JUPITER The Right Ship in the Wrong Place

Discussion in 'Open Roleplay' started by Karen Ashoka, Jan 13, 2019.

  1. Karen Ashoka

    Karen Ashoka Pilot on the MCRN Atrax

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    MCRN Simurgh - Hangar

    Karen stood to attention, even with most of her body screaming out in pain from various locations, she apparently still had to be chewed out by a superior officer before she could go to the Med Bay. Apparently, it was her fault that the Atrax was currently full of holes and not in several thousand pieces on the other side of the system. It was also her fault she "lost" an "entire goddamn weapons pod" and that she didn't even know "how much those goddamn things cost us". She just stood there, eyes straight, shoulders back, mouth shut.

    After she was dismissed, she took one more look over her shoulder at her bird. It was a sorry sight, but the hundreds of maintenance drones swarming over it, repairing the damage of the last sortie, were already making it look better. New armour plates were being added, holes welded shut, charred crash couches pulled out and replaced...

    MCRN Simurgh - Med Bay

    The moment the auto-doc latched onto her arm her world became soft, bright and squishy. Whatever drugs it was pumping into her system made her feel a hundred times better. Apparently, she had burst several blood vessels in her eyes, she had a severely dislocated shoulder and several broken ribs. But all of those were being patched up by the top of the line automated equipment in the medical bay of the Simurgh.

    As the machines did their work, she watched a terminal at the end of her bed. It showed the current situation from the perspective of the MCRN "Media Corps", a relatively new division formed to try and keep morale high during the outbreak of all-out war across the system. The MCRN reinforcement fleet had arrived with another mighty Donnager-class battleship, sending the UNN fleets scuttling for cover.

    The camera feeds showed undamaged warships triumphantly arriving over Ganymede, their black and red hulls glistening proudly in the reflected light from Jupiter. The camera then changed to another feed, of an enormous starship burning hard with an escort of Martian corvette-class frigates. The ship was unlike any Martian design she had seen, it was utterly alien to her. But as the headline scrolled across the screen it began to make sense.

    NPS Daedelus En-Route to Jupiter to Bolster Fleet Support & Logistics. As footage of the ship continued to play, a reporter began to speak, "The "Daedalus" Support Cruiser has been contracted by the Navy to assist in the rescue and salvage of MCRN ships during the outbreak of hostilities before Mars and Earth, in the Jovian System. The vessel was constructed at shipyards at New Providence Station, and was designed as a support ship for its fleet of rescue corvettes, two of which will also be operating in the system." Karen sat up with a grunt of pain, focussing on the screen with clearer eyes. "The vessel supports a hospital and several repair and refit bays for ships of various class and construction. It will be put to work rescuing sailors trapped aboard shipwrecks during the ongoing skirmishes with the United Nations Navy..." She leaned back down, not paying as much attention now. Good for those poor souls trapped on those ships...She thought as she drifted off to sleep.

    MCRN - Hangar

    Karen stood at attention once again, two other Martians, her new crew, stood next to her. In front of them, a Martian Officer stood facing them. He was a man of few words, saying that the Atrax had been refit and was ready for flight once again. Due to Karen's flight record, she was being sent out on a new mission, and that the details would be provided to them en-route. After a curt nod, the man turned on his heel and stalked off.

    Karen turned to her two new crewmembers. "Lieutenant Karen Ashoka, at your service!" She said, pulling on her flight suit.
     
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  2. Liz Ritter

    Liz Ritter Engineer on the MCRN Atrax

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    Liz ate a piece of apple pie as she told her friends about her new assignment.
    “Some little bird called the Atrax,” she said. “I helped fix it and now I have to help fly it.”
    “Guess you get to check your work.”
    “Guess so,” she said, forking the last bite of pie across her plate. “Gonna miss this, you guys.”
    “Gonna miss you too, cowgirl.”

    •●•​

    She stood at attention next to a stone-faced man and woman. The officer before her debriefed them. He explained that the Atrax had been refit and was now fit for duty. With a curt nod, he walked away.
    “Lieutenant Karen Ashoka, at your service!” said the blonde-haired woman beside her. Liz stuck out a hand and said, “Liz Ritter!
    “Wanna show me around that ship of yours? And who have we here?”
    She turned to face the somber man from before.
     
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  3. Buck Bardsley

    Buck Bardsley MCRN Master Chief Petty Officer

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    Bardsley listened to the senior officer giving them a run down. He was incredibly bored by it but he stood still, not moving, not saying anything.

    As the Officer finished his explanation and left them to get acquainted with each other, Buck turned around to face his new shipmates.

    "Master Chief petty Officer Buck Bardsley, I am gonna be your new Gunner."

    He turned around to take a proper look at the Atrax.

    "So this is the Atrax, eh? How about we take a look inside?" he asked.

    He picked up his Vac Suit, he´d already been wearing his flight suit. Over the years it had become his second skin.

    ...

    @Liz Ritter @Karen Ashoka
     
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  4. Karen Ashoka

    Karen Ashoka Pilot on the MCRN Atrax

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    Karen grinned and held up her hand, gesturing for the two new crewmembers to head towards the vessel. "She's been through a lot recently, so they might not be in the best nick. But she's home and has enough for the three of us to...hopefully live comfortably." As they loped along in the microgravity of the shipyard the Simurgh was docked at, Karen eyed the swarms of robotic drones that moved over the ships hull, using tiny devices to blast off chipped paint, buff out scorch marks and spray down a fresh coat of paint. It was like the ship renewed itself before her eyes. She smiled wearily, feeling disorientated from the drinks she had imbibed earlier.

    They walked along the underside of the vessel, its sleek, smooth lines at odds with the harsh, angular design language of the rest of Martian engineering. They arrived under the weapons bay, where Karen reached up and tapped as a small keypad. With a hiss and a cloud of atmosphere, a portal slid open, and a ladder descended. She gripped it and climbed up into the Atrax.

    After Buck and Liz had also climbed in, she flipped several switches on a wall panel, and lights began to flicker on. "I usually don't keep the lights on because its generally just me in here, but feel free to do what makes you most comfortable." They stood in the cargo hold come weapons bay, a long and narrow room dominated by a large cylindrical structure which bristled with weaponry — missiles of various configurations, unguided bombs, even three torpedoes. "Weapons bay," she said, motioning around them, "this is I'm guessing where you'll be hanging out a lot Buck? Or the Ops Deck, whatever suits your work style. The last guy used to hang in here a lot but lost a lot of his hearing from the constant weapon launches, so make sure you keep your ear protection handy."

    @Liz Ritter @Buck Bardsley
     
    #4 Karen Ashoka, Jan 14, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2019
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  5. Buck Bardsley

    Buck Bardsley MCRN Master Chief Petty Officer

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    Buck watched as Karen opened up the belly of the Atrax. The ship was beautiful. He had never really liked spaceships, too blocky, to square to emotionless. But this gorgeous lady was a different thing. It was smooth and full of love.

    He extended his hand and touched the hull as he walked.

    When the Lieutenant opened the weapons bay, Bucks eyes began to shine.

    He smiled. "Yeah this is my thing. I am already liking this baby."

    Turning around to Ashoka he said "Gonna have to get acquainted with this later."

    ...

    @Karen Ashoka @Liz Ritter
     
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  6. Liz Ritter

    Liz Ritter Engineer on the MCRN Atrax

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    The man introduced himself as Buck Bardsley, their new gunner. Karen then showed them the way to the Atrax, and Liz had butterflies in her stomach. It was like unwrapping a present.
    The Atrax's smooth exterior opened and a ladder descended, which they all climbed one at a time. Karen started flicking on lights and showing them around, and Buck checked out the weapons.
    “So where’s engineering?” asked Liz, eagerly.
    “Port and starboard,” Karen replied. “I'll show you.”
    They arrived at Engineering, and Liz tried hard not to show her surprise at it's small size.
    “It's...quaint,” she said. “Kind of a tight fit.”
    “The Atrax's design makes it necessary.”
    “I'm sure it'll start to feel like home. I'm just used to the Simurgh right now. As long as it has what we need, that's enough.”
    Lights and wires and conduits sprawled across every surface of the tiny Engineering compartment and Liz glanced over every inch of it, naming the components in her head.
    “Checks out. Let's go see the rest of this goose.”
     
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  7. Karen Ashoka

    Karen Ashoka Pilot on the MCRN Atrax

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    "Alright, if you would follow me," she turned and ducked through the low doorway back into the weapons bay and then turned right through another small doorway. They were small enough that each crewmember had to duck their heads to get under it, whilst stepping over the high threshold to get through to the next compartment. When they all emerged they were in another cramped room, however, this one was dead silent and lined with instrument panels and displays all angled to be visible from the two crash couches in the centre, one behind the other.

    "This is the Ops deck, where the two of you will most likely spend most of your time," she said, before turning on her side and squeezing between the crash couches and the edge of the cabin, heading towards the front. "It's cramped, but it's also kinda cosy. Straight ahead," she motioned towards a circular doorway that looked much like an airlock, "is the cockpit, where I live pretty much. To starboard," she motioned to the right where another doorway was, "is the galley, and to port" she pointed to the left at another door, "is the quarters, head, showers etcetera."

    She flicked her hair out of her face and stared at the two new crewmembers for a moment as they took it all in. "Your personal effects should already be in your quarters so really," she looked around the ops deck for a moment before hitting a button on the bulkhead, causing the cockpit portal to iris open, "we can leave at any time. You guys wanna take her out for a spin?"
     
  8. Buck Bardsley

    Buck Bardsley MCRN Master Chief Petty Officer

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    When Karen suggested that they should take her out for a ride he turned his head to face her.

    He smiled. "Hell yeah. Let's find out what this chick can do!"

    Buck seated himself into the Gunner couch. It was not that different from a normal MCRN crash couch. It felt like home. He had spend a lot of time in these.

    Like that Bard started to get acquainted with the systems.

    ...

    @Karen Ashoka @Liz Ritter
     
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  9. Karen Ashoka

    Karen Ashoka Pilot on the MCRN Atrax

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    "Great, buckle up pardners!" She said, a southern twang suddenly coming to the surface of her accent. She made her way to the portal leading to the cockpit and gripping two handholds above the circular entrance, jumped through feet first. As she entered the cockpit it began to light up, the crash couch swivelling to face her. "Evenin' darlin'," she said, as she bucked herself in. After a quick preflight she pulled her helmet on and went through the motions of firing the Atrax up. After a few switch flips and several terminal commands, a low whine and steady rumble began to emanate from the rear decks.

    Looking over her shoulder she saw the two new crewmembers were strapped in. She gave the thumbs up sign over her shoulder, both of them responding with the same. "Simurgh control this is Atrax actual, requesting permission to undock," she spoke into the microphone, as she checked on the vessels systems. She was consistently impressed by Martian technology, it had barely been three days since she had docked back on the Simurgh and the Atrax felt like brand new, it even smelled new. "Atrax actual, you are cleared for undocking. Simurgh Control out, happy flying out there."

    Gripping the controls the whine from the engines became a roar before she flipped a switch and closed the doors between the ops deck and engineering which somewhat dulled the noise. The doors thudded together with a pneumatic hiss, followed by the lights in both ops and the cockpit dimming, and holographic controls appearing around the three crash couches. With a metallic thunk, the ship reversed out of the hangar using its teakettle thrusters, before Karen angled the nose up and away from the Simurgh before starting the countdown. "Drive ignition in three...two...one...mark!"

    @Buck Bardsley @Liz Ritter
     
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  10. Liz Ritter

    Liz Ritter Engineer on the MCRN Atrax

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    Liz jumped into her crash couch and strapped herself in. Thumbs up were exchanged, and Karen confirmed their embankment with the Simurgh. She took the Atrax out with her maneuvering thrusters before flicking up the stick and punching the ignition.
    Liz felt the crash couch hit her like a linebacker from behind, and they were off.

    “So…” she said. “Now that we're off, what's your stories? Can't be sharing a ship with strangers.”
     
  11. Karen Ashoka

    Karen Ashoka Pilot on the MCRN Atrax

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    Karen watched as the moon of Callisto quickly receded in the background and as Jupiter slowly grow to fill almost half of the entire cockpit. The relented on the acceleration somewhere, scaling it back to a comfortably 0.5Gs, enough for them to walk around in at least. "Well...running missions out here and killing blues...You remember the news articles about the lost city? Tanis? Well, I was the pilot who got shot down out there. Before being a space pilot I used to patrol the northern reaches back on Mars...it's funny where you end up when the brass don't want you talking to anyone and embarrassing them. I bet they're probably annoyed I haven't been killed yet.

    How about you two? You guys seem awfully plucky for two people assigned to the highest risk warship in the fleet."
     
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  12. Liz Ritter

    Liz Ritter Engineer on the MCRN Atrax

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    Liz sighed.
    “All the chaos has the bureaucrats going crazy. This is my fourth transfer in six months. I've been so busy I haven't kept up with news, I guess.”
    She propped her feet up on her display and put her hands behind her head.
    “Anyway, yeah, been on the Simurgh mostly tightening loose bolts. Until your girl showed up, that is. Hell of a beating you gave her. If you keep treating her like that, I'll have my work cut out for me.”
    She gave an admonishing look, and a grin that showed it wasn't serious.
    "What about you, big guy? Where you from? Awful short for a Martian, ain't ya?"
     
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  13. Buck Bardsley

    Buck Bardsley MCRN Master Chief Petty Officer

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    When the Atrax fired up it´s engines there was a raw power in it, a sort of primal feel in the very un-primal engine roar. It felt good, for Buck it felt like home. He'd never been welcome on Mars, he was earth born, but he had never been welcome on Earth either.

    Space had always welcomed him with it cold embrace. Ships were his life.

    His eyes narrowed, he didn't like those kinda questions. "Was born on Earth. Ya´ll would call me and ma family late time immigrants. But let me tell ya one thing, I am more martian than most martians I met in my life. Ya´ll lack the balls, no offense. Just ´cause I've spend four years down the well doesn't mean I am a fucking traitor. "

    He slouched himself into his crash couch in a position that told his comrades to challenge him.

    ...

    @Liz Ritter @Karen Ashoka
     
  14. Karen Ashoka

    Karen Ashoka Pilot on the MCRN Atrax

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    A burst of laughter erupted from the cockpit, seconds before the engine roared once again and the crew were smashed into the crash couches, Karen wrenched hard on the control stick, sending the Atrax into a tumbling backflip, focussing the combined G-forces right into the crew's midsections. She grunted with mild surprise as the juice kicked in, but not before dropping thrust, spinning the ship around again and pulling the same manoeuvre, her vision narrowing and her body feeling like a desert rover had parked itself on her hips. Just as several health warnings appeared on her screen she cut thrust, sending them back on their original course at 0 G's. As the massive acceleration once again subsided she rotated her crash couch on its gimbal to face the two new crewmembers.

    With a grin, she stared down through the portal at Buck, "how those balls feelin' now cowboy?" The man grimaced, his tanned skin several shades paler, Liz didn't look much better, at least she wouldn't have felt like she’d taken several dropkicks to the groin a moment earlier. "You two should know that on this ship there are no Martians, no Blues, no fucking belters, nothing. Your enemy is the void, PDC rounds and torpedos. Your allies are each other and the Atrax. Is that understood?"

    She rotated her couch back around as the two recruits replied. The Atrax purred with barely restrained power, a thrumming vibration making its way through the controls, her hands and up her arms. The ship was ready, she could tell, it hungered for war. As if by coincidence, new orders appeared on her screen:

    Mars-CentCom: MCRN Atrax is to make best speed to MCRN Recovery Fleet. UNN attack expected on NPS Daedalus and escorts working on rescue operations.

    "Strap in sailors, we have our orders," she called back, pushing the thrust back up. The Atrax leapt forwards, breaking from its orbit around Callisto and rocketing towards Jupiter. She would bring the ship in close to the gas giant, using its upper atmosphere as cover before ducking back out into space and heading straight for the Daedalus which was currently in orbit around Europa.

    @Liz Ritter @Buck Bardsley
     
    #14 Karen Ashoka, Jan 24, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2019
  15. Liz Ritter

    Liz Ritter Engineer on the MCRN Atrax

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    She had clearly struck a nerve. Liz was about to clumsily attempt to explain her way out of the awkwardness when a burst of maniacal laughter came from the cockpit and she was forced to brace herself against her couch. Karen burned hard enough for the ship to juice them once and then cut thrust.

    “Yes sir,” Liz said queasily, and then, under her breath, “Tough ship.”
    She cut her eyes over to Buck, who was staring straight ahead without expression.
    “Meant nothing by it, partner,” she said. “Hell, I've got an outie belly button.”
    At that moment, an alert popped up across their screens and Karen punched the gas.
    Liz felt the weight of the conversation lift, and the weight of thrust push down on her. She let it push the air out of her lungs like a sigh and closed her eyes for a moment. When she opened them, she could see Jupiter's hulking mass coming up fast. Karen brought the Atrax low, using the thin clouds as cover before heading straight for the giant contraption that was the Daedalus.
     
  16. Karen Ashoka

    Karen Ashoka Pilot on the MCRN Atrax

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    Karen set the ship on autopilot and cut thrust. They were on the float now, flying ballistic through the swirling clouds of Jupiter. The shipboard computer would eventually inform her when the next burn was required but they had several hours before that was required.

    Pulling herself up against the inside edge of the cockpit she clicked her boots together and slammed them down against the deck. The cockpits 360 degree view was showing nothing but grey red swirls of clouds, Sol glimmered in the distance, and below them the dark depths of Jupiter roiled.

    With the telltale clunk of magboots on metal she walked into the ops deck, looking at her two new recruits for a moment before motioning with her head towards the galley. “It’s about time we got acquainted sailors. Mess hall in ten minutes.”

    She expertly peeled her magboots off the deck and threw herself through the narrow portal to the galley where she fired up the little, shitty coffee machine in the corner and sat down on a magnetic stool. She waited for the others to gather themselves first, taking the moment to untie her hair and let it drift around her head in the zero G.

    Back straight, eyes closed, slow breathing. Eventually, the two crew members came in and sat down. She sat at the table for several minutes while they sat there awkwardly, before opening her eyes and gazing at them both.
     
    #16 Karen Ashoka, Jan 25, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2019
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  17. Buck Bardsley

    Buck Bardsley MCRN Master Chief Petty Officer

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    If the effects of the sudden acceleration wouldn't have kept him dizzy, Buck would´ve made some sharp comments to his Lieutenants reaction to his statement. But he couldn't think clearly so he instead responded with a mumbled "Yes, Ma´am"

    This was not an unusual reaction if someone made a comment on his origin. People gave him shit for being a Earthborn left, right and centre all throughout his life even though he was more patriotic and more true to the Martian ideals than any of those how´d done so. This statement was never a attack, it was a statement of the situation. He was willing to throw himself into the meat grinder for Mars without expecting a medal for it, a thing most martians wouldn't do.

    He grit his teeth and turned his head to Ritter. "No hard feelings mate. Just want to get that shit clear."

    When the thrust kicked back in Buck took a deep breath and closed his eyes. There wasn't much to fo at the moment for a gunner, so he just sat in his crash couch and waited until they´d arrive at their destination.

    @Liz Ritter @Karen Ashoka
     
  18. Karen Ashoka

    Karen Ashoka Pilot on the MCRN Atrax

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    Karen sat at the mess table as the two new crew members made their way in. She wore a playful smile on her face, and eyes Buck as he made his way over to the bench, a look of mild discomfort on his face. “That will hopefully be the only time we have to pull Gs like that,” she said, sliding a bulb of coffee over to him as he sat down, and one to Loz as she approached and also took a seat.

    Karen laid her hands palms up on the table top, “so, full disclosure, we are on our way to kill blues. I know neither of you have a problem with this or else you would not be here. What I want to know is why and how you were both assigned to the Atrax to begin with.”

    She took a sip of coffee and coffee and continued, “I am what you would call a short lifespan asset, the only reason I’m alive is because I honestly my flying skills killing other Martians, bandits in the northern reaches, before coming out here.

    So either you guys pissed someone off and they’re hoping you quickly stop becoming a problem for them,” she took another sip, before pulling a small bottle of what looked like bourbon from under the counter and tipping some in, she took another sip and nodded satisfactorily, “or you have something to prove and this is your fastest route to glory. So, what is it?”

    The galley was quiet besides the occasional crack and rumble of thunder from the Jovian atmosphere outside and the steady tick of the air recyclers.
     
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  19. Liz Ritter

    Liz Ritter Engineer on the MCRN Atrax

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    Liz took a gulp of coffee and furrowed her brow.

    “Well, I definitely didn't request this, so it must be the former,” she said. “Can't imagine who would want to get rid of me, though.”

    She looked at the other two, who avoided eye contact.

    “I got assigned to the Simurgh’s hangar two weeks ago, I guess with the purpose of sending me here. My captain recommended me for it. I was second engineer on a frigate before this, and we took a lot of damage too. I'm pretty damn good, if I say so. Maybe they sent me here to make that lifespan a little longer.”
     
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  20. Buck Bardsley

    Buck Bardsley MCRN Master Chief Petty Officer

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    The answer to this question was very simply for Buck, he didnt care. He suspected the first option but it might as well be the second one. He didnt know and didnt care. If Mars needed him to serve on a suicide mission he´d do it.

    He chugged down half the coffee and looked over to his crewmates. "Thats not really important. If CentCom says jump I ask how high. If they say i should serve on a cramped corvette were a single torpedo hit means certain death, I do it, its as simple as that."

    It wasnt like the man hated it to live, quite the opposite actually. But as much as he loved his own life, he loved Mars even more. Laying down his life for his beloved planet was something that came to him as naturally ass shitting.

    ...

    @Karen Ashoka @Liz Ritter
     
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