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Dr Archeville

Delivery at Pier 18 [IC]

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"As for 'when, where, and how': the Tuesday after next, at Pier 18. A large shipment, two big crates, will be arriving that night. I would appreciate some help in escorting them to my warehouse," he took out a piece of paper and pen and jotted down an address, "to make sure nothing happens to them. Word on the street is that someone may want to start charging me 'protection fees', and word is they plan to attack and destroy my shipments as proof of how dangerous a town this is." He chuckles a bit, then composes himself. "So there may be some firefighting involved. Think you would be up to that?"

"9:00pm. The boat will be here long before then, of course, but that is when I have arranged to have my two crates unloaded. I shall meet you there, and we shall each oversee one crate; your associate can shadow behind."

Time's going to be shifting around a bit for the first several posts as we all converge towards the Main Event. Geckoman and Quark are in one timeframe, High Note and Shadow Man in another, Tabitha in yet a third, at least for now. General time is late September; the shipment arrives on Sept 30th. I'm basing the weather and moon phases off those of Atlantic City, NJ (Why that city? Here's why ;) )


The week before the Big Event.

Geckoman, the Tuesday before (Sept 22nd)

While out "patrolling" one evening -- really more just a fun rooftop-run to clear his head after receiving a poor grade on a chemistry test -- Geckoman spotted several toughs coming out of an alleyway. Checking his utility belt, he noticed, with some dismay, that his Zappers were gone. The snaps normally holding them in place were torn, and he quickly realized they must have come loose when he dived through that collection of narrowly-spaced steam pipes. Still, he was not without some abilities, but he chose to tread cautiously, for now.

Crawling slowly down the wall to try and eavesdrop, he could just make out some talk about intercepting a shipment that was due in at Pier 18 sometime next Tuesday, and their plan to take it for themselves as part of a protection racket they were running in Riverside.

Quickly crawling back up, he decided to visit his friend Quark -- after backtracking and retrieving his Zappers -- and plan a little surprise for this group.

Quark, same evening

To say Darian's interests were eclectic would be a massive understatement. He was equally a home with bleeding-edge technology and the most esoteric of arcane mysteries, something which would task most men to madness. He was also, of course, a huge 'net-head, combing through the ether for whatever interesting tidbits he could use, both for his personal experiments and in his own attempts at showing his elders he could be a Responsible Hero.

One site he'd begun frequenting was http://www.oddjobs.com, a forum where folks could post "jobs of a transmundane nature." As with most sites catering to a certain niche of the public, the posters used their own lingo, but Quark had little trouble in deciphering it. One recent posting caught his eye, a report on behalf of a local businessman in Riverside. A group of thugs had set up a protection racket in his neighborhood, but he was expecting a valuable shipment in sometime next week. Anyone interested in helping the businessman was to look for a man, in a black suit with a red tie and yellow wooden shoes, in Riverside Park between noon and 1:00pm any day this week.

Almost immediately after reading the message, the buzzer from Quark's door sounded. It was Geckoman.


High Note, the Thursday before (Sept 24th)

Gordy St. James was enjoying a pleasant day out in Riverside Park: the sun was out, the temp as a pleasant 70, though the winds -- averaging 10mph but gusting up to 30mph at times -- made holding onto a newspaper (or sheet music) difficult at best. But, some of the other Claremont kids insisted on going out to frolic in the park, and Gordy was dragged along even though he really would've preferred staying in on a day like this.

While at the park, something interesting did catch his eye: a slender but fit man in his 30s, in a black business suit with a red tie and wooden shoes. The suit and tie were nothing special in themselves, but the wooden shoes were an oddity even in so fantastic a place as Freedom City. What's more, the man seemed to be looking about for someone, and seemed a few times to look towards Gordy and his schoolmates, as if... sizing them up?

Shadow Man, same time

Kurt Mannis was also at Riverside Park, but unlike Gordy was fully enjoying his time out. He and a few other Claremonters had been plying with a frisbee for a while, until a particularly strong gust snatched the disc away from them; now they were forming up an impromptu football match.

Every once in a while, though, he felt a shiver down his spine, one he could not completely attribute to the winds. Looking about, he noticed a slender but fit man in his 30s, in a black business suit with a red tie and... wooden shoes? And was he looking Kurt and the other Claremonters over? There was something a tad 'off' about this guy, though Kurt was at a loss as to what it could be.


Tabitha Connely, the Sunday before (Sept 27th [27 = 9+9+9 = 666 upside down; 2+7 = 9 = 1+8 = 18 = 6+6+6 :twisted: ])

Tabitha had her orders: she was to approach Mr. Terhune and offer her assistance in his little problem, but make no mention of whom she worked for. Which is why she was at Terhune's house/soon-to-be-shoppe at a few minutes past midnight, under a bare sliver of waning crescent moon (it'd be New in just two more nights), and knocking on his door. The whole upstairs was lit, and she could clearly see movement, but no answer seemed to be forthcoming.

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Tabitha Connely, outside Mr Terhune's home, midnight Sept 27th

Tabitha knocked on the door, her knocks growing louder as time passed, but to no avail. She frowned. She wanted to present a professional appearance, so attempting to force her way in was out of the question. She looked around for an answer.

First, let's try the obvious, and see if the door is open. Next, is there any sort of balcony upstairs? Tabitha will move around the building if needed to look for either a back door, or some means of entering the upstairs directly.

Also, she will have approached the house with her Lust power active.

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Quark, the Tuesday before (Sept 22nd)

Darian bookmarks the job to his Oddjobs list. He knows it won't get to the top of the list, but there is a chance and he wants to be one of the first on the list. Jumping out of the chair he grabs his robe and puts it on. Seeing as no one was supposed to be there tonight (his parents were out for the evening), he is only in his socks and Freedom League pajama bottoms. Quickly dashing to the door, he unlocks everything but the chain lock. "Hello, Chris," he greets his guest, "Give me a second and I will let you in," he says pointing to the chain. Less than a second later, the door is open. "Come in," he says invitingly, "What brings you here tonight?"

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Gordy was used to being stared at, though not while at the park with a group of friends. He found it unsettling. Trying to be nonchalant, Gordy checks to makes sure his quick mask is in his satchel. It was something he had learned from Mr. Summers. 'Even if they see you change, they likely didn't memorize your features first.' It was there, under a script for Company. Gordy steals another glance toward the man. He still seemed to be looking over in his direction, though not at Gordy himself. He seemed to be looking over at the footballers. Gordy, making sure the keep his back turned on the man so he would have a harder time hearing him, projected a question to the rest of the group. "Anybody else think that guy in the wooden shoes is looking at us?"

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Geckoman & Quark, the Tuesday before (Sept 22nd)

Darian bookmarks the job to his Oddjobs list. He knows it won't get to the top of the list, but there is a chance and he wants to be one of the first on the list. Jumping out of the chair he grabs his robe and puts it on. Seeing as no one was supposed to be there tonight (his parents were out for the evening), he is only in his socks and Freedom League pajama bottoms. Quickly dashing to the door, he unlocks everything but the chain lock. "Hello, Chris," he greets his guest, "Give me a second and I will let you in," he says pointing to the chain. Less than a second later, the door is open. "Come in," he says invitingly, "What brings you here tonight?"

"I need some help. I overheard this plot to steal a shipment arriving next week on Pier 18. Protection racket. Thing is, it looked like a group of guys when I overheard it, so I hoped you could bust out some of your fancy toys and help me stop it. I mean, I've barely done anything as a superhero, I shouldn't ignore this simply because I don't think I can do it alone..." He looked at Darian pleadingly. "Oh, and nice jammies."

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Tabitha Connely, outside Mr. Terhune's home, midnight Sept 27th

The door was locked and no answer seemed to be coming, and looking about, there was no sign of any balcony, at least not at the front of the house. Just as Tabitha turned and began to go around to seek some other means of entrance, she heard someone coming towards the door. It opened, revealing a red satin pajama-clad Mr. Terhune.

"Yes, yes, wha-" he started, appearing quite upset at being disturbed. His tone instantly changed as he saw whom his visitor was. "Oh... oh, my. May I help you, young lady?" While his tone was definitely a pleasant one, it seemed no moreso than what any man with an average libido would give to her.

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Tabitha Connely, Mr. Terhune's home, midnight Sept 27th

"Mr. Terhune, I presume?" She smiles as she walks past him into the house, not waiting for an invitation. "Forgive the late hour, but I understand you have a little... situation involving a shipment? I have come to offer my assistance."

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Geckoman & Quark, the Tuesday before (Sept 22nd)

Darian is shocked in two ways. First, it could not be a coincidence that he just read about a protection racket. Second, didn't expect a comment about his dresswear. "Well, you do not have to ask me twice," he says pulling his Quark Tech PDA and opening a portal, "Let me get prepared," he pauses, "and dressed." He closes the portal, "I will be back." Darian rushes off down the hall and up the stairs. A short time later he shows up back in the foyer wearing his regular outfit: slacks, long sleeved pullover shirt, and loafers. "Now I can get supplies," he says opening the portal again, "Do you wish to follow?"

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Geckoman & Quark, the Tuesday before (Sept 22nd)

"Yeah, might as well. I figured we'd go check out the pier right now and see if we can find anything out about this," said Geckoman, strapping his zappers firmly onto his wrists as he stepped into the portal, flicking the mechanism on over his fingers and putting his green gloves back on. "Don't have any duct tape handy, do you? I lost these earlier and want to keep them firmly attached tonight."

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Tabitha Connely & Jos Terhune, at Mr. Terhune's home, midnight Sept 27th

"I am Mr. Terhune, yes," he replied as he closed the door behind them, "and you are? Wait, wait, don't tell me, let me guess!" He paced back and forth for a few moments, looking her up and down. "Ah, I know, you're a hopeful up-and-coming superheroine, trying to make a name for herself, and you saw my lil' ad on oddjobs.com! So, what's your shtick? You got a costume under that trenchcoat, or is the trenchcoat your costume?"

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Tabitha Connely & Jos Terhune, at Mr. Terhune's home, midnight Sept 27th

"I am Mr. Terhune, yes," he replied as he closed the door behind them, "and you are? Wait, wait, don't tell me, let me guess!" He paced back and forth for a few moments, looking her up and down. "Ah, I know, you're a hopeful up-and-coming superheroine, trying to make a name for herself, and you saw my lil' ad on oddjobs.com! So, what's your shtick? You got a costume under that trenchcoat, or is the trenchcoat your costume?"

She smiles at the description of her as an 'up-and-coming superheroine'. "Yes, something like that."

"As for my attire, I had assumed you would prefer a bit of discretion at your home. I assure you I make more of an impression 'on the clock', as it were." She sits down on the edge of a nearby table, crossing her legs. "As for what I can do, well, for now it's easiest to say that I have a deeper understanding of humanity's baser instincts than most."

"I am hoping to make a name for myself, and I've learned that a lot depends on who you know. I was hoping that if everything goes well with this assignment, it might open the door to... future opportunities?" She extends a hand. "You may call me Lady Iniquity."

As she starts speaking to Mr. Terhune, Tabitha will end the Emotion Control portion of her Lust power, but the Enhanced Charisma and Attractive feat will stay active.

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The Ember Paw, Rooftop across Mr Terhune's home, midnight Sept 27th

Ember leaped from building to building, his new sensory sensors taking in the sights, sounds and smells of the area. Ember wanted to get the complete layout of the land before the coming Tuesday. As it was Ember had been out since sunset, following every possible rout from the docks to the store, making mental notes along the way for possible ambush locations.

It wasn't long before Ember made his way back to the shop, on yet another possible path they could take next Tuesday, Just as he was about to leave Ember notices someone at Mr. Terhune's door. staying on the food Ember lowered himself until his head only peaked slightly above the ridge of the nearby building, Both his ears ears honed in on the strange figure, His enhanced hearing giving him a 'fly on the wall' advantage to listen in on there conversation...

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Geckoman & Quark, the Tuesday before (Sept 22nd)

Darian nods and enters the portal. "We must be quick about this if we are to catch these thugs," he says hurriedly rushing to what looks like a workstation full of regular and irregular gadgets. He grabs a few of them and puts them in his messenger bag. Opening a drawer on the workstation, he tosses a roll of duct tape towards Chris, "Tell me, is this place we are going anywhere near Riverside Park," he questions his guest as he uses the PDA to open the portal again.

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Tabitha Connely & Jos Terhune, at Mr. Terhune's home, midnight Sept 27th

"A telepath?," he asked. "My, my, that would be incredibly useful, not just in assisting me with my current... situation, but in other endeavors. Oh, where are my manners: would you care for a drink? I was just about to pour myself a nightcap when you knocked."

Damn, what I would do to that! Oh, wait, she might be reading my thoughts....

Inside, the house looked like several small tornadoes had gone through it. From the 'foyer'/hallway in which she sat, Tabitha could see a very cluttered living room, where most of the contents had been shoved into piles along the sides. Peering down the hall, she could just make out a darkened kitchen, and could barely make out large piles of things in there.

"Oh, do forgive the mess: I moved in just last week, and I'm still doing some redecorating. I plan on turning this house into an antiques store, you see; this building sits right on the line between the commercial and residential districts, and has gone back and forth between being a home and a being store for decades. That's what my shipment is for, it contains some necessary items."

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Tabitha Connely & Jos Terhune, at Mr. Terhune's home, midnight Sept 27th

"A drink would be lovely, thank you," she says. "Whatever you're having will be fine."

"So, you deal in antiquities?" she asks. "Do you specialize in anything in particular?"

Perhaps this is why my master is interested in this one, she thinks to herself. Many occult objects could be classified as 'antiques'.

"I feel I should correct your perceptions on one matter, however," she says as Mr Terhune gets the drinks. "I am not a telepath, though I do have some influence over the thoughts and emotions of others. My abilities evoke humanity's darker urges, their proclivity toward sinfulness." She extends a hand, palm up, and after a moment's concentration a golden statuette appears in her hand, an exact likeness of Lady Iniquity in full costume (sans trenchcoat), about eight inches tall. "Greed, for example." She sets the statuette down. "I could show you more, but many of my other abilities are more personal in nature, and I don't believe that assaulting a prospective employer with powers makes a good first impression. Besides, a woman should have some secrets."

Obviously, she had to temporarily switch from Lust to Greed to pull that little demonstration off, but she'll switch back to Lust as soon as she can (will still keep the Emotion Control part switched off). The Greed power is Independent, so the statuette will remain even if she switches powers (until the duration expires, of course, in about 90 minutes).

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Geckoman & Quark, the Tuesday before (Sept 22nd)

Darian nods and enters the portal. "We must be quick about this if we are to catch these thugs," he says hurriedly rushing to what looks like a workstation full of regular and irregular gadgets. He grabs a few of them and puts them in his messenger bag. Opening a drawer on the workstation, he tosses a roll of duct tape towards Chris, "Tell me, is this place we are going anywhere near Riverside Park," he questions his guest as he uses the PDA to open the portal again.

"Yeah, I think so," said Geckoman, rolling tape tight around the straps, before tweaking the power setting to its lowest and shooting at the floor. "Yep, it works," he acknowledged, taking out his remote. "I'll get the Pitchoo to home in on us once we get there."

He looks at Darian. "Don't you have some sort of costume or gizmo you could wear to stand out?"

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Geckoman & Quark, the Tuesday before (Sept 22nd)

"Well, I guess I could," He pulls a small metal box out of his messenger bag. Opening the box reveals a baseball-sized sphere made of what looks like quicksilver. As soon as he drops the sphere in his hand and grasps it, it begins to coat his person with a layer of the quicksilver substance until he is no longer recognizable, just a silver humanoid figure. "Would this stand out enough," he questions Chris as he begins to float toward the exit portal.

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High Note & Shadow Man, the Thursday before (Sept 24th)

The Man in the Wooden Shoes continues looking over towards the assembled team of students, and now seems to have stopped looking around for anyone else.


Tabitha Connely & Jos Terhune (and a snoopy Ember), at Mr. Terhune's home, midnight Sept 27th

Jos brings out two brandy glasses and a bottle of spirits; the liquid was caramel coloured with just a tint of plum. "I do hope you like Plantiac brandy, ms... er, Lady Iniquity. It's one of the few items I brought with me on my flight over; a good deal of my other personal belongings are in the shipments." He poured two glasses, then held his glass up to her, "to your health."

And maybe later we'll see just how healthy you are...

"And, yes, I do deal in antiquities," he said, visibly lighting up. "No particular specializations, at least not yet. Well, no, I take that back: I have spent a larger than usual amount of study on Dutch artifacts, as I am fairly proud of and fascinated by my country's history. And of late I have developed a fascination in artifacts associated with the Abrahamic faiths, particularly Christianity." He paused and took a sip of brandy, "Those faiths, for better or worse, helped shape all of Western society, and I like knowing the history of things. And with all the strife going on in the Middle East, I thought it would be interesting to see if I can find something that could help explain some of the friction. And before you ask, no, I'm not in this for the money, not primarily at least: I actually have degrees in art history and archaeology, they all fascinate me on an intellectual level."

Terhune's eyes widen at the sight of the statuette.

Whoah! Is this gal a half-demon like me? I'd better be careful, I... damn, she's hot!

He took a gulp of brandy, his hands shaking just a bit. "Oh, my, my, my, that is an... interesting ability. And, er," he tore his gaze off the statuette and looked up to her, "I do appreciate you not assaulting me. Er, however," his gaze fell back to the statuette, "while I certainly appreciate a need for secrets, an employer should know a potential employee's abilities, and any... qualms she may have in using them. Are any of your abilities such that you could display them for me in, say, an open and largely uninhabited area? Say, a section of the Fens?"

This Lady ain't soundin' like a superhero to me, more like a supervillain. Wonder if she knows any others? Wonder how interested she'd be in a partnership?

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Gordy can't help but notice that the man is now not even pretending not to look over at him and his friends. He heaves a sigh, rolls his eyes and announces to the group at large, "I'll handle this." Gordy stands up and strides over to the man, confident with just a touch of annoyance. If the man was going to make Gordy uncomfortable, he'd return it in spades. "Like what you see?" Gordy asks loudly.

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Tabitha Connely & Jos Terhune (and a snoopy Ember), at Mr. Terhune's home, midnight Sept 27th

As the two began to walk further into the home, Ember sighed, 'doesn't anybody hold conversations at the front door anymore...' Ember thought to himself. Standing up, Ember decides to get a little closer, Moving Quietly Ember made his way to one of the side windows of the house. Staying low, Ember honed his ears onto the glass, being this close he shouldn't have a problem hearingthe conversation, Ember just hopes they don't notice him...

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Tabitha Connely & Jos Terhune (and a snoopy Ember), at Mr. Terhune's home, midnight Sept 27th

"I'm afraid, Mr. Terhune, that my powers mostly manifest against the minds of men and women, and so would be demonstrated poorly in an unpopulated area. My ability to make objects such as this golden idol is one of my few powers that have a physical presence. In brief, I can manifest powers that evoke the Seven Deadly Sins - a concept that I'm sure you you are familiar with as a purveyor of history. Obviously, the gold represents Greed - the other six are evoked through manipulations of the mind or body."

"If you feel a demonstration is necessary, we could try to arrange something. I'm sure a man of your position might be able to recruit a few volunteers to meet you in a private location somewhere?"

Tabitha pauses for a moment, thinking she heard something at the window, but realizes it was probably just a stray cat.

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Geckoman & Quark, the Tuesday before (Sept 22nd)

"Well, I guess I could," He pulls a small metal box out of his messenger bag. Opening the box reveals a baseball-sized sphere made of what looks like quicksilver. As soon as he drops the sphere in his hand and grasps it, it begins to coat his person with a layer of the quicksilver substance until he is no longer recognizable, just a silver humanoid figure. "Would this stand out enough," he questions Chris as he begins to float toward the exit portal.

"Needs a logo or something..." muttered Geckoman, following Darian into the portal So cool... "I'm guessing it's some kind of battlesuit?" he asked as they left Darian's home and headed towards the Pitchoo.

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High Note & Shadow Man, the Thursday before (Sept 24th)

Gordy stands up and strides over to the man, confident with just a touch of annoyance. If the man was going to make Gordy uncomfortable, he'd return it in spades. "Like what you see?" Gordy asks loudly.

"That remains to be seen, young man," he replied, fairly coolly and with a noticeable but not readily identifiable foreign accent. "Terhune is the name, Jos (Yos) Terhune. I am a local businessman who is in the unenviable position of having attracted some trouble. I had sent out some 'feelers' into the heroic community, hoping for some Good Samaritan to come to my aid. I left note indicating that I would be in this park, at this time every day this week, wearing this outfit, so that a prospective protector could meet me on neutral territory. When I saw you and your friends over there," he nodded towards the other Claremonters, "I thought I had seen a few of them look my way, as if checking to see if I matched the description I gave in my little 'want ad'. I do apologize if I was mistaken and inadvertently caused any discomfort."

Took you long enough to take the bait, he thought. Now let's see how much you'll nibble.


Tabitha Connely & Jos Terhune (and a snoopy Ember), at Mr. Terhune's home, midnight Sept 27th

"I do believe I could arrange for some... volunteers for a little demonstration. I could probably do so tonight, get something arranged in an hour or so, if such would not be an imposition on you."

Would it be an imposition?, he thought. Are you being legit with me, able to do all you say you can, or is this a trick of some sort?

Ember hears all, and appears to remain unseen.

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Geckoman & Quark, the Tuesday before (Sept 22nd)

"More like a battleskin," Darian nods, "To put it in simple terms: it is a psionically charged substance that works off my thoughts. It does not have to stay all over the whole body either," Darian pauses for a moment to land from his floating position. The substance uncovers him and begins to wrap around his forearms and hands, coalescing into what looks like large gauntlets made of clockwork and wires. "This is another setting. The original skin does something different than these," he moves the fingers of the mechanical glove around to his own amusement. "Oh yes, we have something to do," he exclaimed. The gauntlets disappear as they melt back into the quicksilver-like substance that covers him again. He quickly floats toward the Pitchoo.

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Tabitha Connely & Jos Terhune (and a snoopy Ember), at Mr. Terhune's home, midnight Sept 27th

Tabitha hands Mr Terhune a business card, with the name 'Lady Iniquity' and a phone number. She's glad she thought about this little detail ahead of time; she had to print the cards at home, so they're not quite as nice as she'd like, but they do the job. The phone, of course, is a generic prepaid cell, paid for with cash and untraceable to her civilian identity. "Call me with a location when you're ready," she says, standing up and heading for the door. "I'm sure you'll find I'm worth the wait."

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