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"Here is a group of words with a specific property-- except for one", said Grandpa. He had his Merriam Webster dictionary out.

I looked at them.

Raking

Finest

Latest

Parent

Flawed

Piking

Basest

Really

"They are all six letter words and all start and end with consonants", I observed.

"Brilliant, Einstein!" Grandpa interrupted.

"Now one word in that group not only follows that property, but extends it further. It stands out."

"Also, I just checked in my dictionary. One of the words does not belong to this group," said Grandpa.

"So what is that property, and what are those two words, son? Make sure your answer only involves MW or Collins dictionary words and no proper nouns or abbreviations are allowed."

I started scratching my head.

HINT

Focus on 2 letters at a time

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  • $\begingroup$ Just to clarify, are "except for one" at the start and "One of the words does not belong to this group" referring to the same thing, or are these two odd-ones-out of different kinds somehow? $\endgroup$ – Gareth McCaughan Mar 9 at 20:15
  • $\begingroup$ Both are same statements @Gareth McCaughan. Thanks $\endgroup$ – DrD Mar 9 at 21:17
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The property is each word can be broken into its initial or latter two-thirds and be a valid 4 letter word. Raking extends this property as its middle two-thirds (not sure that's the best way to say that?) is also a valid 4 letter word. Basest is the exclusion, as it doesn't end in a valid 4 letter word.

Raking

This is our word extending the rule as it can be broken into 3 four letter words as opposed to two. 'raki' is a Turkish liquor, then we have 'akin' in the middle 4, and 'king' at the end.

Finest

for this we get 'fine' and 'nest'

Latest

here we get 'late' and 'test'

Parent

here we get 'pare' and 'rent'

Flawed

and this is 'flaw' and 'awed'

Piking

this is 'piki' (a traditional southwestern US native american bread) and 'king'

Basest

This is our odd one out as it only has a 4 letter word to start, 'base'

Really

lastly this is 'real' and 'ally'

Thanks @Prim3numbah and @GarethMcCaughan, I got a huge head start reading your answers. Also not sure mine is enough different to be right/what OP is looking for, but wanted to point out they all start with valid 4 letter words as well.

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  • 2
    $\begingroup$ You've gone further than Prim3numbah and Gareth, but I've managed to take it even further. How deep does this rabbit hole go? $\endgroup$ – Rand al'Thor Mar 12 at 12:20
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I believe the property is..

The last 4 letters of the words form another word. These are Finest, Latest, Parent, Flawed, Piking, Really. The only word that extends this property is Raking(two words; a king). And the word that doesn't belong to this group of words is basest because sest is not a word in the MW or Collins dictionary.

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  • $\begingroup$ Check again @Prim3numbah. Which word stands out and why? There is a lot more to this. $\endgroup$ – DrD Mar 9 at 13:50
  • $\begingroup$ rot13(v whfg ernyvfrq 'n grfg' naq 'n erag' vf nyfb gjb jbeqf. Qvqa'g ernyyl guvax guvf bar guebhtu :Q Ohg sebz jung v pna frr, gur jbeq 'ernyyl' qbrf abg raq jvgu n pbafbanag. Naq gur jbeq 'synjrq'vf gur bayl jbeq gung unf n pbafbanag nf n frpbaq yrggre.) $\endgroup$ – Prim3numbah Mar 9 at 18:42
  • $\begingroup$ Lbh jrer xvaq bs ba gur evtug genpx. Xrrc ybbxvat sbe jbeqf vafvqr gurfr jbeqf $\endgroup$ – DrD Mar 9 at 21:29
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Extending the answers previously given even further, and following the latest hint:

each word can have two adjacent letters removed from it in at least three different ways (removing letters 1&2, 3&4, 5&6) and still give a valid word.

In fact,

all except FLAWED and REALLY can have two adjacent letters removed in at least four different ways and still give a valid word. Even the exception BASEST still fits this condition. And the outstanding word is PARENT, which can have two adjacent letters removed in any of the maximum possible five ways and still give a valid word!

Raking:

KING, RANG, RAKI, also RING, but not RAKG.

Finest:

NEST, FIST, FINE, also FEST, but not FINT.

Latest:

TEST, LAST, LATE, also LEST, but not LATT.

Parent:

RENT, PENT, PANT, PART, PARE. This one is outstanding!

Flawed:

AWED, FLED, FLAW, but not FWED or FLAD.

Piking:

KING, PING, PIKI, also PING (again), but not PIKG.

Basest:

BEST, BAST, BASE, also BAST (again), but not SEST. This one is the exception.

Really:

ALLY, RELY, REAL, but not RLLY or REAY.

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  • $\begingroup$ rot13(Guvf frrzf evtug. Rkprcg, yvxr lbh fnl, gung vg'f gjb jbeqf gung qb abg sbyybj gur cebcregl. V guvax znlor gur jbeq gung qb abg orybat va guvf tebhc vf "Ernyyl". Sbe nabgure ernfba. Nppbeqvat gb gur zreevnz jrofgre qvpgvbanel(fvapr ur unq n ZJ qvpgvbanel jvgu uvz), l vf pbafvqrerq n ibjry vs vgf ng gur raq bs n jbeq. Naq vgf haqrefgbbq, gung gur fgneg naq gur raq bs gur jbeqf zhfg or pbafbanagf. Pbhyq or bire-guvaxvat vg bsp, ohg jnagrq gb cbvag gung bhg. $\endgroup$ – Prim3numbah Mar 12 at 14:44
  • $\begingroup$ @Prim3numbah That comment didn't even need to be rot13'ed ... nothing in there is giving away the answer. $\endgroup$ – Rand al'Thor Mar 12 at 14:46
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    $\begingroup$ @Rand al'Thor, you took it one step further. I was thinking of just removal of 2 consecutive letters and still have valid words. So Raking : King, Rang and Raki. Parent is the only one where the 2 letters can be removed consecutively as you pointed out: Rent, Pent, Pant, Part and Pare. $\endgroup$ – DrD Mar 12 at 15:14
  • $\begingroup$ @DEEM I don't understand the distinction you're making? I'm also looking at the removal of 2 consecutive letters each time, in each of the different ways that can be done. $\endgroup$ – Rand al'Thor Mar 12 at 15:35
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    $\begingroup$ It is OK now @R $\endgroup$ – DrD Mar 12 at 22:06
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I'm pretty sure Prim3numbah has the basic property right:

all but BASEST end with a valid 4-letter word.

Perhaps the one that stands out is

RAKING

since

AKIN (letters 2..5) is a word as well as KING (letters 3..6).

I have to confess that

this seems less impressive to me than two of the other words, LATEST and PARENT, both of which have the property that if you divide the letters into pairs LA|TE|ST or PA|RE|NT then any two of the pairs make a word: LATE, LAST, TEST; PARE, PANT, RENT. But there doesn't seem to be much to choose between these two, whereas RAKING is the only one with a 4-letter word in the middle. (Some dictionaries list ST as a word, in which case LATEST would win because LA and TE are both words too, being sol-fa note names; but M-W and Collins don't do that.)

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