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D&D General How Was Your Last Session?

Immoralkickass

Explorer
My last session was an epic battle against a huge black dragon and its minions. While fighting the minions, on a platform built on a swamp, the dragon appeared from the water, breathed on us and flew 50ft into the air. A few failed spells later, my Command manage to stick on the dragon, and it was forced to land. The DM later hinted that it could have Legendary Resist it but chose not to. Big mistake.

Our resident GWM Vengeance Paladin was up next. He Vow of Enmity + GWM attack. Critical hit. Level 3 smite was added. Big damage. 2nd attack hit as well. That took a large chunk of its HP.

Immediately after, my DM soon realise his mistake. Our GWM homeboy was famous for rolling crits when we need it the most. So he made the Dragon take a legendary action to Wing buffet, knock the paladin prone and fly away. Another big mistake. Our GWM boy made his Opportunity Attack while prone, but his disadv was canceled out by Vow of Enmity. Natural 20. Another level 3 smite. A few small attacks later, the dragon is down.
 

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Azzy

KMF DM
Closing in on the final session of this campaign (this may have been the penultimate session). Successfully switched over to Foundry VTT (I will shill for that program) and things went a lot smoother. I wish I had discovered it when I had started my campaign (oh well, there's always another campaign to run).

Getting the PCs to learn of the location of the Lair of the White Wyrm (or young dragon, rather) went easier than expected. The PCs made their way to Icespire hold with only a "random" encounter with an owlbear to help them learn the ins and outs of Foundry. Next session will likely have them fight Cryovain, the young white dragon. Considering that they're above level for this fight, I've beefed up Cryovain by way of Dave2008 to something that I hope won't be an anticlimatic battle. Fingers crossed.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
Played a session tonight - someone in the area is calling up aberrations, and we are expected to try to stop them. While this may be a foolish task for 1st level characters, we are trying it anyway...

Following the trail of what we hope are the bad guys, the party found their way into a dungeon complex remaining in some ruins of a past settlement, with significant magics concealing the whole thing. And we began exploring. Begin dungeon crawl...

The place is tough. A couple of the encounters have been quite able to down a PC on a single hit, which has been worrisome. But we talked our way past one, and managed to beat our way through another, with only one PC going down, but with enough healing in the party to get them standing again afterwards. It'll be an interesting exercise in resource management.
 

billd91

Hobbit on Quest
Closed in on the end of Chapter 4 - The Hall of Harsh Reflections of Age of Worms. The characters killed Zyrxog. They encountered him from his scrying pool chamber and the balcony overlooking his Cathedral of the Mind. Minah the minstrel enshrouded him in a stinking cloud as Fergus the smith jumped the 40-odd feet down into the chamber from the balcony. Zyrxog used his levitation to come out over the top of the stinking cloud so he could clear his lungs and throat, about 70 feet above the floor of the chamber. That's when Locwyn the priest hit him with a blight that ended up breaking his concentration. Zyrxog fell, back through the stinking cloud, 70 feet where Fergus was happy to go meet him.

A bit more exploration next session and some wrangling and we'll move on to the Champion's Belt.
 

ccs

41st lv DM
Deadly. Two (of three) PCs died. Both to random encounters - before reaching the "adventure site".
And it was the players own fault.

I'm running a 5e version of Ravenloft II: House on Gryphon Hill.
In this adventure the alchemist Strahd has built a mad science device & has been experimenting with separating the good/evil from mens souls.... Yeah, it hasn't gone well. :)
As with the original, the party treks about searching for several items/clues/info & then solves the problem.
They've accomplished several of the steps. All clues keep pointing them to the abandonned House on Gryphon Hill. They (rightfully) assume it's haunted. They'd like to attack it during the day....
But during the day they keep running about the town/countryside etc as they try & coral body/soulswapped villagers/monsters and trying to solve the problem in various other means (all destined to fail because there comes a point where villains must be confronted).

Now this adventure has a progression track where, over several days/nights more & more villagers are turned into monsters, the plot thickens, and the problem generally worsens. You're supposed to solve it before the end of the track....
The players have noticed things are getting harder & harder. And more dangerous.

This past session, day 4/5, saw them run into some tough opposition around lunchtime, resulting in them taking a long rest.
Then, that evening, full of HP & spells they FINALLY head out to Gryphon Hill....
And they tell me a most perplexing plan. They intend to dwadle along all night long & arrive in the morning. When the sun is up.
What???
So the PLAN is to spend as long as humanly possible walking down the haunted roads - because you don't want to face a haunted house at night. ??? ....
{I'm thinking to myself: why not stay holed up in town, leave at breakfast time, & make haste?}
Now like with many 1e modules it provides a wandering monster chart(s) and instructions on how often to roll on them. They generally presume a normal rate of travel.
I HAD been planning on reducing the # of checks on the assumption the PCs were making haste towards Gryphon Hill.
Not any more. Now the # of checks just went waaay up. At least triple as they're intending to spend 8+ hours covering about 1/2 as many miles.
En-route they meet a banshee - who damned near kills two of them.
A wraith - who succeeds in killing the elf paladin.
At this point the other two decide to turn around and make haste back to the village priest - in hopes of rezzing the paladin. Even making haste this trek will take considerable time.
So I reduce the # of checks down to my make haste plan.
Within sight of the town they run into a bodak. Wich kills the wizard.

And so, as the sun rises weakly on the dawn of the 5th day, our Fighter/warlock hauling two dead companions bangs on the door of the town priest.

I think Mordentshire is doomed.
 

turnip_farmer

Adventurer
A bit dull. I'm sitting on the other side of the screen for once, and I kind of get the feeling this train's going where it's going regardless of what I say or do.

Seems to be a lot of pointless dice rolling as well. We all get told to make an Investigation roll, we all roll crap. DM umms and ahs then tells someone to roll a Nature check instead.

Just tell us the clue if you really want us to see it. Don't just make us roll dice over and over until someone gets higher than 15.

Oh well, it's only supposed to be a short campaign.
 

Closed in on the end of Chapter 4 - The Hall of Harsh Reflections of Age of Worms. The characters killed Zyrxog. They encountered him from his scrying pool chamber and the balcony overlooking his Cathedral of the Mind. Minah the minstrel enshrouded him in a stinking cloud as Fergus the smith jumped the 40-odd feet down into the chamber from the balcony. Zyrxog used his levitation to come out over the top of the stinking cloud so he could clear his lungs and throat, about 70 feet above the floor of the chamber. That's when Locwyn the priest hit him with a blight that ended up breaking his concentration. Zyrxog fell, back through the stinking cloud, 70 feet where Fergus was happy to go meet him.

A bit more exploration next session and some wrangling and we'll move on to the Champion's Belt.
I really like that adventure...although I've never had the chance to play it.
 

It was good. We're playing Dwellers of the Forbidden City in 5e. The party, with some shepherding, managed to make an alliance of convenience with the mongrelmen, who dislike living under the cruel hand of the Yuan-Ti.

We just upgraded to FG Unity, and it is a little less terrible than FG. I do not understand why item bonuses do not work without a 3rd-party extension. 5e games are half of their total customers, so it's crazy that something like a Ring of Protection doesn't automatically adjust defenses by 1. So now I'm trying to figure out why I can't seem to get a 3rd-party extension to do this when it seems like a pretty basic feature.
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
Seems to be a lot of pointless dice rolling as well. We all get told to make an Investigation roll, we all roll crap. DM umms and ahs then tells someone to roll a Nature check instead.

Just tell us the clue if you really want us to see it. Don't just make us roll dice over and over until someone gets higher than 15.
I hate that. A check that is needed to be able to advance the plot should always fail forward. Sorry, you didn't find the tracks to bring you to the enemy encampment to find out they are dark elf forces? Okay, then instead while searching you get ambushed by dark elves from the encampment. Poof, exposition in "roll for initiative" form.
 

Enrico Poli1

Adventurer
Today in my Tomb of Annihilation campaign, after an incredible 19-days (in-game) speedrun, the party descended into the deepest level of the Tomb. They had already found all the skeleton keys, all the trickster spirits, all the legendary treasures of the Tomb.
There were no PC deaths in the campaign (they are using a tribe of kobolds to discover and disable traps); rather the Tiefling Bard that leads the party recruited a number of NPCs to join the adventure. The Bard is incredible, often doing the right thing at the right time, and very lucky too. I'm really, really impressed by the Bard player (that happens to be my sister).
 

ccs

41st lv DM
Today in my Tomb of Annihilation campaign, after an incredible 19-days (in-game) speedrun, the party descended into the deepest level of the Tomb. They had already found all the skeleton keys, all the trickster spirits, all the legendary treasures of the Tomb.
There were no PC deaths in the campaign (they are using a tribe of kobolds to discover and disable traps); rather the Tiefling Bard that leads the party recruited a number of NPCs to join the adventure. The Bard is incredible, often doing the right thing at the right time, and very lucky too. I'm really, really impressed by the Bard player (that happens to be my sister).
You sure she's not operating under a Precognition effect? AKA: having read the module?
 

el-remmen

Moderator Emeritus
We left off last time with the druid in scrappy little dog form (he purposefully chose an unintimidating form) coming face to face with a singing troll! The troll roared and jumped forward as if he was gonna attack, but the druid's instinct told him the troll was just trying to spook the dog and get it to go away. So he did a play bow and wagged his tail. The troll laughed! It shared the tarts the girl had left in the basket and then shooed the dog-druid off for good, talking to it in a language the druid did not understand - gently pushing the dog away and pointing back to town. Taking up his song, he got back in his boat and poled away around the stream bend.

Meanwhile, the rest of the party was back at the inn noticing some unwanted attention for their pitched battle with the constable and deputies earlier that same day. Thron (the druid) returned and informed the others about the troll, but when they tried to tell the girl about this, it did not go well and she refused to believe it. She did not seem to take seriously their warning that her next trip to the fens could be her last. Alston the gnome bard/wizard tried to explain that trolls are "evil" and "dig up gnome burrows and eat gnome babies" but had to admit he had never met one). Later they'd inform her father and he decided to lock her in her room until the knight she is supposed to marry (by arrangement) arrives to take her away. Nora (the tiefling ranger) suggested that not being so overly controlling would be a better way to get his daughter to listen but the innkeep seemed equally stubborn. Apples and trees and all that. Oh and unrelated to this, he kicks out the party saying their bad rep after killing the constable and deputies was "bad for business" and now word had arrived that their companion Rollo had been causing a ruckus in town overnight. He said it was nothing personal and that he appreciated their looking out for his daughter.

The last they saw the barbarian he was hanging out with some folks at an inn back in town, smoking "sparkleweed" and drinking. The party left him, but this might not have been a good idea. Thinking he could learn more about what was going on, he accepted the Loafers' invitation to get some of "the good stuff" and the source of the drugs, bringing him to a secret room in the basement where weird mushrooms were growing on some musty dung. They offered him some and he ate it. Oops.

Suddenly, he was beset by men with cudgels and the innkeep, telling him to give in and just "become one with the LOAF." He gave a good fight and almost got away, defeating five men and forcing the young woman to flee (and he was poisoned the whole time). Fearing they were not in their right minds he fought to subdue (killing only the innkeeper). Unfortunately, in the midst of locking up the inn and starting to search it, the mushrooms kicked in, and just as the shadow people with the googly eyes led him to the shining gold and green jungle of living music he fell on the ground. As things grew dark, he saw someone tall standing over him. All was black.

In the morning, the rest of the party went looking for their friend. After roughing up the now conscious loafers they came to realize (with the help of a detect thoughts and identify spell) that these people were under some kind of domination and their inner world was inaccessible except for a mantra "I am in the LOAF. I am of the LOAF. I am HER will. I am her hands. I am her eyes. I am HER and SHE is me and we are in the LOAF." They seemed to have no memory of assaulting Rollo and one of them, when driven to edge, threw himself out the window rather than fight or give in to answering a question straight.

Thron then rode around the town with a locate object spell going and discovered Rollo's great axe was in a barn in a farm on the other side of the village. The party rode over there and after a confrontation with the family that lived there (a middle-aged woman and her two adult sons), they found Rollo in a hidey hole under a false floor in the barn. Still coming off the effects of the mushrooms, he had not had a long rest.

They hurried back across town and took a short rest in the barn of the Windfellow Family. In their first adventure they rescued Erilyn Windfellow, so they remain grateful. Erilyn has been investigating the disappearances on her own (like a D&D Nancy Drew) but they convinced her to go keep her friend from seeking out a troll in a haunted swamp for now and leave the investigation to them. Alston got her to lend him her now dead ex-boyfriend's spellbook - his imp killed him in a jealous rage). After that, they decided to go investigate the temple at the northeastern part of town. On the way they met a woman whose son was missing and on her recommendation they went to see the old nebby woman who lives near the center of town and she gave them a bunch of good information. Including stuff that reinforced why checking out the temple might be a good idea (though she seemed to have a complaint about anything that came up).

We left the session with the PCs outside the temple gates.
 
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ericstephen

Villager
Awesome! Sounds like a fun fight to run and watch. Was the degree of difficulty in taking down the barbarian what allowed the other players to find him "relatively" easily the next day?
 

el-remmen

Moderator Emeritus
Awesome! Sounds like a fun fight to run and watch. Was the degree of difficulty in taking down the barbarian what allowed the other players to find him "relatively" easily the next day?
It was just a quick and easy place to stash him until he could be taken to the place where the forcible conversions happen. Who figured he'd be hidden on some random farm? The cultists (and me as DM ;)) did not consider that locate object could be used to find a piece of his gear which led to him. They did not have him well-guarded because that was more conspicuous! Oops!
 

darjr

I crit!
Pretty good. I got to play a Giff, and a travelling merchant. I ran a bunch of kobolds and their very unique trap, lovely really. I also officated a sort of dance off with deep magic rituals and a non-caster casting wild spells. Fun!
 

I got to play 3 out the last 4 days, (all different campaigns)

One highlight involved our characters finding this small island at sea. We jumped off the boat and started looking around, found and a small tomb which ended up teleporting us to the Feywild.

After a couple of sessions of adventure there we were sent back, being told that time works differently and there was no guarantee as to when we would come out. Our biggest fear that the boat we were on would have already left.

When we came out of the Feywild the boat was nowhere to be seen, but there were also no footprints in the sand. An hour or so latter we see our boat coming towards the island with our past selves on it. We'd come out before we went in, so we hid in the bushes and watched ourselves disappear through the portal all over again. There was some OOC talk of following ourselves back into the Feywild, but the DM refused to recount the events of the previous 2 sessions with us hiding in the bushes the whole time like it was Back to the Future 2 or something. :giggle:
 

jasper

Rotten DM
Friday night was fun and I had fun poking fun at the so call smart guy. We got tricked by Loki and sent back in time to way before foundation of Waterdeep. We meet Smart guys future leader and boss, and big time villain who is currently good guy. Smart guy starts dropping things about the future and talking trash to his boss. We had to do a rewind and the dm said to smart guy you didn't say that.
Saturday. Icewind dale. I have not told my players nothing is going to happen about the Hauntings from Chapter 6. For Chapter 7 I had them roll a d6 in the phone chat early in the week. This is their blight save reduction. I have not told them about the blight or the purpose of the roll. Just put on their character sheets and on my dm cheat sheet. We did get to chapter 7. And the ice cream was a hit.
 

My friend just started a 5e al-Qadim campaign, and since he has lived in the Middle East, visited Saudi Arabia, and has family Iran, he's clearly enjoying schooling the rest of the players on the customs and cultures that the setting was inspired by.

But that doesn't mean it isn't still a goofy D&D game. We were brought together to take a 'trial' to see how we could best serve a council of eight powerful individuals, and the trial is opaque and weird. We're in a small fighting pit - maybe 70 feet across, twenty feet deep, surrounded by bleachers. It's the four PCs and a random goblin who won't talk to us, and is just pacing impatiently. A small crowd sits in the bleachers, along with the council of eight. The GM has us make a few checks to see what we know about them, and I fail them all, so I am oblivious.

There's a table with adventuring supplies and a chest of envelopes.

An old dude stands up from among the council of eight and tells us to open one of the envelopes. We pick one at random, and inside is the instruction, "Determine the contents of these six pies without breaking the crust." They bring out six pies, and we fumble about with that one, doing a lot of sniffing, which isn't the most heroic display of prowess.

Then we're told to open the next envelope. It reads, "Ring the bell in the tower nearby as quickly as possible, taking as few steps as possible." Well, one of our PCs is a tiefling with wings, so that bodes well for us.

On to a third random envelope. "Kill the goblin as quickly as possible."

The goblin yells enthusiastically, then pulls out a club and a knife. The rest of the party get their weapons. I try to stand in the middle between everyone and stop the violence, because I assume this is a test of our morals. Obviously we aren't supposed to kill the little guy.

The goblin bonks me on the head with a club.

I whine in pain and run off, while the rest of the party focuses on the goblin. Instead, I run over to beneath the spot in the bleachers where the eight people are watching, and I shout up at the old dude to call this off before someone dies, or else! He smiles and laughs a little, but then turns his attention to the ongoing fight.

Remember, I have no idea that the people telling us to do these things are actually the eight members of the council we serve. I have no idea that the old dude directing us is the most powerful wizard in the land. So it made sense to me that casting puppet (Puppet (UA) - DND 5th Edition) to make the guy hop into the pit might be enough of a threat to him that he'd stop the fight.

So yo, in 5e, high-level wizards can still fail DC 12 Con saves. But when he hits the ground, instead of being worried, he laughs in glee, draws a knife, and starts chasing me.

He doesn't cast a single spell the whole fight, and eventually, after the party deals with the goblin, we take down the wizard too in a nasty brawl. Only afterward do I realize I aggroed basically Gandalf.
 

21st session of my Dragon Heist/Deck of Many Things mashup. Three PCs at 5th level. Half-orc fighter, half-elf wizard, halfling rogue. Short two hour online session.

The PCs arrived at Thornhold, a coastal fortress north of Waterdeep, via boat. The fortress is held by the nefarious Lord Margaster. Previously, the PCs had slain one of Margaster's adult children. Margaster was travelling from Waterdeep to Thornhold to use a magical artifact kept there to resurrect his daughter. The PCs were trying to get to Thornhold first and steal the artifact so that the people they kill stay dead.

Guards on Thornhold's parapets had a commanding view of the ocean, but fog gave the PCs a chance to sneak in undetected. The PCs covered themselves with Dust of Disappearance. They then ditched their boat and swam into the sea caves on the cliffs below Thornhold. The rogue and wizard blew their Athletics checks, but the fighter managed to save them.

The sea caves led to a dungeon below the castle guarded by orcs of the Blackclaw tribe. These orcs were mercenaries that had helped the Margasters seize Thornhold from its previous owners. Using stealth, the PCs picked off about half a dozen orcs.

The rogue became intrigued by a set of vault-like doors. Picking the locks, he discovered the orc's treasure hoard. In the center of the hoard was a stone pedestal holding an enchanted double axe -- a perfect weapon for the orc fighter. The fighter grabbed the axe. And that's when everything went wrong. The doors locked themselves shut. Sea water began to pour into the room. And the stone pedestal turned out to be a mimic.

The fight that followed was probably the best battle I've had with a mimic. The outcome was never really in doubt, but the mimic got in some good hits, and the scene felt exciting and evocative. Yet even as the mimic died, the water continued to rise...

Next session: Glub glub glub!
 
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121st session. Five players running seven 20th level PCs with six epic boons each. Plus an ancient silver dragon. And, by the end of the session, an archdevil.

This was the second-to-last session in the campaign but I think it will prove to be the emotional climax. It was exciting, unexpected, and moving. Really fantastic stuff.

Tiamat has escaped from Hell with the aid of Glasya, ruler of the sixth layer of Hell. Together, they slew Bahamut. Tiamat absorbed his divine powers and portfolio. Tiamat is now attempting to conquer the heaven of Celestia while her legions are engaged in pitched battle with the gods of good, including Corellon and Moradin. Glasya sits on Bahamut's throne in the ruins of his palace. In her hand she holds the severed head of Ilmater, god of suffering and patron of the PC vengeance paladin.

Glasya had tried to recruit the PCs into her scheme to backstab Tiamat and become a god herself, but they were having none of it. Glasya is the mother of the PC tiefling shadow sorcerer. She also once held captive the soul of the PC halfling lore bard. And she still holds the soul of the half-elf whispers bard, who started as a villainous NPC but evolved into a PC controlled by the same player who runs the halfling bard.

The whispers bard has become the ruler of Avernus, the first layer of Hell. In theory, that means he should have command of the devil legions ravaging Celestia. But since his soul belongs to Glasya, the legions are actually under her control.

Last session, the PCs attacked Glasya. She turned the whispers bard against them. But the lore bard used Feeblemind to take the whispers bard out of the fight. Glasya and four pit fiends battled the PCs along with a horde of minion devils. I found the battle to be a bit of a grind. I was underwhelmed by what Glasya could do -- I used the stat block for Zariel and her DPR is surprisingly low. So prior to the start of this session I crafted a "phase two" of the fight. A new wave of devils and a retooled Glasya who hit harder and had dirtier tricks.

At this power level you can't really play fair if you want to challenge the PCs.

Phase two began with Glasya giving the PCs one last chance to surrender. They refused, naturally. She summoned more devils to descend upon the PCs. Then she used the head of Ilmater to heal up to full strength...and to break the spell on the whispers bard. Glasya attacked the PC human beast master ranger. She dropped him to zero hit points, then hit him again for two failed death saving throws. From his body she claimed the Sword of Io -- the mythical blade that created Tiamat and Bahamut, was used to slay Bahamut, and could be used to destroy Tiamat. There were two shards from the blade needed to bring it back to full power...which were held by the paladin.

This is where things got interesting.

The PCs quickly realized they were in trouble and needed to change their tactics. The paladin charged forward, smiting Glasya for nearly 200 hit points. The sorcerer used Telekinesis to wrest the head of Ilmater from Glasya. Then the PC elf arcane trickster rogue healed the ranger. The ranger stood up and wrenched the Sword of Io from Glasya's grasp.

Meanwhile, the lore bard cast Wish in an attempt to reclaim the whisper bard's soul from Glasya. I told him he had to make an opposed Arcana or Religion check, in addition to the Wish spell. He rolled...and failed. He spent Inspiration to reroll. And failed again. The player started scouring his character sheet trying to find one more bonus. "What about my epic Boon of Fate?" asked the player. It let him add d10 to another character's skill check. I offered him a devil's bargain -- use the Boon of Fate to aid himself but lose it forever after, win or lose. He took the bargain...rolled the d10...and finally overcame Glasya's skill check.

The whispers bard then brought out his lyre, a magical instrument used to trap souls that had been created by Glasya. Earlier in the campaign, the lyre had held the soul of the whispers bard, and then later the soul of the lore bard. Using this instrument to entrap Glasya's soul would be delicious irony. I offered him another devil's bargain -- he could entrap Glasya's soul, but the lyre would forever lose its power. And so would another magical item he possessed. And he would have to give the soul to the PC sorcerer. He agreed.

At this point, the players had held off Glasya's best effort. I wasn't particularly interested in having them kill her here in Celestia, then going to Hell to kill her yet again. This felt like an earned moment where this plot line could be resolved in a dramatically satisfying way. From here on out, I handed narrative control over to the players. Together, we discussed and agreed to everything that follows.

With Glasya's soul in the sorcerer's possession, she was now the ruler of the sixth layer of Hell. That player decided Glasya would be more use alive than dead -- an ally in the upcoming fight against Tiamat.

The paladin wanted to resurrect Ilmater. Ilmater not only relieves the pain of others, but feels each and every bit of pain that he relieves. It's not easy to be the god of suffering. The powers of Ilmater flowed into the paladin as he took on the god's burden. Ilmater, finally free of pain, was granted peaceful, eternal rest. The paladin is now the new god of suffering.

In the spot where Ilmater was laid to rest a crystal monolith emerged. The ruins of Bahamut's Palace sunk into the earth and the land was renewed and replenished. This is now the holiest site of the god of suffering. All PCs were granted the benefits of a long rest.

Moradin, dwarven god of the forge, arrived. Aided by a pair of lesser gods, he finished forging the Sword of Io. Now it can be used to permanently kill Tiamat...and perhaps bring back the original god of dragons, Io. Moradin passed the blade to the ranger.

Together, the PCs began to ascend Mount Celestia, where Tiamat is locked in battle with the forces of good, and where their final fate awaits.

Next session: The end!
 
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