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The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) - Literature (16) - Nairaland

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Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by Fazemood(m): 1:26pm On Sep 02

@Fazemood As in, I don't know if you remember when you said this, but you posted one comment like that, I think it was close to when Nebud just entered Katsaoru and was beating up the uspec that helped to steal its bag. Anyway, you posted a comment saying that you didn't just like the uspecs. And when I read that comment, in my mind I was just thinking, I can't wait for you to meet Marcinus. I just knew that you would like Marcinus grin Also, HAPPY BIRTHDAY I knew there was a reason why my mind was telling me to post double this weekend wink Hope you had a great day!

Yes obehid I remember speaking out my dislike for uspecs but Marcinus is different. In my mind it seems human than uspec to me. Just like it's mind.

And about my bday, i t was a blast. Yesterday was the bash, it went well also. Thank you for being very generous last weekend. grin
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by Ultimategeneral: 4:02pm On Sep 02
Awesome. I knew Nebud will use this to its advantage. That’s reassuring to know that it’s studies are worth the time it took. More experience now and more understanding of how things worked. From the novice Nebud to a well informed and reformed Nebud. Thanks for the update. Still waiting for the next update.
as in eeh even fajoromoh would find it difficult to recognise this new nebud.
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by obehiD: 4:09am On Sep 04
@Botaflica Next update is here. I'm glad that you can see the reformed Nebud

@Fazemood I'm so happy you had a great birthday party!

@Ultimategeneral I agree oh, Fajahromo would not recognize this Nebud
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by obehiD: 4:09am On Sep 04
Part 15

I smirked at the contented smile on Musa’s face. It lay on one of the lounging beds, its head resting on the interlocked hands underneath it. I on the other hand lay on my side, my head held up by a single fist as I watched the imp. I could not fault the smile on Musa’s face though, the night we’d had, had been a truly unique one.

I had hosted the imperial one.

It still felt strange even to think it. How far I’d come from the de trop uspec in that slum in Hakute. I could still remember how awed I’d been at the sight of the uspecs flying into my slums, and the noble one which had accompanied them. Then, I had dreamt of seeing greater sights, and greater uspecs. I had never thought that I would have the distinction of hosting an imperial in my home. I’d never thought I would have a home. But, after the exertions of the day, it had been obvious that Marcinus was not ready to go back to its Chateau. It had not mentioned Danim and Jubar, the bannerets it had lost in the inn, but I could tell that their loss weighed heavily on it. I had never seen the uspec look so lonely. Marcinus chose a lounging bed in my rented suite, over its much grander bed in the Chateau. We cleaned together when we woke, Marcinus commenting on the unique design of the tunnel which led to the okun pond, and then had breakfast.

I did not realize how pleasing Marcinus’ company could be once I accepted that it was what it appeared to be. Our escape from the real world ended when Marcinus’ imp came with a message that the Kaiser was demanding its offspring’s presence in the Chateau. I escorted Marcinus all the way to the portal which led to the bubble lift. Although, giving Marcinus’ skill with spectra, it could have easily created quicksand underneath it, and used that quicksand to teleport to the portal. But, it didn’t. I think it refrained partly because it wanted my company, and partly because it truly did not like to use spectra. Which was all the more confusing for one so skilled in the magic. Perhaps I could ask Marcinus for pointers with the kute eyes manipulation of okun. Though I’d somehow managed to use the magic in the kennel, I could not recall how. The only thing I remembered was the channel, the pain through which we’d communicated.

The thought of asking Marcinus for help rose another thought in my mind. It reminded me that I had come to Katsoaru for a purpose. I had come to take Marcinus’ eye. It also reminded me that Manus wanted Marcinus dead. I remembered standing in front of the portal with Marcinus and contemplating over what to do about this fact. One thing had become clear to me after the night I spent hosting Marcinus, the uspec truly cherished its sibling. Would it believe that Manus was capable of killing it? I did not think it would believe me and so I had not told it at the portal. Even though I knew that I could not truly be friends with Marcinus, not when my mission was to cause it harm, I found that I was not willing to spoil that moment by bringing up the subject. I would always have last night, I would always have those few moments when I had befriended an imperial who treated me as an equal.

I heard Musa chuckle. That sound broke off my musings. I stared at the imp. “What is it?” I asked.

Musa was sitting up in the lounging bed now. “Oh nothing master.” It said, “I’ve just never quite seen that expression on your face before.”

“What expression?”


I frowned as I pondered that. Was it true? Had I truly never been happy before? No, I had been happy, once, long ago, while I was a de trop in some nameless slum no one cared about. But since I left, I sighed, I hadn’t had much reason for joy since then. Not with the chaos that my life became. But now, in this moment, with a friend who preferred my company to its family’s. Perhaps. Could I stay? Perhaps find a way to stop Manus’ evil plan. If I could kill the uspec before it killed Marcinus, then Marcinus would become heir. I liked the sound of that, Marcinus would make a much better Kaiser than Manus.

Marcinus’s eye.

The voice in my head immediately pulled me back, returning me to reality. Even if I wanted to kill Manus, how would I do it? Manus had spectra, and unlike Marcinus, it enjoyed using it. It had already changed my identity, which, considering the magic of the fogs which allowed an uspec to take a life, was not the worst thing it could have done to me. I could not leave this port without Marcinus’ eye, but did I care? If I could save the uspec’s life, then I could stay here forever. I could find a home in Katsoaru, I could find joy. But how could I save Marcinus’ life. Manus would not let me get close to it without using its spectra. Could I go to Maraci, their progenitor? No, Maraci would not believe me. I could let them see the honesty in my memories using a pious one’s pansophy, but that would not only reveal my identity as irira, it would also reveal Musa’s as a pious slave. No, I could not do that. So, what could I do?

Marcinus’s eye.

Why? I wanted to scream the question out. I could not do it, not to Marcinus. The uspec had been kind to me, it had saved me, returning my identity without being asked. Marcinus was the uspec I dreamt that my progenitor had been; a great fighter and a noble person. How could I harm it? I’d already had two chances to take its eye, two moments when I was alone with the uspec and could have taken it by surprise, but I just could not do it. Not without knowing why. What was this voice in my head? Where did it come from? Why did it want me to harm an uspec like Marcinus? Suddenly, I wanted the answers, I wanted to know, why.


I sat on the lounging bed and stared unseeingly at the imp.


It was Musa’s nudge on my knee which pulled me out of my reverie. “What is it?”

“I was going to ask you that.” The imp was kneeling in front of me, staring up into my face. It bore a worried expression. “Are you alright master?”

I nodded. “You never told me what happened with the imp you went searching for.”

“Oh!” Musa jumped to its feet then and sat on the lounging bed beside me. It sat in a way that only an imp or a young uspec would. Its legs were pulled up so that its arms wrapped around them, as if pulling the bent legs closer to the imp’s neck. “It was very unusual master.” Musa said.

“Tell me.”

The imp nodded. “Of course, master.” It crossed its legs underneath it and rested its hands on the surface of the bed behind its body, as if preparing for a long tale. “I found Chike in the market, master, and it confessed that it had recognized me as soon as it saw me. Of course, I knew that, I do have pansophy, and I was touching it for a while.”

I rose an eyebrow up in question.

The imp smiled mischievously. “I would never use pansophy like that on you master, but everyone else is fair game.”

I laughed at that.

“Well, Chike was very nervous about talking to me. It took a long time before the imp confessed to recognizing me, and even longer before it was willing to speak about our former masters. But when it accepted that I could be trusted, Chike took me on a walk around the Acropolis. We kept walking until Chike was satisfied that we were not followed, then it took me to an inn on the border of the commoners’ area, which caters exclusively to imps. That was when the real story began.

It turns out that I was right master, Chike had not abandoned master Calam in those final days. Master Calam had sent Chike away. Apparently, master Calam had a startling hard fog coffer, just like yours master. It entrusted the bearing of that coffer to a two-band noble, Sensu, master Calami’s closest friend. Master Calam ordered Chike to accompany Sensu with the coffer. At first, Chike refused.”

“The imp refused an order from a Kaiser?”

Musa smiled. “There were imps who were close to the family. Chike and I for example were unconventionally close to the masters. Besides, master Calam was not one to get too offended by hearing the word ‘no’. It was truly a scholar at heart, and so it believed in the power of a good argument. It believed that the peak of innovation could not be accomplished in a vacuum. It would not have minded Chike’s refusal. According to Chike, master Calam appeared different in those last days before it left. Chike could not put its finger on what exactly it was, but when master Calam told the imp that it would be offering a higher service to master Calami by accompanying the coffer and protecting it, Chike believed.”


“This, master, is where it gets truly baffling. Chike believed, and still believes, that the young master, master Calami’s offspring, was in that coffer. I know, I told Chike that it wasn’t possible, that I saw the young master’s corpse when I returned from Hakute, but Chike is convinced that the young master was in that coffer. It says that the coffer was unlike any it had ever seen, that the coffer had tiny holes in it. Too small to see into the coffer, but large enough to allow air through. Why would a coffer for storing items have such holes, unless it had something alive in it? Chike says that before it left the palace, it searched everywhere for the young master. The young master had been less than a week old then, too young to go wandering around. Chike did not find the young master, and so it believed that it was in that coffer, being led away from the palace. Master Calam refused to tell Chike any details, but Chike still believes strongly in this.”

“What do you believe?”

“I don’t know master. I was so sure that it was the young master that was killed, I did see the body. But master Calam was an expert at pansophy, for an uspec. It could very easily have given some of the young master’s appearance to some other young uspec.”

I sat straighter. Was I about to hear how I came to be termed de trop and placed in a slum? “What happened to the coffer?”

“The three of them left Lahooni with it.”


Musa nodded. “The noble Sensu, Chike, and Sensu’s most trusted imp. It wasn’t until they arrived, that Chike learnt of their destination.”


“Here master, Katsoaru.”

I leaned closer towards the imp. “You don’t say.”

“Now that I think about it, it makes sense. If Chike is right, and it was the young master in that coffer, master Calam would have had a plan. It would have sent the uspec off to be raised by a line of Kaisers that it respected. Master Calam was great friends with the former Kaiser of this port, and even master Calami was close with its offspring, Maraci, the current Kaiser. If master Calam was going to send its heir to be raised by any Kaiser, it would have been the Kaiser of this port, one it shared such a rich history with.”

“What happened?” I asked, as my mind reeled with the implications. I thought of being raised here, in the Acropolis that I had come in such a short time to enjoy. Of course the clouds were intolerable, but the uspecs were not all bad. I could have been friends with Marcinus from childhood, could have trained with the uspec.

“They were intercepted before they could deliver the coffer, and master Calam’s message, to the Kaiser of Katsoaru. A troop of pious ones descended on them. Chike froze at the sight of the yielders. It was an unequal fight master, at least thirty pious ones against one uspec and two imps. I could sense Chike’s shame when it confessed its failing. I do not blame it. It takes courage to fight against yielders, especially when you know what they will do to you when you lose. And in Chike’s case, a loss was inevitable. And so Chike froze, it did not fight, it allowed the leader, to go through its thoughts and memories. Takabat was a true noble…”

“Takabat?” I snapped the familiar name out.
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by obehiD: 4:09am On Sep 04
“Yes master, do you know it?”

I nodded, my teeth clenched as I thought of the pious one who had saved my life, all those years ago in the pits. I had never met it, never seen it, I’d only heard its voice forbidding Maxad from using pansophy to make me easier to kill in the arena. Of course, my good memories of Takabat were clouded by the fact that the uspec was Fajahromo’s sibling. “Yes, it served in the pits.”

Musa nodded. “Of course, I forgot about your history there. Well, Takabat was also an admirer of master Calami’s. It had looked up to the master, and so when Takabat saw Chike there, a slave that it recognized as master Calami’s, it prevented the yielders from sapping it. Instead, Chike was given to a novice based here, in Katsoaru. Chike never saw Sensu, its slave, or the coffer again. But Chike has never forgotten how it failed master Calam. Two days ago, only moments before I found it, Chike found the key to redeeming itself.”

“It did?”

“Yes master. That was the day of the Kaiser’s bout. The market was filled with visiting uspecs. Chike is still owned by the novices of the Order of Procreation, it sells in a stall in the market for them. That stall is frequented by travelling pious ones. For the first time in over twenty years, Chike saw the imp, Sensu’s slave, walking behind a yielder who’d come to the port for the celebrations.”

“What did the slave have to say?”

Musa shook its head. “The imp recognized Chike, but it could not talk, not with its master there. They both decided to meet tonight master, on the eve of the naming ceremony, when all pious ones invited will be spending the night at the Chateau, in preparation for the naming of the heir to Katsoaru, tomorrow. I told Chike that I wanted to be there when it met with the imp.”

I nodded. “I will accompany you.” I said. “And Chike is certain that it was the heir to Lahooni in that coffer?”

“Only Sensu had the key master, and it never used it in Chike’s presence, so it never saw inside the coffer. But Chike believes that it was the young master in that coffer.”

“Interesting.” I said, rising to my feet.


I didn’t realize that I was walking to the door until I’d reached it. “I’m going for a walk.” I said. I did not wait for the imp’s reply before I stepped into the humid air. With the extra sight I consistently used, I had no difficulty seeing through the clouds. I did not even mind the liquid drops too much. It was the congestion of people that I found irritating. It was obvious from the conveyance of coffers, that the Acropolis was receiving an influx of uspecs. All here for the naming ceremony, I assumed. Even earlier in the day, when I had accompanied Marcinus to the portal, I had seen signs of the coming event all around the burg. Banners hung from inns with the sigil of the line of the Kaisers of Katsoaru, and declarations of the coming naming ceremony. Now, as I walked, I found even more startling banners and announcements. In one establishment, uspecs were being invited to come in and make bets on who the next Kaiser would be. Eavesdropping as I walked by the entrance to that establishment, I found that, though many believed that Manus would be chosen, they accepted that the Kaiser’s fondness for Marcinus made it difficult to predict. I even heard rumors of a source close to the Kaiser, who for the right price, could say conclusively which of its offspring the Kaiser would choose.

The brightness of the orange dots showed that the day was still young. I found myself returning to my suite much sooner than I had intended. The bustle of people preparing for the naming ceremony prevented any sort of thinking. I found all of it too distracting. It was too distracting to ponder on the tale that Musa had told me, too distracting to decide what I would do about Manus and Marcinus. So, I returned to the suite in a foul mood.

Musa was at the door when I stormed in. Sensing my mood, the imp remained quiet, choosing to stare pensively at me instead. I went into the room and paced. I was just about to complete my tenth round around the perimeter when I saw the large tome which I had purchased from the market the day before the bout. I walked over to it, pulled it out of the open cupboard and took it out to the entertaining room with me. Laying sprawled on a lounging bed, I ran my hand over the cover, tracing each bolded gold letter of the title, THE ISLE OF SHUNS.

Then, hoping that by distracting myself for an hour or two I would get the clarity to formulate a plan, I opened the tome and began reading. I had learnt from the first picture tome which I’d read, that I loved reading. I loved the action of getting lost in a good story. Before long, I was completely lost in this one.

“Master!” Musa’s yell broke my fascination with the tale. I could not believe how much of it I had read. From the count it seemed that I was already four hundred pages deep. How long had I been reading for? Must have been hours. But it had gone by so quickly. I was trapped in the tale of the isle where shunned uspecs were sent.

Stretching, I rose from the lounging bed and walked over to the room. Musa stood by my bed, my belt and the contents of it spread out on the surface. My eye caught on the pouch of worth first. I had forgotten about that little fortune. When once I would have been so excited by the wealth that I counted every single piece, now I found no need to rush quantifying it. I already had more wealth than I could spend in three lifetimes.

“What is it Musa?”

Musa turned to face me then. It held a bottle in its hand. I frowned, confused for moments, until I remembered what it was. It was the vial that Manus had given me, the one with the black pellets. I had only used one of those pellets in Marcinus’ drink and it had been so affected by just that one. What would have happened if I used more?

“This!” Musa’s sockets were wide. “Do you know what this is master?”

I shook my head. “Some kind of befuddling pill?”

“Oh no master,” Musa shook its head, “it is much worse than that.”

I walked closer to the imp. “What is it?”

“It’s loony.”


“It’s a poison master, made from the extracts of a weed which grows in the okun. Each pellet of loony contains polluted emotions, all five of the emotions master. Anyone who ingests this, is basically ingesting polluted emotions. After a long period of taking this, the person would lose its sanity, it would lose any ability to form thoughts, or access memory. There is no cure once an uspec gets to that stage. For an imp, the only cure is to first remove the polluted emotions and then to sap it down to its last sustainable element.”

My eyes widened. “How long would you say an uspec has to imbibe it, to reach this point?”

“Two months, three at the most.”

That was impossible. Marcinus had been taking Manus’ pellets since its progenitor announced that it was under consideration for heir, which was a year ago from tomorrow, the day of the naming ceremony. How had Marcinus survived? “Is there any cure?” I asked. “Any way that the effects of the pellet could be counteracted?”

“Not once an uspec reaches the point of insanity.”

“But before?”

Musa frowned. “The only cure I know of, is to drain the polluted emotions before they can take root. But, that would mean that the uspec would have to be drained of the emotions every time it’s under the influence of the loony. I do not know if such a thing is possible.”

“Frosted beasts.”

“You are right master!” Musa’s eyes widened. “Frosted beasts can do it. Other than an irirakun of all five spectrums, the frosted beasts are the only other creatures that can manipulate all emotions. They are not like kun, they cannot transfer emotions between people, they can only give and take emotions from or onto themselves. If an uspec taking loony, also just happened to have a frosted beast, then the uspec would survive. But the chances master…” Musa’s words frizzled to a stop. Its sockets turned back to the bottle, then to me, and then its eyebrows pulled further apart. “Marcinus.” It said. “Someone is poisoning Marcinus.”

“Manus. That’s why Manus had the swan taken from Marcinus, it must have realized when the loony did not work as intended, that something was interfering.” Marcinus was right, Manus did care for it. Manus had first tried to render Marcinus comatose, before it decided to kill it. Wasn’t that just the epitome of sibling affection? But once it was clear that the pellets were not going to work in time for the naming ceremony, Manus decided to take more drastic steps. That was when the assassination attempts began. I returned the swan in time to thwart that first attempt, and I had stopped the second in the inn, but I knew that Manus would try again.

“Manus is trying to decapitate Marcinus? What will we do master?”

Marcinus’s eye.

The voice in my head roared. I shook my head, trying to dislodge the thought. I would save Marcinus’ life first. I owed the uspec that much at least.

Marcinus’s eye.

The voice in my head insisted. No! I yelled at it.

Marcinus’s eye! Marcinus’s eye!! Marcinus’s eye!!!

The voice became insistent, demanding in a way that it had never been before. It repeated the cry like a mantra, beating the words into my brain until I heard nothing but those words repeating on a loop in my head.

“What will we do master?” I saw Musa’s mouth move, even though I could not hear it speak.

“Take Marcinus’ eye.” I heard myself say.

“Master?” Musa frowned.

But my mind was forging ahead. Take Marcinus’ eye. I repeated it one more time and the insistent prodding in my head stopped. Once I’d made the decision, the voice went away.

Now, I knew exactly what I had to do. The answer had been there from the start. This was what I came to Katsoaru for. I could not smile, because it was not a happy assignment, but at least, it was a solution.

“Master?” Musa called out. “Why would you take Marcinus’ eye?”

“It’s the only way.” I replied.

Musa frowned, “I don’t understand.”

“The isle of shuns.” I said. The story in the tome was so fresh that once I allowed myself to consider the possibility, it became clear what I had to do. The one thing that all uspecs in the isle had in common was that they were all shuns. In all my time in the spectral existence, I had never seen an uspec without its center eye. Obviously, uspecs had to be losing their eyes, because other uspecs stole those eyes to get spectra. Yet, I had never seen an uspec without that center eye. Now, I finally knew why. It was because, as I’d learned in the tome, once an uspec lost its center eye, it became shun. All shuns were cast away from ports and sent to live in the isle.

“The isle of shuns?”

“What do you think the Kaiser of Katsoaru would do if its favored offspring lost its center eye? Would it still think that the offspring deserved to be Kaiser?”

Musa gaped. Then it shook its head slowly. “No Kaiser would name a shun as heir. But master, that would bring shame down on Marcinus. Marcinus is a warrior, a fighter, it would rather die than be shun.”

“I would rather it lived.”

“It will never forgive you master.” Musa stated. “If you manage it, and I don’t know how you will, but if you do, Marcinus will never forgive you.”

I took a deep breath and then exhaled. “I do not care if it hates me. I want Marcinus to live Musa, it must live. This is the only way. I know Maraci, it is too fond of Marcinus to send it to the isle. It will keep Marcinus here, all Marcinus would have to live with is its shame. But Marcinus is a skilled fighter, the loss of its center eye will not diminish that. In time, Marcinus will rise above the ridicule and earn the respect of those it fights. It will take time, but it will be time that Marcinus has.”

Musa nodded. “You are right master. It is despicable, but it is the only way. I will go with you.”

I shook my head. “No, you will go with Chike to meet Senu’s slave. I will go alone.”

“But master….”

“This is the eve of the naming ceremony. Manus is going to attack tonight. That’s the pattern to its assassinations, it has them done at night. I don’t know what form the attack will take, but I know it will most likely happen tonight. I will have to face Manus to let it know that Marcinus is no longer a threat to its ambitions. It will be easier without you there. Manus has already said that it does not want to see you in the Chateau. You go on your mission and I will go on mine. It is best that way.”

With that decision made, I began preparing to leave for the Chateau. As I filled a bottle with okun, I realized how strange the voice in my head was. From the start, I had thought that it meant Marcinus harm. I had never once thought that its demand was actually made to save Marcinus’ life.

1 Like

Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by tunjilomo(m): 7:53am On Sep 04
This is a surprising turn of event. Obehid, you never cease to amaze. I really want to be like you when I grow up grin.
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by cassbeat(m): 9:09am On Sep 04
Exactly what I've been feeling... Marcinus won't die that I know.. I am thinking that this is how nebud became kaiser by killing manus and collecting marcinus eye thereby rendering it lesser than it is... My thoughts tho... By the by obehid this is my reserved comment and this update was lit. Thanks
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by rentalghost(m): 9:44am On Sep 04
Is this story published (officially)? Sometimes I feel we are enjoying it too much for free.

1 Like

Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by ayshow6102(m): 10:36am On Sep 04
I think that nebud is going to regret this decision because this voice is from that evil pious from the pits that helped him escape from the pits Obehid thanks for the update jare with love from South Africa
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by cherriex(f): 1:16pm On Sep 04
And finally, something to shift my mind off all the occurrences of the week.
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by Fazemood(m): 8:34pm On Sep 04
Hmmm. I am just going to sit back n observe.
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by Fazemood(m): 8:35pm On Sep 04
Is this story published (officially)?
Sometimes I feel we are enjoying it too much for free.
Yes true. In fact very true

1 Like

Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by Botaflica(m): 10:00pm On Sep 04
Hmmm this is a serious unraveling oooo
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by obehiD: 5:17am On Sep 06
@tunjilomo Yay! I am so happy that I managed to amaze you. LOL, that your last comment is too funny.

@cassbeat Thank you for reading. I will in turn reserve my comment on your reserved comment until after the next update grin

@rentalghost No, the story is not officially published yet, but I am working on getting the earlier books in the human part of the series, published. As long as you keep sharing your enjoyment of the story with me, it's all good grin

@ayshow6102 Interesting thoughts. Wow, you're in South Africa right now? Please, stay safe.

@cherriex I know, this has been a very sad week. I am happy that I was able to take your mind off it even if it's only for a little bit

@Fazemood Hmmm. I am just going to sit back and write so that you can continue to observe, and really enjoy your observations hahaha

@Botaflica indeed, that is what I was hoping for!
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by cassbeat(m): 8:54am On Sep 06
[quote author=obehiD post=81

@cassbeat Thank you for reading. I will in turn reserve my comment on your reserved comment until after the next update grin
[/quote] OK obehid I'll be waiting.. Pls make this next episode lengthy like last Saturday's...
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by Ultimategeneral: 6:23pm On Sep 06
hmmm... nebud on suicide mission.marcinus don't need spectra to kill this one sef.
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by ayshow6102(m): 9:19pm On Sep 06
[quote author=obehiD post=81964343]
@ayshow6102 Interesting thoughts. Wow, you're in South Africa right now? Please, stay safe.

Nah I dreamt after reading your update and I found myself in South Africa I was almost lynched by the angry mob until I logged in to nairaland and showed them your story they were hooked unto it that they didn't know when I escaped and woke up


Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by Dathypebruv(m): 10:22pm On Sep 06
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by cherriex(f): 11:09pm On Sep 06
Me sha,I just dey my pink okun dey wait for Saturday update @obehid I hail woh,i remain loyal.
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by obehiD: 3:39am On Sep 07
@cassbeat This update will be only one part long, it won't be two parts, unfortunately. But the one part is pretty long smiley

@Ultimategeneral HAHAHA! I love this! lol

@ayshow6102 grin Did you actually dream about this or did you make it up?

@Datyhpebruv cheesy

@cherriex Thank you! Next update has come oh!
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by obehiD: 3:47am On Sep 07
Part 16

I could tell that there was something wrong as soon as I walked into the Chateau. First, there were fewer guards in the entry bubble than there usually was at this time of the day. Once I entered into the Chateau, I found the walkways unusually quiet, and empty. I didn’t know what I expected on the great eve of the naming ceremony, but I’d at least thought that there’d be a celebration. If not, what was there to mark such a momentous occasion? I kept walking, making my way to the imperials’ suites. The siblings shared the same wing of the Chateau.

I found my progress unusually ease. Where were the guards who were supposed to raise an alarm on sighting me? Surely, Manus knew that I’d been freed. Although, now that I thought about it, Manus had no way of knowing that I’d been freed unless Marcinus told it. So, assuming that Marcinus had not told Manus what it had done for me, then no guards would be looking specifically for me, but there’d still be guards lining the walkways as there usually were.

My anxiety over the situation turned to fear when I walked to Manus’ suite and found it free of guards. I walked into the entertaining room with the lounging beds and found them all empty. Where were the uspecs?

I headed towards Marcinus suite then.

That was when I heard the first sounds of life. Two guards stood blocking further movement into the hallway. These were the same guards that were usually posted outside the curtains to Manus’ suite. What were they doing here? The guards had their hands on the hilt of their swords, their eyes darting uneasily around the hallway.

As soon as they saw me, they drew the swords out from their sheaths.

“This area is off limits noble one.” The one to the right said.

I sized them up. For the time being, I decided to keep my hand away from the cutlass to keep them at ease. They would be easier to kill if they did not see the danger coming. Their presence this close to Marcinus’ chamber raised my suspicions that whatever Manus planned for its sibling, it meant to do it right then.

“Why?” I asked.

The guards looked at each other. Had they truly expected me to just turn around without asking any questions?

It was the other one that spoke this time. It placed a smile on its face, as if hoping to dispel my doubts with it. “It is the eve of the naming ceremony, noble one, the imperial ones are to be guarded closely as is the custom.”

Lie! I nodded though, a slight smile forming on my lips as if I believed them. Then I frowned, as if I’d suddenly come upon a troubling thought. I could see the guards take deep breaths and then hold them as if worried about what I’d say. “If that is the case, then why is the imperial Manus’ suite unguarded?” I tried to make the question sound as innocent as I could manage.

The guard’s smile widened. “The siblings share a suite on the eve of the naming ceremony. It is customary.”

The guard was so quick with the response that I almost believed it. It was smart, that meant I had to kill it first.

“Of course.” I said. Then I made as if to turn around. I could see that the guards were preparing to return their swords to their sheaths, before I turned back around, pulling out my cutlass and my dagger at the same time. I stabbed the uspec to the left with the dagger, right as I sliced through the neck of the uspec to the right. They both fell.

I walked further then, stepping over their bodies as I moved. I was two bends away from Marcinus sleeping room, when I saw the first real contingent of warriors. There were six of them, in rows of three, standing at attention with their hands on their hilts and their faces turned avidly to stare at the corridor which I’d just walked into. They saw me as soon as I saw them, so there was no time for deliberation or ruses. They saw the blood on my dagger and cutlass and pulled out their swords.

I threw my dagger into the neck of one before I even reached there. That one fell backwards, knocking down the uspec behind it, and distracting the one behind that one. That left me with three anticipating my arrival. They converged on me.

I knocked away the sword of the one that came first and stabbed it before it could lift up its tentacles to attack. The two that came after I was forced to parry with. I swerved to the left, grabbing an uspec’s tentacles and pulling it in front of me. That one was too weak to withstand the strength of my grip and so it went unwilling into the sword of the other. Still using that uspec as a shield, I sliced through the side of the second uspec’s neck. I let go off the uspec’s tentacles and they both fell together.

Four down, two to go.

The uspecs’ gazes went from the ones that lay sprawled on the ground, to me and my bloodstained cutlass.

“We’ll let you pass if you pay us. Twenty pieces of merit each.” One of them said, after taking another look at the dead uspecs.

I grinned. “I’ll kill you for free.”

One of them lurched towards me. I bent to the ground, dodging the uspec’s sword and grabbing onto the dagger which I’d thrown into a dead uspec’s neck. The uspec was pulling back its sword preparing to attack again, when I rose with the dagger. I stabbed into the uspec’s groin, and pulled the blade all the way up to its neck. The uspec sprayed me with its blood before falling back into the uspec behind it.

That one pushed the uspec away.

“Do you still want me to pay you to pass?” I teased.

The uspec stared at the bodies. It was the one that had brought up the idea of payment. It swallowed and then brought its gaze back to me. “P-p-please.” It stammered out a plea.

“What’s happening?” I asked.

The uspec shook its head. I lashed out with my cutlass and cut off the hand that was holding the hilt of its sword.

“My hand!” the uspec cried, staring as if it no longer recognized the arm without the hand.

I placed the edge of my cutlass against the uspec’s neck. “What’s happening?” I repeated my question.

“The imperial Manus…” the uspec’s voice was too low.

“I can’t hear you.” I warned.

“The imperial Manus hired fifty warriors. They are going to kill the imperial Marcinus.”



“Where is Manus?”

The uspec stared down at its bleeding arm again. I slashed at its neck. It was a slight wound, really just a scratch, but that got the uspec’s attention.

“It’s leading the warriors.”

I nodded. Manus leading the warriors? More like it was accompanying them to make sure that this time the job actually got done. And fifty warriors? Even with my emotions I could not kill them all. And if Manus was there with spectra, I was as good as dead…unless I could convince Manus to let me complete the mission I came to Katsaoru for.

I pulled the cutlass down. I found myself doing something so uncharacteristic, I gaped at my hand as if it was an alien appendage. As I put my finger into the pouch of worth, the fortune I’d been given by the Kaiser, I wondered if this was Marcinus’ influence on me. I pulled out a piece of worth and gave it to the uspec.

Its eye widened. It approached the white piece warily, with its one remaining hand. When it took it from me, its hand was shaking. “For your hand.” I said to the uspec.

“Gra-gratitude noble one.”

I could tell from the look on the uspec’s face that it did not mind losing a hand if it meant that it gained a piece of worth in return. It would probably willingly lose its other hand as well. I nodded, before walking away.

I was more careful as I approached the hall in front of Marcinus’ room. I kept my back to the wall, and each of my weapons firmly gripped in my hands.

The hall got wider the closer I got to Marcinus’ room.

I found the warriors positioned right in front of the room. With my back to the wall, and still hidden by the last bend in the walkway, I was able to count twenty uspecs. Definitely not the fifty that the uspec had claimed Manus had. Then I caught movement from the corridor on the other side of the room, and found more warriors there, hiding as I was, out of the way. Manus really was not taking any chances.

I kept searching, my eyes scanning over each uspec to find the one I wanted. If Manus was there, its spectra would kill me before I killed any of its warriors. I had to make sure Manus was not amongst them, before I took my chances with the uspecs. Twenty against one. Wasn’t too bad with emotions. Definitely doable.

None of the uspecs wore golden bands. It was easy to rule out the ones facing me as they all lacked the imp eyes required to fill their outer eye sockets and gain spectra. I had not seen Manus unclad enough times to know what it would look like without any garments on. I took a step closer and concentrated my search on the center of the group. I was just thinking of how lovely it would be to have a distraction, when Marcinus’ imp, Tammy came running by me.

It saw me standing by the wall with my weapons drawn and it gasped. The gasp was loud enough to draw the attention of the warriors. They all turned.

All including Manus, easily distinguishable now as it stood taller than all the other uspecs, and solely in possession of a completely filled face.

I pushed the imp forward, exposing it to the scrutiny of all the warriors there.

I was glad I did that, when Manus ordered, “Sap it.”

And a previously undistinguishable uspec turned to grab onto the imp. The uspec wore no fraise, but I knew from Manus’ words that it was pious. Which meant that these ‘warriors’ were not merely hired hands. If there were pious amongst them, there were nobles too.

I walked forward, making myself known.

“Imperial one!” I called out, curtsying to the uspec. “Please reconsider.” Another thing I blamed on Marcinus, this, me pleading for an imp. I would not do it for any other though, just this imp who’d found Musa before it had stumbled into Manus’ suite. This imp that Marcinus was so close too.

“Nebud?” Manus frowned, as it stared at me. I rose, without waiting for it to tell me to do so.

“Yes, imperial one.”

An uspec lashed its hand out towards me and I immediately struck out with my sword. Bearing the fact that they could be nobles or pious in mind, I stopped short of cutting the hand off.

Manus smiled. It shook its head. “I will never understand how Marcinus inspires this amount of loyalty in uspecs, never. How are you here Nebud?”

“Does it matter?” I asked.

Manus shook its head. “No. You should have stayed away.”

I saw the fog begin to form in the air around me, and I knew that Manus had every intention of killing me.

“I am not here for the reason you think I am.” I stated, trying to keep my voice calm, as I shifted my focus between the imp in the pious one’s grasp and the imperial one before me.

My words seemed to fascinate Manus. It kept the fog in the air. It did not create more, but it did not remove that which it had already created. “Intriguing. Please, tell me why you are here.”

“I am here for you.” I replied.

“For me?” Manus looked at the uspecs around it, smiling as it did. Immediately, I recognized the uspecs standing closest to it, as nobles which usually surrounded the uspec, part of its noble guard. These were certainly not hired assassins.

1 Like

Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by obehiD: 3:48am On Sep 07
I nodded. “Yes, imperial one, for you. You have a problem, imperial one, and I have a solution which will satisfy both of our ambitions.”

Manus’ head pulled back in shock. The fog disappeared. “Go on.”

“You do not want to kill your sibling.”

“Of course not.”

“You do not have to.”

Manus sighed. “I have spoken to our pater. It seems that Marcinus’ heroic fight against the Kuworytes in the inn on the day of the bout, impressed a lot of the nobles. It is uncertain times for an Uspecipyte port and we need strong leaders. Pater is going to name Marcinus. I cannot let that happen.”

I finally understood the overwhelming show of force. So many fighters, nobles and pious, all for one uspec. “I know a way to make your progenitor change its mind.”

“I am listening.”

“Let me take away Marcinus’ center eye. Let me make it shun.”

As soon as I said the words, Manus looked around it. The uspecs were talking, musing, I heard ‘genius’ a few times. Manus turned back to regard me. “Go on.”

“You do not want Marcinus to die. You tried to poison it with loony first, to make it unsuitable for the position. This assassination is only a last-ditch effort. But, if I take Marcinus’ eye, it will not only fail to be a threat to you, it will keep its sanity, which means that it will become an asset. Marcinus is the greatest fighter you have in this port, and your progenitor is right, in these uncertain times, you need all the great fighters that you can get. Why waste the best? If Marcinus becomes shun, then by right, it should be sent to the Isle of Shuns. Your progenitor will not do it, and when you become Kaiser, you will determine whether or not Marcinus gets to remain here, in the comfort of its home. It will do as you command.”

Manus crossed its hands behind its back. It stared at me. “You have thought this through.”

“Yes, imperial one.”

“It’s brilliant.” Manus said. “I think I’ll do just that, I’ll take away Marcinus’ eye. I see no reason to let you have it.”

How had I not thought of this? My mind scrambled for some way to make Manus change its mind as I saw the fog return. “The swan!” I spat out.

Manus frowned at me, raising an eyebrow in question.

“You are all soarus. The swan produces lit okun, you will need to sacrifice countless of your nobles to the lit okun. You will need enough of them to die and completely cover the floor of lit okun, before anyone will be able to walk into that room.”

“Kutes are killed by lit okun too.” It stated.

“But we at least have a chance of surviving it.” I replied.

Manus scoffed. “I see what my progenitor likes about you. You are so much more than just a brute. Very well then Nebud.”

“And the imp?”

“It cannot survive and tell its tales.”

“Then take its memories of tonight but spare the imp. Marcinus is very fond of this imp, it will thank you for your mercy.”

Manus sighed. It nodded at a pious one. Seconds passed before the pious finally released the imp. The imp went back in the direction it had come in. I placed my bloodied dagger and cutlass into their sheaths on my belt and walked past Manus. I bowed to the uspec, somehow pushing down my strong abhorrence of it, Manus had the key to Marcinus room. It placed its hand against the hard fog, and the fog softened. It jerked its head in the direction of the room, and I walked in.

Marcinus was sitting on its bed, reading a tome. The walls must be soundproof then, because the uspec appeared startled when it saw me. The swan flew from the bed and perched itself on my shoulder, embracing me with its neck.

“Nebud!” Marcinus smiled. “My friend. Are you here to allow me to return the favor you granted me when you let me share your suite for the night?”

I walked over to the bed and placed the swan back on it. A quick glance around the room showed a pitcher of chilled wine, sitting on a table.

“I am afraid I am here to bid you farewell.”

The tome slipped from Marcinus’ hand. The uspec sat up straighter in its bed. “Farewell?” it frowned at me.

I nodded.

“Certainly not. Where are you going? And why the sudden haste? Surely you can wait a week or two, give me time to properly repay you for your friendship.”

Could a heart ache? I swallowed down sorrow and pain, a combination which I’d never felt quite like this before. I was about to betray a friend. It hurt. “No.” I tried to smile but I did not think I appeared convincing. “I just got word that there are survivors of the war in my port, and that my Kaiser is amongst them. It has demanded my presence immediately. I am sworn to it Marcinus, I must return.”

Marcinus closed its eyes and smiled. It was a smile filled with such unbridled joy that my pain increased when I saw it. “Marcinus.” It said, the word slowly. “You called me by my name.” It opened its eyes then and smiled at me. “Gratitude my friend.”

“It is I who should be grateful.” I turned my gaze away from the uspec when staring at it became too hard. “Shall we drink?” I offered. “To celebrate our last night together.”

Marcinus nodded. “Please.” It stretched its hand out towards the table.

I walked over to that table and picked up the pitcher of chilled wine. With my back to Marcinus, I pulled out the vial with the remaining pellets of loony and put them all into one of the goblets. I poured chilled wine into two goblets and took them over to Marcinus.

Marcinus trusted me so completely that it did not even question the drink that I gave to it. “I will go with you!” Marcinus declared.


“To Mugakute. I will ask mater for troops to help another Uspecipyte Kaiser in need, and it will grant it. You are no longer alone Nebud. As long as I live, you will always have a friend in me.”

The ache I felt in my chest returned. “Gratitude Marcinus.”

The uspec smiled again, and then it tipped its glass in a toast to me. I almost stopped it from drinking the loony. Almost, but it had to be done. It was the only way to save Marcinus’ life.

Marcinus downed the liquid in the cup. That was the uspec’s way, I realized, whenever it chose to drink, it drank fully. As soon as the cup was empty, the goblet slipped from Marcinus’ hand and fell onto the floor. Marcinus tipped over. I dropped my filled goblet and reached out to grab the uspec.

I lay it down, resting its head on the pillow.

It could not move. I saw the pain in its eyes, the betrayal, but it could not speak, and so it said nothing. It simply stared at me. The hurt in the eyes that stared at me caused me more pain than any wound I’d ever received in a battle.

I turned my back on Marcinus. I reached underneath my neckcloth for one of my scales, and then I turned back around, the scale in my hand. Marcinus’ eyes fell on the scale, and then rose back to my face.

It seemed like the swan finally understood my intentions, because at that moment, I saw a lit okun form on the floor of the room, and inch towards me.

I did not know how to control the okun, but I knew the language of pain, and so I reached out to it. I felt that emptiness, the gulf of pain, the desire the okun had to speak, but with the lit okun it was so much more intense. If I let myself, I would be lost in this okun as I’d become in the other. I had to anchor myself to something.

I chose Marcinus.

I don’t know what the lit okun sensed when it communicated with my pain, but it stopped moving towards me and instead crept back to the swan. I had never seen anything like it before. The okun climbed up the bed post and crept over the surface of the bed. It formed a bubble around the swan, trapping it within. The swan could not move.

I sat on the bed by Marcinus.

My hand shook as I rose the scale to its center eye. I pulled my hand back then, questioning my own ability to do the simple task. Marcinus stared at me. It was too weak to do anything, too afflicted by the polluted emotions to defend itself. But its gaze proved to be more lethal than its sword.

Marcinus’s eye.

The voice in my head prompted. I took a deep breath and then I looked Marcinus in the eye, the very one I was about to steal. “Forgive me my friend.” I said, before putting the scale into the eye socket. I felt Marcinus’ pain once the scale went in, but the amount of loony it had imbibed kept it from being able to utter a cry of pain. I wished in that moment that it could know that I had never before regretted causing another pain. I had been called ‘my friend’, by so many, but I had never thought of another uspec as my friend. Not until Marcinus.

I scooped the eye out of the socket, and placed it into the bottle of okun I’d hidden in a pocket in my belt. Only the soul of a spectrum could keep the eye alive. I knew it was a bad idea to put it in my socket right then, not when the last time I’d gained new eyes, I’d found myself knocked unconscious.

I stood to my full height and then I did something foolish. I reached behind me and undid the neckcloth. I let it fall down, so that Marcinus could see what I truly was. I cannot say why I did this, why I was sudden filled with the urge to let Marcinus see that I was irira. But, I knew that I would never see this uspec again, and I thought it at least deserved honesty from me. Showing it that I was irira was the most honest thing that I could do.

I stabbed the scale back into my neck so that it would grow back, and then I returned the neckcloth and walked away.

The lit okun evaporated, releasing the swan, before I left Marcinus’ room.

The fog did not need a key to allow passage out of the room, it only needed to sense life. I put my hand on the fog and it turned translucent, granting me passage. It hardened behind me, and I was back in the hallway, back facing Manus.

“It is done.” I said to Manus.

“Where is the eye?” Manus asked in response.

“It is done.” I stated again. The eye was in a bottle of okun in my belt, but I thought it best not to mention that.

“You did not take it?” Manus shook its head. “I do not understand you.” It paused then. “I can kill you, right now.” It said. “You’ve taken the eye, and so Marcinus will live, but you can die.”

I nodded, exhausted and grief stricken from the hurt that I had caused my only uspec friend.

“But I do not believe in wasting valuable life.” Manus stated. “You will be rewarded. You will come back tomorrow, you will be here for the naming ceremony, and after it is done, I will give you ten pieces of worth. You will also have my assurance that when I am Kaiser, you will have position and influence in this port. You will be given land with the made nobles so that you can always remain here to protect Marcinus. You will come back tomorrow.”

“I will.” I lied.

“I know.” Manus stated. “Your affection for Manus is written plainly on your face. You will not be able to leave it, not now.”

“Yes, imperial one.”

It flicked its fingers in dismissal, and I walked away.

I did not see faces.

In my current state, I was surprised when I made it back to the entry bubble. I did not know that betrayal could sting this much, that hurting another could make me feel much more pain than the uspec did.

When I returned to my suite it was empty.

I was empty.

My mission was done, the voice in my head gone, replaced by a new impulse, an overwhelming urge to claim the eye.

I took the bottle out of my belt and opened it. I stared at the soaru eye. The compulsion to possess it became blinding. I welcomed that compulsion because it chased away the pain of seeing the hurt in Marcinus’ face. I pulled the eye out of the bottle and placed it into an empty eye socket on the right of my face, the one above the imp eye.

As soon as the eye went into my eye socket, white light blinded me, plain exploded in my head, and I lost consciousness.


Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by Madosky112(m): 4:32am On Sep 07
Lovely update.Nebud rebooting.
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by lukfame(m): 5:57am On Sep 07
Thanks for the update. Finally!!! Nebud has Marcinus's eye. I really wish it was long like last week update. But it's still good anyways. More pen to your ink.
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by Botaflica(m): 6:07am On Sep 07
I like that choice of words NEBUD REBOOTING... Thanks for the update. It really felt like betrayal for Nebud now but I do not think Nebud should feel that sad but instead focus its energy on being able to save Marcinus. Another thing is that if Nebud had decided to tell Marcinus earlier, he would never believe him coz he has enormous respect and trust for his brother Manus.
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by tunjilomo(m): 7:26am On Sep 07
This is really wow.
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by cassbeat(m): 8:50am On Sep 07
Wow.... The pains of it all... Wednesday please come quick...
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by barag(f): 2:12pm On Sep 07
I can almost feel Marcinus' pains. I hope it understands and forgives Nebud. As to never seeing Marcinus again, I dpubt it. I don't think Nebud is leaving anytime soon. My thoughts though.
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by Fazemood(m): 7:00pm On Sep 07
A very heart touching scene, Nebud has gotten what it was demanded of, I hope in the future Marcinus will come to know the reason behind Nebud's supposed betrayal.

Didn't know when I finished today's update, be like I am the one acting Nebud.

Obehid, how powerful will Nebud become now it has taken the eye? I hope it is now strong enough to chlenge fajarhomo?
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by decoderdgenius: 12:11am On Sep 08
A very heart touching scene, Nebud has gotten what it was demanded of, I hope in the future Marcinus will come to know the reason behind Nebud's supposed betrayal.

Didn't know when I finished today's update, be like I am the one acting Nebud.

Obehid, how powerful will Nebud become now it has taken the eye? I hope it is now strong enough to chlenge fajarhomo?
Fajarhomo? It sounds like aeons ago. Its just a pleasure seeing Nebud grow. The suspense is actually lethal. Couldn't we buy the book? I'm going crazy here. Help me!
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by chris99(m): 9:14am On Sep 08
nice update man
Re: The Marked: In The Spectral Existence (A Stand-alone Fantasy Fiction Novella) by cherriex(f): 10:40am On Sep 08
I think in the end Nebud will kill fahjaramoh,discover there are more irirras in disguise and put an end to the killing of irirras.1 worth for me cheesy cheesy

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