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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
5318 Posts

Posted - 09 Nov 2020 :  21:27:39  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Sooo, battle of Jerrod's Stone.

Supposedly Arakon gathers a band of mercenaries to take over somewhere. I've got two issues with that. There isnt anywhere to gather mercenaries from in any great number (especially before the birth of the Ten Towns), and there isnt anywhere else to conquer nearby (any troop movement in this climate would see you lose huge numbers of troops).

So what if Arakon actually gathered an army of giants and orc and goblinoids as mercenaries. Perhaps his goal was to carve out a piece of land from the Reghedmen territory, i'm thinking that Kelvin's Cairn was probably the true goal. The enclave of Ythryn found the Spindle in the Sea of Moving Ice (which was an artefact from Ostoria) so mayhaps Icewind Dale was once part of Ostoria and full of giant stuff, it makes sense that they would live in Kelvin's Cairn.


The barbarians fight and defeat Arakon's forces, so he opens a gate to hell and fiend a plenty start to pour through. One of these fiends is Thruun. Raag Jerrod sacrifices himself, Arakon flees, gate is closed.
Thruun survives and is too difficult to kill permanently, so the shaman of all the tribes work great magic to bind him to the land (each cutting off their own hand as sacrifice). Anyone who places a hand on each of the stones may call upon Thruun to hunt and kill a single target, but then Thruun is free and must be killed to put him back in the stones.


I think in the aftermath of Arakon, the giant and goblinoid mercs retake Kelvin's Cairn for themselves and cause the Reghedmen problems for years, it also alters their migration patterns permanently. After the Reghedmen defeat the giants and goblinoids again they treat the Ten Towns as a sacred place but no longer drive the herds through here (which would be a nice place for them with the water and volcanic heat).


Much before this date in the -2000 DR ish timeline i reckon the Reghedmen defeated one of the last remnants of Ostoria led by the giant whose name is remembered as Kelvin (need a good giantish name that renders phonetically as Kelvin).

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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
5318 Posts

Posted - 12 Nov 2020 :  21:39:56  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Up to the followers of Auril in Legacy of the Crystal Shard. They supposedly have created an icy black tower in the Sea of Moving Ice, made from the Black Ice left behind by the Crystal Shard.


However, looking at Hedrun the new Chosen of Auril got me wondering what happened to the old one and then i researched Iyraclea a little bit and came across one of her agents in Jhothun. I found the below bits interesting

quote:
Somewhere in the Endless Ice Sea, nestled in a frozen valley carved from solid ice, a glorious city of graceful crystal towers once stood


quote:
In this time of distant memory, Jhothūn's lords ruled all the cold places of Faerūn, from the Sea of Moving Ice in the west to the Great Ice Sea in the east.


Now i know Rime of the Frost Maiden introduces bits of Ostoria in there, specifically the Spindle which was supposedly recovered from the Sea of Moving Ice.

So what if the Tower of the Ice Witch was actually a remnant of lost Ostoria, restored by Hedrun.

It also begs the question about Iyraclea's goals, she had an agent in lost Jhothun (in the Endless Ice Sea), and lived in the Great Glacier herself. If she was actually interested in Ostoria (perhaps something from Ostoria was hidden in Myth Ondath) then she would definitely have agents in Icewind Dale looking for bits of lost Ostoria.


quote:
Aided by the qorrash, they mastered great magic, inuring themselves to the unending winter of their homeland, shaping the weather itself to their liking, and -- most relevant to the matter at hand -- joining the three great provincial cities of this empire to its capital, Jhothūn.


The fact that Ostoria appears to have perfected weather related magics as well as portal magic could be a good reason for Iyraclea to search for Ostoria artefacts, especially since she wants to plunge the world into an ice age (if you believe the caliph augeries in Empires of the Shining Sea).


One thing i found most curious about Iyraclea was that she is listed as an evil outsider even though she is supposed to be a human wizard from halruaa that has been active for nearly a millennia. Is that race listing as a result of her 3e classes (druid heirophant i think) or is it a clue to her true origin as some kind of masquerading devil lord that fled to Halruaa when Netheril fell and wanted to get back north to find lost magics of Ostoria (in the High Ice, then the Great Glacier, then anywhere else a portal connects).

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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
5318 Posts

Posted - 13 Nov 2020 :  18:53:54  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Why not make the Tower of Ice be the place that the Netherese retrieved the Spindle from. Perhaps the Spindle was part of the weather transformation magic, it requires the other Spindles to be in place in similar obelisks across the realms.

When the Netherese tried to activate the Spindle it tried to drain all the magic from the enclave to change the weather. Perhaps it kickstarted some kind of mini ice age or mini thaw in the region.

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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
34137 Posts

Posted - 13 Nov 2020 :  19:40:38  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Gary Dallison


One thing i found most curious about Iyraclea was that she is listed as an evil outsider even though she is supposed to be a human wizard from halruaa that has been active for nearly a millennia. Is that race listing as a result of her 3e classes (druid heirophant i think) or is it a clue to her true origin as some kind of masquerading devil lord that fled to Halruaa when Netheril fell and wanted to get back north to find lost magics of Ostoria (in the High Ice, then the Great Glacier, then anywhere else a portal connects).



She was previously a human... And she died during the Rage of Dragons.

If she's back and non-human, then the easy fix is to say Auril reincarnated her.

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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
5318 Posts

Posted - 13 Nov 2020 :  19:59:17  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I'm pretty sure she's still dead. The implication from the caliph surgeries is that people with her eye colour might be possessed of some godly power.

No reason she cant appear human and yet be something else as well (possessed, permanent transformation, or just plain unreliable narrator)

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Delnyn
Senior Scribe

USA
394 Posts

Posted - 14 Nov 2020 :  15:39:29  Show Profile Send Delnyn a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The outsider status for Iryaclea is a 3.x edition effect. Iryaclea's stats include 5 levels in the Divine Disiple prestige class, which grants the outsider creature type. For the record, her levels are Cleric 15/Hierophant 5/Divine Disicple 5.

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Gary Dallison


One thing i found most curious about Iyraclea was that she is listed as an evil outsider even though she is supposed to be a human wizard from halruaa that has been active for nearly a millennia. Is that race listing as a result of her 3e classes (druid heirophant i think) or is it a clue to her true origin as some kind of masquerading devil lord that fled to Halruaa when Netheril fell and wanted to get back north to find lost magics of Ostoria (in the High Ice, then the Great Glacier, then anywhere else a portal connects).



She was previously a human... And she died during the Rage of Dragons.

If she's back and non-human, then the easy fix is to say Auril reincarnated her.

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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
5318 Posts

Posted - 14 Nov 2020 :  15:53:53  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Thought it might be something like that, cheers for the rules check, its been a looong time since i've looked at 3e

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George Krashos
Master of Realmslore

Australia
6004 Posts

Posted - 15 Nov 2020 :  00:58:33  Show Profile Send George Krashos a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Gary Dallison


One thing i found most curious about Iyraclea was that she is listed as an evil outsider even though she is supposed to be a human wizard from halruaa that has been active for nearly a millennia. Is that race listing as a result of her 3e classes (druid heirophant i think) or is it a clue to her true origin as some kind of masquerading devil lord that fled to Halruaa when Netheril fell and wanted to get back north to find lost magics of Ostoria (in the High Ice, then the Great Glacier, then anywhere else a portal connects).



She was previously a human... And she died during the Rage of Dragons.

If she's back and non-human, then the easy fix is to say Auril reincarnated her.



She became an exarch in 4E - see Brian James' article in Dragon #367.

-- George Krashos

"Because only we, contrary to the barbarians, never count the enemy in battle." -- Aeschylus
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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
5318 Posts

Posted - 18 Nov 2020 :  21:11:01  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Cheers George, i looked up that article but was disappointed to find it contained nothing more than she became an exarch.

On to other things. The Plesiosaur in Maer Dualdon as detailed in Rime of the Frostmaiden. Its awakened recently but doesnt say when it first arrived.

Given the general temperature of the region i'd be tempted to say a Plesiosaur shouldnt be able to live here, its just too cold. But the Ten Towns is a volcanic hotspot so the depths of Maer Dualdon might be warm enough to support a Plesiosaur.

However, a single warm lake is not enough to support an ecosystem including many plesiosaurs that have survived over millennia from the time of the dinosaurs in Faerun. So the Plesiosaur must have arrived by chance or by design.

Its slightly possible there could be watery tunnels in the depths of Maer Dualdon, but they would lead into the frozen environs and so be too cold.

Which means someone put the dinosaur there. The question is who, and for what purpose. Initial thoughts are the Arcane Brotherhood put it there, hoping it would do significant damage to the fishing and scrimshaw busines so that they, or one of their local agents could be hired to deal with the monster and gain huge popularity, perhaps enough to become Speaker and thereby control the entire scrimshaw trade of a town.

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cpthero2
Master of Realmslore

USA
1738 Posts

Posted - 18 Nov 2020 :  21:23:51  Show Profile  Visit cpthero2's Homepage Send cpthero2 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Great Reader Dallison,

quote:
Given the general temperature of the region i'd be tempted to say a Plesiosaur shouldnt be able to live here, its just too cold. But the Ten Towns is a volcanic hotspot so the depths of Maer Dualdon might be warm enough to support a Plesiosaur.


As it turns out, Plesiosaur' had a metabolic advantage that allowed them to survive in very cold environments:

quote:
During the Mesozoic era (between 200 and 65 million years ago), when dinosaurs roamed the continents, fearsome predatory reptiles such as ichthyosaurs, plesiosaurs and mosasaurs reigned over the oceans. How did these large marine reptiles regulate their temperature? This question, linked to body temperature and thermoregulation processes, is essential in deciphering the feeding, ecology and evolution strategies of these now disappeared vertebrates. (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/06/100614093341.htm)


That's pretty amazing though to consider such a creature, and an awakened one at that, living in such an environment!

Best regards,




***EDITED: Screwed up on the syntax.


Higher Atlar
Spirit Soaring

Edited by - cpthero2 on 18 Nov 2020 21:27:39
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
34137 Posts

Posted - 18 Nov 2020 :  22:20:23  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Gary Dallison

Cheers George, i looked up that article but was disappointed to find it contained nothing more than she became an exarch.

On to other things. The Plesiosaur in Maer Dualdon as detailed in Rime of the Frostmaiden. Its awakened recently but doesnt say when it first arrived.

Given the general temperature of the region i'd be tempted to say a Plesiosaur shouldnt be able to live here, its just too cold. But the Ten Towns is a volcanic hotspot so the depths of Maer Dualdon might be warm enough to support a Plesiosaur.

However, a single warm lake is not enough to support an ecosystem including many plesiosaurs that have survived over millennia from the time of the dinosaurs in Faerun. So the Plesiosaur must have arrived by chance or by design.

Its slightly possible there could be watery tunnels in the depths of Maer Dualdon, but they would lead into the frozen environs and so be too cold.

Which means someone put the dinosaur there. The question is who, and for what purpose. Initial thoughts are the Arcane Brotherhood put it there, hoping it would do significant damage to the fishing and scrimshaw busines so that they, or one of their local agents could be hired to deal with the monster and gain huge popularity, perhaps enough to become Speaker and thereby control the entire scrimshaw trade of a town.



It's possible that it could be a one-off survivor from when the local environ was different.

Maybe the area used to be much warmer, during the time of the sarrukh, and one of them did something that allowed this one dinosaur to survive.

It could have been that several survived initially, but died out over the millennia... Or it could be that there are more of them tucked away nearby, but still in stasis.

Really going wild here -- what if there's an underwater cavern that was a sarrukh workshop? Several plesiosaurs could have been kept in stasis, in this magically-warmed cavern. The magic is beginning to fade, though, so one of them woke up.

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cpthero2
Master of Realmslore

USA
1738 Posts

Posted - 18 Nov 2020 :  22:24:20  Show Profile  Visit cpthero2's Homepage Send cpthero2 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Master Rupert,

quote:
Really going wild here -- what if there's an underwater cavern that was a sarrukh workshop? Several plesiosaurs could have been kept in stasis, in this magically-warmed cavern. The magic is beginning to fade, though, so one of them woke up.



I actually like that one the most. It sounds by far the most fun! Something to connect the two times together sounds pretty interesting. It has been awakened though, I would imagine it would be quick and easy to get to the bottom of that mystery! If it was from a Sarrukh workshop, the things it could share!

Best regards,





Higher Atlar
Spirit Soaring
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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
5318 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2020 :  21:13:39  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Ta for the bit about Plesiosaurs.

I'm not convinced about the sarrukh lab, as far as i'm aware there is mention of them not being able to survive too far north because of the cold, and that Thaymount / Old Owl Well is the limit of their territory north.
Thus far i've not seen any indication of any sarrukh presence in Icewind Dale, not even any lizardmen which is usually a good indicator of former sarrukh presence.

The Spine of the World has always seemingly been cold (although not necessarily glacial). Ostoria had troubles with the climate here.

I normally use the creator races but this region should be ancient giant territory, its part of the ancestral heart of Ostoria, and there are mentions of giant ruins around here.

So while i could put a sarrukh lab underneath (it would still be a stretch to imagine a single lake could maintain 30000 years of plesiosaurs surviving here without them degenerating due to huge amounts of inbreeding), i think i'm going to have to go with a foreign introduction. It makes sense that the Arcane Brotherhood would want to take secret control of Icewind Dale and extend its territory, then they would have easy access to the giant and netherese artefacts that turn up here.

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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
5318 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2020 :  21:21:48  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Rime of the Frost Maiden has an awful lot of tieflings in it. I counted something like 20 named tieflings, which is an unusually high concentration for an isolated region.

You could argue these tieflings are all foreign visitors coming here for the Knights of the Black Sword (although i've made that organisation part of Icewind Dale's history now), or it could be that Icewind Dale has a resident tiefling population for some reason.

The Legion of the Chimera from Icewind Dale 2 was run by two cambions and home to many half breeds so i presume that includes tieflings (even though they didnt exist in 2e).
Now the events for Icewind Dale 2 are not good, but the history from the Accursed Tower mentions two fiends being summoned by Damien Morienus and i already made the link between those two and Belhifet and Yxunomei (the fiends from Icewind Dale 1).
Belhifet was the father of Isair and Madae (founders of the Legion of the Chimera) so it is possible that he fathered a lot of children on many beings before he was dealt with (or before he left for elsewhere). There are a few shaman and unexplained powers among the Reghedmen and dwarves in Icewind Dale so that could be down to demonic taint.

Thus tieflings are a legacy of Damien Morienus and the fiends he summoned.

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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
34137 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2020 :  21:49:39  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Gary Dallison

Ta for the bit about Plesiosaurs.

I'm not convinced about the sarrukh lab, as far as i'm aware there is mention of them not being able to survive too far north because of the cold, and that Thaymount / Old Owl Well is the limit of their territory north.
Thus far i've not seen any indication of any sarrukh presence in Icewind Dale, not even any lizardmen which is usually a good indicator of former sarrukh presence.

The Spine of the World has always seemingly been cold (although not necessarily glacial). Ostoria had troubles with the climate here.

I normally use the creator races but this region should be ancient giant territory, its part of the ancestral heart of Ostoria, and there are mentions of giant ruins around here.

So while i could put a sarrukh lab underneath (it would still be a stretch to imagine a single lake could maintain 30000 years of plesiosaurs surviving here without them degenerating due to huge amounts of inbreeding), i think i'm going to have to go with a foreign introduction. It makes sense that the Arcane Brotherhood would want to take secret control of Icewind Dale and extend its territory, then they would have easy access to the giant and netherese artefacts that turn up here.



Ah, but if they were in stasis for all that time, then it's an original batch of them, and the issues of breeding and feeding them are taken out of the equation.

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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
5318 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2020 :  22:01:52  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Stasis could work, and the great thaw could have been the catalyst that unfroze the lab and ended the stasis. But, I'd still want some or any indication of sarrukh presence before placing a lab this far north. I'll keep it in mind in case i find anything sarrukh or other creator race

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cpthero2
Master of Realmslore

USA
1738 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2020 :  23:46:17  Show Profile  Visit cpthero2's Homepage Send cpthero2 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Great Reader Dallison,

quote:
But, I'd still want some or any indication of sarrukh presence before placing a lab this far north. I'll keep it in mind in case i find anything sarrukh or other creator race


I think you may be in luck with that "indication of sarrukh presence". The map at the url below, in the year -34,200DR shows the sarrukh empire of Isstosseffifil appearing to be approximately in the right area that you're looking at.

http://dnd.eizzn.com/

Best regards,




Higher Atlar
Spirit Soaring
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PattPlays
Learned Scribe

201 Posts

Posted - 20 Nov 2020 :  04:42:32  Show Profile  Visit PattPlays's Homepage Send PattPlays a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by cpthero2

Great Reader Dallison,

quote:
But, I'd still want some or any indication of sarrukh presence before placing a lab this far north. I'll keep it in mind in case i find anything sarrukh or other creator race


I think you may be in luck with that "indication of sarrukh presence". The map at the url below, in the year -34,200DR shows the sarrukh empire of Isstosseffifil appearing to be approximately in the right area that you're looking at.

http://dnd.eizzn.com/

Best regards,







^This site was a godsend when I found it first earlier this year. One of my many favored resources!

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cpthero2
Master of Realmslore

USA
1738 Posts

Posted - 20 Nov 2020 :  06:05:50  Show Profile  Visit cpthero2's Homepage Send cpthero2 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Learned Scribe PattPlays,

Agreed. There are several out there that in different ways are definitely powerhouses for Realms lore.

Candlekeep is definitely my favorite for community, and access to amazing sages. The feel of the 'Keep is something quite awesome!

Best regards,




Higher Atlar
Spirit Soaring
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maransreth
Learned Scribe

Australia
125 Posts

Posted - 20 Nov 2020 :  07:01:24  Show Profile Send maransreth a Private Message  Reply with Quote

Books in the Icewind Dale computer game - https://icewinddale.fandom.com/wiki/Category:Books
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cpthero2
Master of Realmslore

USA
1738 Posts

Posted - 20 Nov 2020 :  07:35:10  Show Profile  Visit cpthero2's Homepage Send cpthero2 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Learned Scribe maransreth,

For people that have started their path to the Realms with computer games, that is pretty awesome indeed, that compilation of information there. I didn't even know it existed!

Best regards,




Higher Atlar
Spirit Soaring
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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
5318 Posts

Posted - 20 Nov 2020 :  13:29:57  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The maps on http://dnd.eizzn.com/ come from Brian James' early draft of Grand History of the Realms, they didnt make it into the final version. Its difficult to extrapolate exact positioning for the empires there without any geographic references (and the fact that all the continents are joined up before the Sundering.

Isstosseffifil was centred around the anauroch basin, which is quite a way from the sword coast and Icewind Dale. Looking at later versions of the map in the pre official GHoTR i would guess that Isstosseffifil in -35000 DR actually covers only Anauroch and the High Ice (which wasnt present back then) as far north as the mountains and as far west as the high forest.


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Baltas
Senior Scribe

Poland
795 Posts

Posted - 20 Nov 2020 :  14:45:43  Show Profile Send Baltas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
About Sarrukh and Yxunomei, I wonder if they didn't have a contact.
Yxunomei has a connher also claiming to be very old (older than Toril), which even if we claim as a exaggerated boast, could mean she's old enough to had been active during the Days of Thunder.
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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
5318 Posts

Posted - 21 Nov 2020 :  19:08:03  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The age of a demon doesnt necessarily map to any time in Toril. Yxunomei could have been in the abyss or anywhere else for many many millennia, and only arrived on the realms when she was summoned.

I'm not discounting a link at this time, but given the total absence of sarrukh in icewind dale I'm not sure I'll make any such link between the sarrukh and yxunomei at this time.

Forgotten Realms Alternate Dimensions Candlekeep Archive
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Forgotten Realms Alternate Dimensions: Issue 5
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Baltas
Senior Scribe

Poland
795 Posts

Posted - 21 Nov 2020 :  20:10:20  Show Profile Send Baltas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Well, I more meant as being generally involved with Sarrukh, specifically possibly in what is current North-West Faerun, rather than just precisely ones that could have dwelt (theoretically) in Icewind Dale and it's surroundings, but I get your point.
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