Mischief Makers Day 18: Snowballs

“We were scared almost to death!” said Lil, glaring at Glitter. “I didn’t even know there were garden gnomes, let alone that they were your friends!”

Glitter laughed and snorted.

“I still say it was a dirty trick.” Nim scowled at Glitter.

Glitter just laughed harder. “Oh Nim, you should have seen your faces!”

After being terrified and nearly roasted alive over a small gnomish fire, the elves screamed as Glitter galloped out to the garden laughing so hard she brayed and called the gnomes off. Apparently, she had orchestrated the whole thing.

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Figgy and Pixie giggled.

“What are you two laughing about. You were just as terrified as we were,” said Nim.

But Figgy and Pixie were not laughing about the gnomes. They were slowly preparing for the night’s mischief.

“What are you two doing over there?” asked Lil, finally noticing their secretive movements.

“Us? We aren’t doing anything,” said Pixie with wide, innocent eyes.

Slowly, Nim, Lil and Glitter approached.

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“Oh. My. Goodness. What on earth did you do to Barrel?!” Lil exclaimed.

Barrel was completely covered in toilet paper with only his eyes, nose and tail free from the white wrapping. As the original trio gaped in surprise at the little dog, a cotton ball sailed toward them and hit Glitter on the antlers.

Then, chaos erupted.

“Snowball fight!” yelled Figgy and Pixie.

By the time the elves and Glitter were done, the entire living room, kitchen and hallway were covered with cotton snowballs, Barrel had escaped and Nim, Lil, Pixie and Figgy were tangled in tinsel.

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Glitter was breathless with laughter…until they heard the sound of shuffling steps and soft sighs.

They’re up! Everybody freeze!”

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Mischief Makers Day 17: Gnomes at Home

“Very good job team,” said Santa as he smiled down at the four elves.

“Thank you sir, Mr. Santa.” Pixie had not quite gotten used to the big guy yet.

“I’m glad to see you two getting along again.”

Nim and Lil turned pink, embarrassed by their behavior over the past weeks.

“Yes Santa,” said Lil. “We’ve worked it out.”

Nim nodded.

“Good, because I have some important news that affects you all.”

Santa’s suddenly serious tone worried the group. Was something wrong?

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“As you know,” Santa began. “Joe is 8 in just a few days.”

“Is that all?” asked Nim with relief. “Yes, and we have such a fun day planned!”

“Yes, yes. That’s very good, but that is not all.” Santa spoke in a voice he used only for the most grave Elf Mishaps.

“I-it’s not?” Lil reached for Nim’s hand.

“I’m afraid that we must plan for the inevitable. This may very well be the last year Joe believes in the magic.”

Nim and Lil looked at each other in shock.

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“It’s true,” said Pixie. “I heard him when I came out for Jake’s birthday in October. He was asking questions about elves, hobbits and even…the Tooth Fairy.”

“But, he knows us. He sees what we do each night,” said Nim.

“Sometimes, even the clearest vision gets clouded with doubt,” said Santa sadly. “I’m afraid Joe is growing up and will very soon have no time for Santa and his elves.”

The group fell silent.

***

As the four friends flew back to the house, Lil couldn’t help but feel a heavy weight in her heart. What would happen to them when Joe stopped believing?

“INCOMING!!!!” Figgy dive bombed toward the window and missed, skidding to a halt in the snow covered garden bed.

“Ooops.”

“It’s locked,” said Lil in surprise.

“Locked? How can it be locked?” asked Pixie.

All four elves gathered on the window sill and tried in turn to open it, but it was shut tight.

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“I don’t believe it. They never lock this window,” said Nim.

“Maybe Glitter will let us in. Do you see her anywhere?” Figgy peeked inside, searching, but Glitter was nowhere to be found.

“Now what do we do?”

“Yeh could come ‘n join us by da fire,” said a gruff voice from the garden.

Startled, the elves turned as one. A gnome was standing at the edge of the garden staring at them.

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I didn’t know those gnomes were real!” Nim whispered excitedly.

“A fire does sound nice,” said Pixie, the first to recover from the shock of a talking statue.

“And I am a little chilly,” added Figgy.

Nim glanced at Lil who shrugged. They all followed the gnome.

When they reached the small hut in the garden, they found a crowd of gnomes huddled around a fire.

“Ah, Phil. Yer back with dinner.”

The elves glanced at Phil. He didn’t have any food in his hands.

It was then that they noticed all the gnomes slowly surrounding them.

“Uh oh,” said Pixie.

“Charge!” cried the horde of gnomes.

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TO BE CONTINUED…

Mischief Makers Day 16: Sizzling Snowmen

Nim and Lil, what a thrill
won the prize again!
Pixie, Figgy gave their all
but scored only 9 of 10!
Hey!

Figgy and Pixie laughed good naturedly. They were too happy that everyone was getting along and Nim and Lil were friends once again to be too sore at coming in second in the SugarRush competition.

“To be fair,” said Glitter. “It was a tie until the boys’ mom voted.”

Lil and Nim smiled.

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“What are we doing tonight?” asked Figgy.

“A science experiment,” said Lil.

“Oh no,” said Nim. “We aren’t going to try and make slime again are we?”

“Slime?” asked Figgy.

“That sounds interesting. And fun,” said Pixie.

“No way. I think we would definitely be suspended if we did that again.”

The last time Lil and Nim attempted to make slime, they made a fantastic mess of the kitchen counters, floor, cabinets and stove.

“This time we’ll try something less messy,” said Lil.

“Or, at least easier to clean up,” said Pixie.

“Yep, we are going to set up an experiment for the boys to make their very own snowman…indoors.”

“No,” said Glitter firmly. “Absolutely not. When they melt, and they will, the floors will be ruined, the parents will be angry and we will all be in big trouble.”

“But–”.

“I said NO.” Glitter stomped her hoof.

“They won’t be made of snow, Glitter,” said Lil.

“Then what—”.

“Baking soda.”

“Oh.” Glitter relaxed. “Well then, I suppose that’s–”.

“And vinegar. I call them ‘Sizzling Snowmen’.”

Glitter sighed, snorted and stomped away.

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Recipe for Sizzling Snowmen

  • Small plastic cups
  • Baking soda
  • Vinegar
  • Water
  • Black beads
  • Orange foam paper
  • Basters, eye droppers, or spoons

Optional but super fun

  • Glitter and sequins
  • Food coloring

Slowly add water to a cup or so of baking soda until you get a crumbly but pack-able dough.

Place two beads and an orange triangle nose in the bottom of the cup.

Add some of the mixture. Then place some sequins and glitter on top and cover with more mixture and glitter.

Place in the freezer overnight.

Run hot water around the outside of the cups. This will loosen the snowmen and they will slide out more easily.

Set out your snowman baking soda science activity with a baster and a bowl of vinegar.  Make sure to put them on a tray or dish that will hold the liquid.

For more fun, add a drop or two of blue food coloring to the vinegar. Drip drop the vinagar onto your snowmen and watch them sizzle!

What’s the science?

The chemical reaction that occurs between the baking soda (base) and the vinegar (acid) produces carbon dioxide.

(Experiment from Little Bins for Little Hands – http://www.littlebinsforlittlehands.com)

Mischief Makers Day 15: Sugar Cookie Showdown

“Did you get it all?” Nim hovered over the garbage can, now full of all the sugar-free snacks, syrups and sodas found in the house.

“I think so,” said Lil dumping another box of sugar-free sugar in the trash.

“And I’ve stacked the last sack of real sugar on the counter,” said Figgy. “We are ready for SugarRush!”

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Two recipes lay on the counter. One the boys’ great grandmother’s famous molasses cookies. The other, Nim and Lil’s Super Secret Sugar Cookie recipe.

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“Team One will be making Sugar Cookies while Team Two tackles the molasses,” said Glitter. Her gaze traveled from Pixie and Figgy to Nim and Lil. “Teams?”

Lil looked down at her toes while Nim shuffled his feet.

Figgy and Pixie looked at each other and smiled. They knew exactly what Nim and Lil were thinking.

Figgy nudged Pixie. “You know, I’d love to make the molasses cookies.”

“Oh, me too!” said Pixie with a grin.

“I guess that leaves you and me on the sugar cookies, Nim” said Lil, scuffing her foot on the table.

Nim smiled. “I guess so.”

And just like that, Nim and Lil were partners in mischief once again.

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Mischief Makers Day 14: Gingerbread House

All houses made of candy,
come in very handy.
When you get a craving,
just take a little shaving.
Oh!!! Gum drop doors,
fruity floors,
Sugar-coated walls.
Twizzlers hanging from the roof
fruit leathers down the halls!

Pixie giggled as she watched Nim and Lil. “You know, it’s not actually made of candy. Or gingerbread for that matter.”

“And those are not actually the lyrics for Jingle Bells,” said Figgy with a smile.

Nim smiled and pulled out a few more slices of bread. Lil came fluttering to the table with a container of ginger.

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“No, but this one will be.” Pixie came around the corner of the fridge with a giant gingerbread house kit. Glitter galloped after her with bags of candy in her antlers, and Barrel trailed behind with gumdrops stuck in his fur.

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“Looks like Barrel got into the gumdrop bag,” Figgy said as he scratched the pup’s ears.

“Ta da!” Lil put the jar of ginger on top of the bread house. The joke was complete.

“Now,” said Figgy. “Let’s hide the real one.

The four friends spent the next hour putting a giant gingerbread house together for the boys to decorate. By the time they were finished, they were covered in icing and Nim was stuck to the table.

“Uh,” said Lil, holding her stomach. “I’m SO full of icing I could burst!”

“Me too,” groaned Pixie.

Figgy disappeared into the refrigerator and came back with a big bottle of maple syrup. “Here’s the perfect cure for stomach aches. It’s Grade B, but beggars can’t be choosers.”

Nim looked at the bottle and let out a horrified yelp. He flew fast at Figgy and knocked it out of Figgy’s hands.

Figgy spluttered. “What did you do that for Nim!?!?”

Nim pointed a shaking finger at the syrup. “Don’t you see what it says on the label?”

Figgy floated to the bottle to get a closer look and turned as green as his hat. “Oh, no. No, no, no. I–I should have looked first.”

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“What is it?” called Lil. “What’s the matter with it?”

Nim turned to Lil, his expression grave. “It’s poison.”

The little color left on Lil’s face drained. “Not…”.

“Yes. I’m afraid so. It’s…sugar-free. Sugar-free syrup.”

 

 

Mischief Makers Day 13: Nurse Nim

Oh Little Lil and Figgy too
Are resting tired and weak
And Pixie has a bumps on her head
and bruises on her cheek
Yet Nim and Glitter tend them
They soothe their aches and pains
Nim plays the Nurse while Glitter heals
With bandaids on her reins

When Nim finished his version of Oh Little Town of Bethlehem Figgy and Pixie clapped. Even Lil smiled.

“Give Lil the ice pack, Nim.” Glitter cantered over to Figgy to check on his eye.

“Ahem.” Nim tapped his toe and stared pointedly at Glitter.

Glitter sighed. “Give Lil the ice pack, Nurse Nim.”

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Nim hopped over to Lil. “Here you go.”

“Thanks.”

“You know,” said Figgy with his eye on Lil. “Maybe it’s time to call a truce.”

“Yes,” added Pixie staring at Nim. “We all got pretty banged up last night on that climb.”

“Poor Lil was left dangling by her toes all day,” said Glitter. “And just look at the bump on Pixie’s head.”

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“Don’t forget about me!” Figgy pointed to his black eye.

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When Lil had fallen from her bows, one of her flailing arms had socked Figgy right in the eye.

“Sorry about that Figgy.”

Figgy smiled. “Think of the fun we could have if we joined forces!”

“The mischief we could manage!” said Pixie.

A long, uncomfortable but expectant silence hung like a cloud over the group.

Nim peeked at Lil. “What do you say?”

“I guess our war is getting a little…”.

“Crazy?” offered Pixie.

“Silly?” said Figgy.

“Absolutely ridiculous and unnecessary?” added Glitter.

Lil and Nim looked at each other warily. Then, Lil’s eyes began to twinkle. Nim’s lips began to twitch. And, before Glitter could say Merry Christmas, they were laughing and hugging and…best friends once again.

 

 

 

Mischief Makers Day 12: Christmas Climb

“And remember when Lil fell through the ice?”

“Figgy,” Lil said. “It just happened last night. Of course Pixie remembers.”

“And, when Nim got tangled up in the dog sled, and Barrel couldn’t stop licking his face.”

“Pixie,” said Nim. “Everyone remembers…it just happened.”

Pixie and Figgy just laughed harder.

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“Well,” said Nim. “Tonight, Pixie and I have a challenge of our own.”

Lil raised an eyebrow. Figgy raised two.

“A challenge? What kind of challenge?” asked Lil.

“Pixie and I challenge you to–”.

“A Christmas Climb!” blurted Pixie. “On Christmas bows!”

Nim sighed with exasperation and shook his head with a smile.

“Oh I’m sorry Nim! I’m just so excited!”

Lil coughed, trying to hide a laugh. A Christmas Climb was a tradition. Nim and Lil had done one every December for the past five years. She shot Nim a sideways look.

“It was…Pixie’s idea,” said Nim, looking at his feet.

“Of course,” said Lil.

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“When do we get started?” said Figgy. The awkward silence transformed into a buzz of excitement.

Pixie led the group to the hallway just outside the boys’ room. It was covered in bows with four ribbons hanging down from the top.

Ta da!” Pixie whisper-shouted.

Figgy looked up at the red, green, silver and gold climbing wall. “Rules?”

No flying,” said Nim.

No floating,” said Pixie.

No…flapping?” teased Figgy.

There’s one rule you forgot, Nim,” Lil said quietly.

All the elves looked at Lil.

“Have fun!”

 

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Mischief Makers Day 11: Holidathlon

Lil was still miffed about The Balloon Incident. Figgy thought it was hilarious.

“Oh come on Lil,” said Figgy with a smile. “It was pretty funny.”

“Funny? Waking up in a hot, elf slobbered balloon is not my idea of funny, Figgy.”

Figgy shook his head. “What happened to your sense of fun, Lil?”

Lil turned wide eyes on Figgy. “My sense of…fun? There is nothing wrong with my sense of fun!”

Figgy raised an eyebrow.

Lil huffed.

“Look, how about instead of being angry,” said Figgy. “We challenge them.”

Lil crossed her arms.

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“No really, let’s challenge them to a Holidathlon.”

“A what?” Lil crinkled her brow.

“It’s a race with three Christmas themed events. First event, a Christmas Bag Race. Event number two, a Sprinkle Skate and the finale is a Dog-sled Race.”

“That sounds like so much…fun!”

Figgy smiled. “I think it’s time you started having fun again.”

Lil and Figgy pulled out paper sacks and markers for decorating.

They hooked a tail-wagging, drooling Barrel up to a miniature sled, then turned to Glitter to do the same.

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“Don’t even think about it,” said Glitter.

Finally, they prepared the sink for skating.

When they’d finished, Lil’s smile was bigger than ever.

“This was a great idea, Figgy. Thanks for reminding me how much fun it is to have…fun.”.

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Nim and Pixie crashed through the window and landed in a heap next to Lil.

“Wow!” said Pixie. “This looks great!”

“Thanks!” said Figgy with a big grin. “I thought the ice lake was a little…”. Figgy trailed off at the look on Lil’s face. “Er…thanks.”

Lil glared at Nim.

Nim glared at Lil.

“Ahem,” said Figgy. “Lil and I wondered if…that is to say we wanted to…”.

“We challenge you to a Holidathlon,” finished Lil.

“A holi–what?” asked Nim.

“Racin’, skatin’ and sleddin’!” said Figgy waving his hands at each station in turn.

“Oooo…that sounds exciting!” exclaimed Pixie.

“Well?” Lil looked to Nim.

Nim narrowed his eyes. “Challenge accepted.”

Figgy and Pixie jumped and twirled in approval.

“What’s first?” asked Pixie.

“Step right up,” said Figgy. “Decorate your bag and get ready to race!”

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The four elves set to decorating their bags with the most outrageous Christmas designs.

Figgy drew Santa in a Hawaiian shirt drinking from a coconut with Rudolph lounging in the pool.

Pixie continued the theme with Dasher and Dancer bringing Mrs. Claus a Pina Colada.

“What is that on your bag, Lil?” Figgy squinted.

“Oh, just a Christmas song.”

Fill the track with lots of candy
Fa la la la la, la la la la
When I win it will be dandy
Fa la la la la, la la la la
Nim will never win against me
Fa la la, la la la, la la la
He’s too slow and always will be
Fa la la la la, la la la la

“Mine has a song on it too,” said Nim belligerently.

Racing round and round the tra-ack
Fa la la la la, la la la la
In a Christmas paper sa-ack
Fa la la la la, la la la la
Always passing Lil and Figgy
Fa la la, la la la, la la la
I’ll win this race but it’s no biggie
Fa la la la la, la la la la

Figgy and Pixie shared a worried look.

“Maybe this wasn’t such a good idea.”

Mischief Makers Day 10: Hot Air Balloons

“We were stuck in that…glass prison all day!” Nim exclaimed, furiously pacing in front of Santa’s desk.

Santa’s beard quivered and his eyes twinkled. “Nim, I’m glad to see you are feeling better.”

Nim stopped pacing and smiled sheepishly. “Sorry Santa, it’s good to see you too.”

Pixie coughed.

“Oh! Pixie!” Nim turned. “Santa, I’d like you to meet Pixie the Birthday Elf.”

“Nice to meet you, Mr. Santa, sir.” Pixie gave an awkward curtsy.

“Ho, ho, hello, Pixie. Good to meet you too.”

Pixie cleared her throat nervously and looked away. She knew what was coming. “You’ve told the Birthday Beagle, haven’t you?”

“I’m afraid so, Pixie. The Council of Holidays would have been very unhappy with me had I not reported it.”

Pixie hung her head. “Of course. I understand, sir.”

“No, my dear,” said Santa. “Don’t look so glum. I have some good news.”

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Pixie’s head snapped up.

Santa’s eyes twinkled. “The Birthday Beagle has agreed to let you work with my elves for the rest of the season as long as you continue your duties as Birthday Elf to both boys.”

Pixie whirled into the air, a pink blur whizzing through the room.

“She seems happy about his decision,” said a smirking Nim.

“Oh, Nim! Isn’t it exciting??” said Pixie as they flew back. “I get to stay! I get to come out more than one day a year!”

Nim did a loop in the air. “What should we do to celebrate?”

Pixie eyed Nim. “You mean how can we get even with Lil and Figgy?”

“Exactly.”

“You have to admit, the snow globe was a clever idea.”

“Oh, ok.” Nim muttered. “It was very clever.”

And,” Pixie smiled. “It gave me an idea, but it will take some sneakiness.”

“Tell me more,” said Nim.

“Well…”.

After Pixie told Nim her plan, he couldn’t wait to get started.

“I bring a peace offering.” Nim floated to the couch next to Figgy and Lil.

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“Are those…snickerdoodles?” asked Lil.

“Yep, your favorite.”

Figgy and Lil eyed the cookies suspiciously.

“Oh come on,” said Nim. “They’re still warm.” He pushed the plate toward them.

Still cautious, Figgy and Lil picked up a cookies and sniffed them.

Figgy nibbled on his. “Seems ok,” he said to Lil.

Lil shrugged. The cookies looked delicious. And they were so hungry from all the scheming. They gobbled them up

Figgy suddenly slumped soundlessly to the floor. Lil’s eyelids grew heavy. She stared at the cookie and then looked up at Nim.

“You, you,” she started and, letting out a big yawn, slid down next to Figgy.

“Aaaaand they’re out!” said Nim.

Pixie zoomed in holding a balloon in each hand.

“Ok, now this is going to be the tricky part.” Her eyes twinkled. “Should we put them in head or feet first?”

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Mischief Makers Day 9: Snowglobes

“But Santa! Where did she come from? I’ve never even heard of a Birthday Elf.”

Santa smiled. “Well, I did tell the Birthday Beagle he could copy my idea. I just didn’t realize he had gotten that far along.”

Lil huffed.

“I think it’s great!” said Figgy.

“Well I don’t think it’s great at all.” Lil grumbled, glaring at Figgy.

Fifteen minutes later, Figgy and Lil were on their way back.

“What if we get them back for that jello incident?” Figgy said, breaking the tense silence.

Lil smiled, mischief lighting her eyes. “I know exactly what we can do. But, we’ll have to sneak in through the garage.”

Figgy looked nervously at Lil as they circled around to the front of the house. “I hope it’s not dangerous, Lil. I don’t want anyone to get hurt.”

Lil grinned making Figgy even more nervous.

They snuck in under the garage door. When they got inside, they crept around the closet toward the refrigerator.

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Lil, what are we–”.

Shhhhhhhh! Just go grab a that bag of mini marshmallows and meet me back here. If you see Glitter, tell her to keep Nim and Pixie distracted.”

Figgy did as he was told. He ran into Glitter and gave her the message.

“They’re pretty distracted right now. Pixie is helping Nim take off his cast.”

“Good!”

Figgy grabbed the bag of marshmallows and silently whizzed back Lil, who was setting a clear bowl propped on top of a paper plate.

“Now what?” asked Figgy as he munched the marshmallows.

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“Did you see Nim or Pixie?”

“No, but Glitter said they are taking Nim’s cast off.”

Lil couldn’t help but smile. “So it’s finally ready to come off!” She scowled, remembering she was supposed to be mad. “Ok, here’s the plan. You take those marshmallows and make a trail from the Christmas tree to the counter.”

“O-kaaay,” said Figgy. “Then what?”

Lil waved her arms with a flourish at the bowl and paper plate. It was only then that Figgy noticed the bowl was propped precariously on a pencil that was tied to a tripwire. Next to the trap was a snowglobe with a sign that read: Elf in Captivity, Do not disturb

He looked at Lil shrewdly. “Remind me never to get on your bad side.

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