Quadrivial Quandary:  Logophiles, Rejoice!  Each day we give you four unusual words.  Can you fit them all in one illustrative sentence?

Attempts to resolve the Quandary:


But there was one other totally unaware of the events which were to take place and would make Edinburgh the talk of the world for the next few days; she lay for a long time, aware only of the darkness and a kind of numbness which suffused her whole body; she remembered a vicious assault which had probably only lasted a few seconds, but to here mind seemed to have gone on for an eternity – she had no recollection of where or when it had taken place, so extreme had it been that it seemed to have closed down her memory, along with other parts of her sensory system; indeed, she lay in this all-embracing darkness for a long time before she realised that her eyes were shut; but she opened them very slowly, afraid – with a deep dread such as she had never known before – but with no knowledge of the source of that fear, other than it had something to do with the calamitous blow that had struck her – where, somewhere; once her eyes were partly open she became aware that the darkness was no longer so absolute; it had substance and depth, with little swirling eddies and shimmering in places, occasional movements which took the form of slightly darker shadows making small adjustments; but so far, there was no sound – not that she expected any, for she expected nothing; in that sense, she felt like a new-born babe besoming aware that it had left the safety and warmth and security that had been it's home for as long as it could remember anything; but she was not a new-born, though she could not have said what or who she was; and who was to say that this was not home – she could not remember any previous place, so she simply accepted that she was herself and she was where she was and that was all there was to know; the pain was not so severe as it might have been and at first she could not locate it, but that was because it was like a single voice rising slightly above the general babble of a crowd and if she listened hard she might be able to work out where or was; yes, she found it, it was around her neck and somehow, without consciously doing it, she became aware of her hand – which one, she was unsure – moving towards the pain and then her fingers were brushing across some kind of fabric collar that was wound around her neck, but the pain was now more specifically at the front, or slightly to the left and when she tried to press, it was worse, so she dropped her hand back, and it rested across her body, and she closed her eyes for a few moments and slept for three hours; and this time, when she woke, though to her it had passed as swiftly as the second hand of her watch moving one tick in it's passage around the face, but this time, she opened her eyes more fully, and some of the shadows were different – they had strange shapes and forms and she didn't understand what they were; if she was alive, and she wasn't too sure of that, and she wasn't too sure of anything, and she was hopelessly unsure of who she was and why she was wherever this is; and it was during this disassociated time that her world tipped on it's axis and she found her brain at loggerheads with her senses for while she was gazing at the different shadows which were her entire frame of reference, the face appeared right in front of hers: it was a child's face, but no cherubic, rosy-cheeked face, full of good-humour and happiness – rather ir was a pinched, sallow face, with scratches and unruly dark hair and dirt – such dirt as she had never before seen smeared across a small child's face; she didn't know what kind of dirt it was but it repelled her and she instinctively drew her head back, trying to gain some distance, but her head banged against something hard and sharp and sore, and she winced, and that only triggered a spasm in her shoulders which did something to her neck and the dull throb which seemed to be her normal state, was seared by a flash of white lightening that blotted out everything for a few seconds and before she could see again, she could hear the child's excited pleasure at her reactions; and when she dared open her eyes again, there were more faces around the child's all staring at her, and all dirty, and unkempt and some of them bearded and all of them displaying curious interest in her; and although she thought was rather rude, she felt inhibited by both her restricted movement and the exhaustion which weighed heavily upon her – if they think I'm so interesting and, obviously, amusing, it just shows how little they've got in their own lives; and then she immediately felt guilt for that thought – whoever they were, they seemed to be concerned for her, they had obviously found her somewhere and brought her here for shelter and care; they must have bandaged her neck on account of whatever injury she had sustained, and given her the peace her body needed for it to recover from whatever trauma had befallen her; and from somewhere in a distant recess she remembered a Chemistry class at school when the Science Mistress had spoken of the waters of crystallization and used that as an example of dehydration which can be affect any organic or inert entity and she wondered if she was perhaps dehydrated and in a fever, when the small child's face in the centre of her vision was replaced by a large shell, such as she remembered years back student flats using as ash-trays, but this one held a liquid and, as it passed over her – she now realized – cracked lips and parched tongue and began to trickle down her throat, she understood that she must indeed be dehydrated, so she emptied the bowl and held it out for more – but the child who seized it didn't come back, and as she slumped back on whatever kind of bed it was that she lay on, the other faces drifted out of view and she sank back into sleep; the next time she woke and opened her eyes, much of the absolute darkness and gloom had gone and there was a suffused and reflected light filling a larger portion of her view; the source – the sun, she supposed – was out of view, but the light crept quite a way in towards where she lay; and now she could see that she was in some kind of roughly hewn house, or cavern, with blocks of stone and a stone floor, or maybe compacted dirt, but it was a chamber devoid of soft furnishings – of any furnishings – or decoration and she realized with a shock that she wasn't lying on a bed at all, but rather a kind of stone shelf, cushioned in what felt like fur, over something soft, like moss or grasses, and the blanket which covered her was also a furry pelt, and she felt for her clothes – she didn't have any, just a pelt wrapped around her body; and the wrapping round her neck –  it came away easily when she tugged, and it seemed to be some kind of plant, flattened and softened and then, with her finger-tips she felt the span of raised skin which crossed from below her left ear round to just beyond the point beneath her chin, and the butterfly stitches which held the two sides together – what the fuck is going on, she wanted to cry out, but no words formed in her mouth; where am I, who am I beholden to, who are these people – so laconic, so silent in fact, she wondered if they even had a language at all, or were a bunch of mutes who's congregated here for safety and shelter, or – Oh My God – her thoughts leaping around and the suppressed hysteria mounting inside her almost pro rata as she felt she was completely losing it – all control, all her grip on reality; she groaned, and fell back, tears pouring from her still-swollen eyes, and, when she could see through them, the blurry faces were back, seemingly concerned for her distress, seeming to sense her confusion and the pain she was suffering, wanting to help; the child's face came close and she slowly raised her hand until she could stroke the unkempt hair – was it a boy or a girl, she wondered, and then the child's hand reached out and carefully wiped her tears away and then held up another shell-full of - water she supposed - and she drank it, and she thought, what the fuck, and surrendered to an acceptance of everything, to slough off the restraints that the paralysis of analysis had brought her and to live with the consequences, whatever they may be, and when she smiled, smiles appeared on all the other faces and the child leaned closer and their two noses rubbed together in greeting.

(by MissTeriWoman)
The Quandary for Friday, August 21, 2015 consisted of: Challenge: use all four words together in one illustrative sentence.

Since September 2009, word lovers have offered 7879 sentences — each one a surprise — to QQ's unique and growing library. Explore other Quandaries through our word list or the calendar below. View yesterday's QQ resolutions or pick a day at random.


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