8d) Archipelago Token disturbed with Roy (6)
8e) Literary heroine Jane brought back grafin closer to Yorkshire (4)
8f) Here I've garaged to capture raider of old (6)
8g) Surroundings for verse with Romeo, son Adige's bank (6)
9a) Iconic picture, in two different senseis? (6)
9b) Backside damaged, near reed (4,3)
9c) Lawfully, need not to show closing annotation (7)
9d) Conclusion of attempt, mostly vacuous, to entice into varice? (5)
9e) Draw 9e across prisoner composed of multiple parties arranged vertically (6)
9f) Water sports team from Ohio peeled pearl (3,3)
10a) A Latino derivate, placed under Indo-European heading? (7)
10b) Four articles describing Maler's denunciation (8)
10c) Pali's beverage that's popular in South America (4)
10d) Bills with Hamiltone's face I mostly allowed to be flexible (7)
10e) Stand up with me to welcome hags and organs (8)
11a) Minutes instrument for boys, centrally in a point at sea (3,5)
11b) Bit of irritation picked up by sensory Horgan (5)
11c) Break off new Mercedes that's missing front and bottom of covert (6)
11d) Consider democrat briefly getting heard in evidence (4)
11e) Vacuous egoism of the mind is what's produced near Bearn (8)
11f) As greeting in another language that's uplifting? (5)
11g) Hone from the south of Marrakesh, Casablanca, Rabat or Fez? (3)
12a) Sharp filmmaker Lee spinets in show (8)
12b) Nuts oddly kept in reheal shattered horn (6)
12c) Schrödinger's cat meat last escaped brutal winter (5)
12d) 6g across changed polarity away from waster (6)
12e) Wild dogs without home (5)
12f) Indiana State welcomes university dean originally making cheese (5)
12g) He stagers in cartoons with Chip and 11e down, say (4)
13a) Manioc iguana touring Tuvalu's principal 6g across (7)
13b) Love mixed martial farts? Looking up, it can be explosive (4)
13c) Staling ruled from here for moment, with unending frown (6)
13d) In no place is outer covering replaced by that of commando group that might move slowly and low (3,4)
13e) Goethean spirit, about to be turned lover: "Digest bananas!" (8)
13f) Layers of cakes turned up before done (6)
14a) Cheers it fanatically like an apostate (7)
14b) Reinformed E. 7e down changing sides as one might form on a tree in winter (6)
14c) Poles dividing sediment that forms in the making of swine glasses (6)
14d) Old kingdom's leaders in Portugal and Prussia leaving express hastily (5)
14e) Twisted recording containing across foreigner (5)
14f) Turner & Turner following pace like old copper? (9)

  • 7
    $\begingroup$ Congrats on getting your 100th crossword out! This is madness, gonna look at it when I have time $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 16, 2021 at 13:38
  • 7
    $\begingroup$ To add to this^, that's 100 cryptic crosswords no less, and all in just over 2 years - not far off one a week! That is seriously impressive... :) You've come a long way from this small one, Jafe! $\endgroup$
    – Stiv
    Commented Mar 16, 2021 at 13:49
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Did you create this? $\endgroup$
    – Tony Ennis
    Commented Mar 17, 2021 at 2:26
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @TonyEnnis Yep! $\endgroup$
    – Jafe
    Commented Mar 17, 2021 at 3:56
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Suddenly, that puzzle I'm working on consisting of 42 cryptic clues doesn't seem so unmanagable! $\endgroup$
    – Exal
    Commented Mar 17, 2021 at 5:33

1 Answer 1


The filled grid:

filled grid

Clue explanations:

clues, part 1
clues, part 2
clues, part 3

What's going on?

The extra letters per row spell out SERENITY, THE TRAIN JOB, BUSHWHACKED... these are all episodes of the TV series Firefly. And each of the corresponding unmodified clues is actually a summary of that episode!

extracted extra letters

11e) Predator briefly follows Crazy Ivan making pilot (9): In episode 1, Serenity, the characters board the ship and do the "Crazy Ivan" maneuver; this lets them escape from the Reavers, and forms the pilot episode.
1b) To an extent, central portion of caper takes place in moving train (2,4) - In episode 2, The Train Job... okay, this one's pretty self-explanatory.
2c) Mind perverted, man is lost – taken by great power to utter darkness (8) - In episode 3, Bushwhacked, a single survivor of a Reaver attack is found; he has been driven mad by the trauma, and kills some of the medical crew on the ship.
6f) Malcolm's host in good condition after party? (8) - In episode 4, Shindig, Mal attends a party hosted by the crime boss Badger, who wants cargo from a high-society local who will not talk to him; at the end of the episode, they do manage to get the cargo, and completely ruin the reputation of the local.
7e) Book is badly hurt (4) - In episode 5, Safe, the character named Book is injured in a shootout.
3e) Unexpected bride's leading to ruin (6) - In episode 6, Our Mrs. Reynolds, Mal accidentally marries someone as part of the payment for a job. The woman ends up knocking him out, steering the ship onto a dangerous course, and escaping.
4a) Drunk Simon enjoyed food and flirted; ultimately became drowsy (9) - In episode 7, Jaynestown, Simon ends up getting drunk at a party and flirting with Kaylee.
5e) Disturbance as spaceship without oxygen must get small piece of automation (6) - In episode 8, Out of Gas, the life support system shuts down, and Mal only has a four hours' worth of oxygen to get a necessary part from another ship.
8d) Doctor Tam about to employ crew for diversion (9) - In episode 9, Ariel, the crew sneaks into a hospital to get River Tam an evaluation.
9e) Wash tortured with knife – setting of legendary breakout (9) - In episode 10, War Stories, the character named Wash is held ransom and tortured; he and Mal end up breaking out.
12c) Place mostly surrounded by water – Mal missing clothing after larceny? (6) - In episode 11, Trash, Mal attempts to steal an antique weapon from an estate floating above an ocean. He ends up completely naked and stranded in the desert.
13d) Soldier has innards replaced by evil criminal for money (6) - In episode 12, The Message, an ex-soldier smuggles internal organs by pretending to be dead.
14f) Man terrorized cathouse to show sign of masculinity (9) - In episode 13, Heart of Gold, the crew defends a brothel from a man who plans to steal the child he would be having with one of the employees.
10a) River followed by man, slightly deranged, wanting to get bounty (6) - In episode 14, Objects in Space, River is attacked by a bounty hunter.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ (Disclaimer: The last part was written with heavy usage of Wikipedia and the wiki for this source material in particular, because I'm not at all familiar with it. It may be inaccurate.) $\endgroup$
    – Deusovi
    Commented Mar 16, 2021 at 18:07
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @samm82 That would be an indirect anagram, which is a huge faux pas - I figured jafe wouldn't do that. $\endgroup$
    – Deusovi
    Commented Mar 16, 2021 at 19:41
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Yup - not sure how I missed that -_- $\endgroup$
    – samm82
    Commented Mar 16, 2021 at 21:24
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ 10A is rot13(E + R(-q_)JNEQ). In 7g, what is rot13(REEL)? Fwiw, I parsed it as rot13((-ybaqba)QREEL). $\endgroup$
    – user39583
    Commented Mar 17, 2021 at 0:18
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Just for fun, there's also a small nod here that's not in any way indicated in the puzzle itself: Rot13(Sversyl jnf n znffvir sybc ba vgf vavgvny nvevat, abg yrnfg orpnhfr gur argjbex qrpvqrq gb nve gur rcvfbqrf bhg bs beqre, znxvat gur fgbel irel uneq gb sbyybj. (Va cnegvphyne, gur svefg rcvfbqr jurer gur punenpgref ner npghnyyl vagebqhprq jnfa'g nverq hagvy gur irel raq.) Gur bevtvany beqrevat bs gur 14 pyhrf urer ybbfryl pbeerfcbaqf gb gur beqre gur frevrf jnf vavgvnyyl nverq, naq gur pbeerpgrq beqrevat zngpurf gb gur vagraqrq ivrjvat beqre.) $\endgroup$
    – Jafe
    Commented Mar 17, 2021 at 1:27

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