Another cryptic crossword, with a twist! Each 2x2 group of yellow tiles forms a room, which are each assigned a number via the Roman numerals found in a room's lower-right corner. More details about them below:
Cryptic Crossword: Askew
2. Criminal leaders, commonplace amongst thieves and spies, finally departed and wept. (5)
4. The reader at last: torn, wrung, broke, poor, and with fewer years to their name. (7)
7. Grecian mathematics, cut short, meets German stone. (5)
9. Salt variety mopes about. (5)
11. Literary work has no beginning to describe romantic flower. (4)
13. Woodwind instruments' tests includes a final crescendo and forgoes the first two parts. (5)
15. I do it angrily like a moron. (5)
17. The greenhouse was split in two; the eastern half became my home. (3)
18. State a puzzling enigma without an initial guess. (5)
20. Dreaming period is merely the back half. (3 abbr.)
22. Newton is a cooler unit. (5)
24. Brutally fatal, with you and without a mistake. (5)
26. Typical disease? (3 abbr.)
28. I heard a drain was briefly out of order. (1,4)
30. Japanese city secretly scrubbed off. (3)
32. A face to the crowd. (5)
34. Join together to untie a knot. (5)
36. Miso vegetables of renown cut first. (4)
37. Iron forged after the second morning for a legendary hunter. (5)
39. A peak time, for you instead of me. (5)
41. Tart vegetable is, primarily, really hearty combined with a bend and a thorn. (7)
42. Award "of sincere consideration and recognition", which must be shortened. (5)
1. A poem of deifying exaltation, when taken at face value. (3)
2. Bearer of the telecommunicator. (7)
3. Encouraged to have affixed it with no price. (5)
4. Affirmative - no eye patch can hide it. (3)
5. Count Elmer's skin removal was painless. (4)
6. Stir around our compass's direction. (5)
8. Sister to 12D: Symbol of change. (5)
10. Confusingly, zoos consume energy to produce slimes. (5)
12. Sister to 8D: Symbol of summer. (5)
14. New rule: a fudge diet must include a fruity vitamin. (5)
16. Removes redundancy in gloves following the first order. (5)
19. Cuts giggles, removes the beginning, and edits out the short hospital scene. (5)
21. Actor Zac swaps the initials of his feathery plant as it absorbs oxygen. (5)
23. Was assigned work with no time remaining, as requested. (5)
25. Alert about the future. (5)
27. Report on standard units found in medical administration, before initial release. (7)
29. Short member of positive set puts time into tiny prefix. (3 abbr., 2 abbr.)
31. The trickster is formed from the elder's heart, half of your soul, and the reaper's legs. (5)
33. Two-part performances are battles without a losing side; they take time instead. (5)
35. Shake up the bottom, remove to make a grave. (4)
38. Executive finance handler manipulates mob. (3 abbr.)
40. Acknowledge that the mafia leader's back. (3)
The clues below do not behave like cryptic clues. Rather, each clue contains one or more definitions of words that can be formed by the letters found in the room. For example, if a room contains H,S,P, and I, its clue may include definitions for both SHIP and HIPS. All answers below are four letters long, and the letters may be arranged in any manner on the grid.
I. Pushed to the brink.
II. Urinated a long way down.
III. Explosively loud.
IV. Kernel of letters.
V. Calendar anchor to take a stance and passes away.
VI. Submicroscopic trench.
VII. Wave function.
VIII. Felines' routines causes roster to be shooed away.
X. Finally, season muscles through a thin opening.
XIII. Reverse noodles.
XIV. Habitually broke.
XV. Singular satellite.
XVI. Mucus? A lot of negatives.
After completing the grid, you should be able to answer the questions below. However, you are not required to solve the Bonus Challenges to have an answer be accepted.
Part A. The completed grid forms a maze; the correct path through it will pass through 10 rooms. The ends of the path lie on the "1" and "30" tiles of the crossword. How does it work and what is the solution?
Part B. Using the letters on the perimeter, how would you describe yourself?