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Marjolein WP by mindflenzing Marjolein WP by mindflenzing
Marjolein WP by mindflenzing (print image)

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*Edit* There was one little detail in the linework of the face that started to bother me the night after I posted it. That detail just looked out of place with the other linework and eventually started driving me crazy so I removed it. In my most recent edit I finally fixed the shield. I had a total brainfart about how the handle is positioned and it had been bothering me for months. I also just redid the shading. It had been bothering me for a while and I was mulling over ordering a print so I decided to clean the shading up a bit.

*More Edit* In addition to redoing the shield (again) It was bothering me that the lineart was too pixelated so I redid the lines. While doing so I decided to redo the eyes, fix the plate on her right leg, and repaint things since I have a new brush that looks good for hair. I made the terrible mistake of printing a copy of this pic to post in my cubicle so things just started bothering me.

*More Edit Part D'eux* The eyes were bugging me so I redid the makeup, changed the pupil size and light on the eyes.

*Even More Edit* Eyes still bugging me, so I went back to a modified version of the original.

Spurred in part by my discussion of armor with :iconhangemhigh13: who is apparently as big a medieval gear geek as I am I decided to depict one of my more heavily armored LFR (D&D 4E organized play) characters in more pragmatic and historically accurate armor while accomplishing something that medieval armor never did, flatter the female form (find any old picture of Joan of Arc or any movie version where the armor was in any way flattering, I challenge you). I also wanted to do a different style of shoulder pads than I normally do. The lower torso armor is completely not historic but then no period armors would allow a knight to bend over since they all had solid plates past the navel.

She's one of my many vaguely French looking female characters with short dark hair and light eyes in armor but I decided that she should actually sound French (why not, I had German, Russian, Chinese, Irish, Scottish, English, and Australian accented characters already). Additionally, I figured she should be pushy. She started off more diplomatic but very quickly began to just intimidate the heck out of people. I got such a kick out of cowing big burly men with an 11 Strength, slightly built, woman under 6ft in height that she just started throwing her (proverbial) weight around all the time. Now she completely acts the self-important noble and has demanded apologies from burgomasters and the heads of merchant consortiums... and gotten them. She is benevolent and offers aid to those in need who cannot help themselves without asking payment but she's left large thuggish demi-human men crying in the fetal position without lifting a hand to them. When shopping for deities I decided to go with the Red Knight (a.k.a. the Lady of Tactics), who is a demi-god under the War god Tempus. Given her high Intelligence, Knightly demeanor, and breadth of knowledge Marjolein would fit nicely as a worshiper of the Red Knight.

Now as to the build, Marjolein was built initially do accomplish one goal. Namely, "kite a paladin mark with at-will attacks". For her mark to mean anything I had to go Charismadin but they can't make ranged basic attacks so I hybridized her with Bard (which also hits off of Charisma) and gave her an encounter heal to make up for the daily heals she was losing while making making it to where she actually had no secondary stat. Being a human Paladin/Bard Hybrid with Paladin Armor Proficiency left her with about the highest armor and non armored defenses of any character I've ever built so I decided to capitalize on this by giving her a ranged and melee at will attack that gives a -2 to attack rolls so that her foes could attack her monstrous defenses at a penalty or attack allies at a -4 and take automatic damage galore. Later, as I began to use her to babysit parties without leaders or defenders or to supplement both I decided to multiclass her with Resourceful Warlord to increase her leader qualities and making her a Paladin/Bard/Warlord. With a Preservation Shield, Stirring Shout, Virtue, and Unicorn's Charge in addition to her Majestic Word I've seen her out heal other leaders in fights and she has gone through whole fights without being hit a single time while being targeted by more than one monster every round. More than that, her fairly balanced stats and Bard of all Trades feat mean that she can assist in basically any skill and she even managed to make a DC23 Thievery check, despite having no dexterity bonus.



D&D, Living Forgotten Realms, Tempus, The Red Knight etc are property of Wizards of the Coast or their respective copyright holders etc.
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:iconarmendangerous:
ArmenDangerous Featured By Owner Mar 17, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I'd love to see a before/after comparison.
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Mar 18, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Before and after the most recent change or the original finished version vs the current one?
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:iconarmendangerous:
ArmenDangerous Featured By Owner Mar 18, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Original vs. Finished
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Mar 18, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Here, [link], is a comparison between the original finished work and the current version.
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:iconarmendangerous:
ArmenDangerous Featured By Owner Mar 19, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks. I can totally see what you're talking about. Did you have a chuckle when you noticed the shield on the wrong angle? ;)
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Mar 19, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
More of a banging of the head on a wall. The only thing that bothered me as much was the low resolution of the lineart. Fortunately I still had the original scan to vectorize and reimport at a higher resolution.
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:iconjeditoby:
jeditoby Featured By Owner Feb 28, 2013
Okay, yeah, the slow-death range in the gut is under-armored, you're right, but the rest of that looks pretty fearsome (and sexy! Nice job!)

That build is hilarious. Not being terribly familiar with the particulars of D&D, I can't follow it all: "Kite a paladin"?) but I get the gist.
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Feb 28, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
With chainmail underneath you aren't really going to get stabbed, and bolts go through plate anyways though it offers less protection from blunt attacks in exchange for the greater mobility. It is hard to find examples of traditional armor designed for women since that was rare and they generally wore men's armor.

The idea behind her build is to "kite" marks. Essentially, she gives you the option of taking a big attack penalty and automatic damage to attack her allies or a small attack penalty to try to hit her crazy high defenses. Plus she has a lot of healing powers that she can use on herself or others so she is a healing/damage denial build who can function equally well at melee or range.
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:iconjeditoby:
jeditoby Featured By Owner Feb 28, 2013
still not getting the term kite. Also, does she give as good as she gets?
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
The basic idea is that a kite is an object on a relatively short tether and with this technique your mark is like the string that holds them together. In 4th Edition all your durable classes with high AC; like Fighters, Paladins, Wardens, etc have the ability to mark enemies. When you mark an enemy they take a -2 penalty to attacks that do not include you as a primary target and typically they allow you to deal damage to them for attacking your allies. Generally this can only be done while in melee range of the target. The paladin's mark can be used on any enemy within 25ft but requires that you either attack the target this turn or end your turn adjacent to them or your mark goes away at the end of your turn instead of the end of your next turn. But paladins don't really have ranged attacks so you end up having to end adjacent or at least starting there to make a melee attack. By hybridizing with Bard you get ranged attacks you can make through your holy symbol and they can be used to validate your mark. Thus the mark tethers the target to you and the limited range for reapplying the mark next turn tethers you close to the target, not unlike the string of a kite.

She does average damage for a non striker class but she can take it as well as most defenders and heal as well as most leaders in addition to being a crazy skill monger which makes her very good at rounding out striker heavy tables or just large tables where there tends to be insufficient healing and damage sopping.
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:iconjeditoby:
jeditoby Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2013
I need to read up on my D&D books. That just sounds awesome. I wasn't sure I read your previous stuff right and this confirms it. A much stronger character than I thought originally.
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Given that Living Forgotten Realms modules tended to be somewhat vicious to begin with, were always run high tier regardless of the party level, scale up for larger parties in ways that strongly favor the DM, and tended to feature groups that did not balance well with each other, I found it best to build characters who can pull a lot more than their own weight.

I was starting to think my 4th Ed builds were totally broken. Then I started playing Pathfinder and remembered how much more broken my 3rd Ed builds were. My 2nd level Tiefling Ranger took a 7th level Wizard from full HP to 1 HP in a single round and at 3rd level she beat a 7th level Magus (which is a grossly powerful and rather durable melee caster class) alone.
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:iconarmendangerous:
ArmenDangerous Featured By Owner Feb 20, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I'm still impressed by this one. You do armour so well. The shading in particular is fantastic. Just had to stop by and comment again. :)
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks. I like this one enough to have print in my room. Of course, after getting the print I noticed a mistake in the armor on the right thigh. This was after making a shirt out of the design and then noticing that I had the shield angled wrong. I really should start looking at new work through a mirror before doing anything involving money.

That being said. Either today or sometime in the next week or so I plan on updating the pic. I wanted to fix the armor, see if I could re-import the lineart in a higher resolution, and redo the hair with my new brush tool. All so I can torture myself every time I see an older version of the pic. Have I mentioned that I am nuts?
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:iconarmendangerous:
ArmenDangerous Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
If you're nuts, then so am I. I go back and fix my stuff way too much.

To your point, I find that horizontally flipping an image in Illustrator or Photoshop is helpful. You notice new things from a different perspective.

I say you leave it and move on. Do a new version of her.
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I have some new stuff but its on a larger sketch pad which is too big for my scanner so I kinda torn on what to do (especially since the scanner is fairly new and they don't make consumer grade scanners designed for large images.

If I was unhappy with the linework I would but it is more little things bothering me about a picture that I otherwise really like. I might do a new pic of her at some point but since my local LFR group disbanded I no longer player her and I feel more inspired to draw characters whom I am actively playing. Painting and editing does not take nearly the spark that the linework does.
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:iconarmendangerous:
ArmenDangerous Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Got a webcam? I usually take pictures of my pad with Photo Booth.
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I have a digital camera. I supposed I could get a decent pic if I use my tripod and maybe borrow some reflectors.
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:iconzousha:
Zousha Featured By Owner Oct 14, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Fantastic picture and description. I actaully mistook her for the Paizo-created deity Iomedae (seriously, your character looks so much like her, it's a scary coincidence!)
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Oct 14, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Glad you like it. It took a crazy amount of work to design the armor. I wouldn't know about Iomedae since Pathfinder is the only version of D&D I've never played. Looking at a picture of the character you mentioned they both have short black hair, red capes, sword & board, and metal armor with round knee pads but those aren't exactly uncommon.

The plate is part Gouri from Slayers on the top, part Dragon Age Origins on the bottom, the elbow and knee guards are Warhammer Fantasy Dark Elves, but the rest of the design was pretty much patterned on various types of European armors (which I have various reference books on account of being a former medieval warfare dork). I'm fairly happy with the design though looking back at it the lower part of the field plate does not have enough attachment points to sit securely around the hips. The metal part really needed to wrap all the way around with a much larger part in the center. Oh well, live and learn.
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:iconzousha:
Zousha Featured By Owner Oct 15, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
I didn't say the similarities were a BAD thing. I was just saying it's an interesting coincidence. Jeanne D'Archetype and all that.

[link]
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Oct 15, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
She's more the Lady of War archetype. Also, darn you for tricking me into visiting TV Tropes! *Sobbs and clicks several more links*
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:iconzousha:
Zousha Featured By Owner Oct 15, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
MWAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!:mwahaha:
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Oct 15, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
When it was all said and done I lost about 3 hours which I was planning on using to procrastinate writing material for the game I'm running on Thursday.
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:iconzousha:
Zousha Featured By Owner Oct 15, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
You're lucky to have a game. Between two jobs, I never really have time. :(
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Oct 15, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Luckier to not be the only person GMing it for once.
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(1 Reply)
:iconarmendangerous:
ArmenDangerous Featured By Owner Sep 5, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Oh yes!

Well done with the armor. Has anyone ever told you that you have a knack for fantasy? You must play RPG's or something! :P

But seriously, very nice. The movement in the hair is a nice touch.
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Sep 5, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Its almost like I've been steeped in fantasy and medieval history since I grew out of Dinosaurs. This is probably my Dad's fault for reading me Tolkien as a kid and they running AD&D for me after we ran out of Tolkien.

I wasn't sure what to do with the hair other than the bob but when I decided to billow the cape I had to do something with the hair too.
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:iconjacob-cross:
Jacob-Cross Featured By Owner Sep 5, 2012
Nice
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Sep 5, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Glad you like it. Its tricky making a full suit of armor not look chunky (since it naturally kinda is).
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:iconjacob-cross:
Jacob-Cross Featured By Owner Sep 5, 2012
Indeed <3
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:iconjmsnooks:
jmsnooks Featured By Owner Feb 5, 2011  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Dude that's a pretty sweet design.
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Feb 5, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks.
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:iconjmsnooks:
jmsnooks Featured By Owner Feb 5, 2011  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Must be a strong woman to wear all that metal though. A normal human woman couldn't be effective with that much additional weight.
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Feb 5, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
She's strong enough to carry about a hundred pounds of gear without being encumbered. Which makes her strong, but not strong for an adventurer. But in 4th Ed, heroes are more like comic book heroes or movie heroes than gritty realistic heroes. She's definitely not strong enough to effectively climb and jump in it.
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:iconjmsnooks:
jmsnooks Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2011  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
makes sense
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:iconhangemhigh13:
hangemhigh13 Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2011
I actually like that a lot. Nice detail on the armor and the face is cute. Much better than usual, we should have more of these discussions, if this is the result they yield :)

Also the armor looks practical. Very very well done :)
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Its way more detail than I've done on armor in a while but I figured what the heck. I had been trying to design armor for her since Christmas and since I'd sunk that much time, what's another hour or so of pencils and inking.

Thanks. Bendy torsos required anachronistic armor designs but other than that its very much the kind of armor I used to draw all the time back when I played AD&D and D&D 2nd edition.
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:iconhangemhigh13:
hangemhigh13 Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2011
No, bendy torsos require less armor in mid-torso area - much like the armors worn by horse-based peoples (Magyars, Bulgarians, Mongols etc.) with horse archers - chainmail with a single plate worn over the breast area etc.

As I said - I really like it. And anachronism is not an issue if you're designing plate armor - by the time it appeared for broad usage you'd be able to find(and incorporate) any previous armor ideas.
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Good idea. The only non-western European cavalry armor I looked at was Polish and those were all museum pieces that did not include lower body armor so I couldn't really tell where it was going.

Its more an issue of incorporating designs that had never existed at that point than were no longer in use. But in a fantasy setting you can hand-wave that kind of stuff since they have mechanical and medical technology more than 500 years before its time.
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:iconhangemhigh13:
hangemhigh13 Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2011
I remember reading that steppe peoples had only armor up to mid torso, and it was hide armor, worn over the mail shirt. The interesting thing was, that Bulgarians reportedly had chain and scale armor around 680 AD. I always imagined their armor as American Football hide armor. The idea, as I understood it, was to grant them flexibility in the hips, because horse archers shoot arrows while retreating and plate armor would be heavy and, as a whole, pointless for such skirmishing tactics. So I always handle plate armor this way - I leave the lower back "unplated", revealing the underlying scale or chain, just as you did.
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Jan 23, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Very interesting. Makes perfect sense though.
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:iconhangemhigh13:
hangemhigh13 Featured By Owner Jan 23, 2011
Sure, and if you have the historical background for that there's nothing stopping you from doing it. As I said - if your civilization got as far as Plate you can incorporate any previous designs as you see fit.
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Jan 24, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
That's assuming that the armor reflects a real world design that was known in Western Europe. My design was a hodgepodge of real and fantasy designs from around the world that got blended until they looked like a halfway coherent whole.
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:icontheubbergeek2:
theubbergeek2 Featured By Owner Jan 20, 2011
Cormyr, I bet - the vague feudal kingdom equivalent (or as it used to be)
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Jan 20, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thought about it but went Waterdeep because Diplomacy is the #1 most used skill in all of LFR modules and if you want to make Diplomacy checks on a regular basis you must speak Common, Elven, and Draconic (I have not yet encountered a module where you could read text in any other language or speak to any creature in a different language). Cormyr gives you a bump to Insight which is a very uncommonly skill (though not as much as Thievery or Dungeoneering).
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:icontheubbergeek2:
theubbergeek2 Featured By Owner Jan 20, 2011
Hummmm

You seems to be a 'tactician stats' player, not this is a bad thing in itself, mind you
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I've had defenders fight elite and solo monsters for 30+ rounds (yes, the rest of my party sucked that much). I've had DMs recharge 6 and 5,6 recharge powers for half a dozen consecutive rounds, crit an average or 1.5 times a round the whole module, the entire party miss for 10 rounds straight, even put out well over 100 HP worth of healing in a single combat only to have the party nearly get TPK'd, played in parties with no leader or defender, no strikers or defenders, and almost never have a controller worth his salt, I've played 1-4 modules where the entire party was taking between 10 and 25 HP of damage per round on anything but a 1, ones where half the party is blinded/dominated/stunned every round by monster at will powers, and much much more. As a DM, I used to make it my hobby to beat the party within an inch of their lives with the lowest challenge level encounters I could muster by abusing monster combos, powers, terrain, etc and as a player I've crushed encounters by the end of the second round before. I'm both a min/maxer and a solid tactical player and many times before that has meant the difference between life and death for the party. The icing on the cake is that I can also roleplay characters better than most and fully justify my heinous builds with story.
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:icontheubbergeek2:
theubbergeek2 Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2011
Aweome, and this said truely. :)
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:iconmindflenzing:
mindflenzing Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks. As a Grognard who goes back to AD&D and the horrible deathtraps of the Gygaxian age I've learned to do whatever it takes to survive.
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