History Main / PyrrhicVictory

23rd Feb '18 5:58:24 PM merotoker
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* ''Manga/YuYuHakusho''

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* ''Manga/YuYuHakusho'' ''Manga/YuYuHakusho'':



** The Attack of the Black Order arc results in an even more pyrrhic victory. Bonus points for happening just after the above pyrrhic victory. They do succeed in repelling the invader (especially the level 4) and stopping Lulu Bell from retrieving the akuma egg but the akumas end up destroying a good part of the facility leading to a relocation, kill many members in both the science section and the security section and the worst is Marie commenting that [[spoiler: with this attack the earl probably wanted to make them understand that he could kill them whenever he wants. This is supported by the last words of the level 4 they had so much trouble to get rid of "Don't act cocky for beating a weakling like me".]]

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** The Attack of the Black Order arc results in an even more pyrrhic victory. Bonus points for happening just after the above pyrrhic victory. They do succeed in repelling the invader (especially the level 4) and stopping Lulu Bell from retrieving the akuma egg but the akumas end up destroying a good part of the facility leading to a relocation, kill many members in both the science section and the security section and the worst is Marie commenting that [[spoiler: with this attack the earl probably wanted to make them understand that he could kill them whenever he wants. This is supported by the last words of the level 4 they had so much trouble to get rid of "Don't act cocky for beating a weakling like me".]]me"]].



** By the end [[spoiler: Nearly EVERYONE on both sides except the 3 main Gundam leads are dead. Although Flit was able to resist going genocidal on the Vegans in the end he'd more or less wasted his whole life on a cause he abandoned in the end, and he died shortly after the war ended. Asemu became a wanted criminal and missed out on his sons entire childhood, and he wasn't able to help Zeheart in the end. Kio got his peace he wanted, but all the Vegans he personally knew and wanted to save all died. In spite of this very bleak outlook the series acts like it was a super happy ending, one reason the ending was not well received by fans]].

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** By the end [[spoiler: Nearly EVERYONE on both sides except the 3 main Gundam leads are dead. Although Flit was able to resist going genocidal on the Vegans in the end he'd more or less wasted his whole life on a cause he abandoned in the end, and he died shortly after the war ended. Asemu became a wanted criminal and missed out on his sons son's entire childhood, and he wasn't able to help Zeheart in the end. Kio got his peace he wanted, but all the Vegans he personally knew and wanted to save all died. In spite of this very bleak outlook the series acts like it was a super happy ending, one reason the ending was not well received by fans]].



* All Might's battle with [[spoiler:All For One]] in ''Manga/MyHeroAcademia'' ends in one for him. All Might is victorious but [[spoiler:his true form is revealed to the world, and he uses up the last bit of One For All during their fight. Forcing him to retire. His opponent All For One meanwhile is locked up for good, but believes that his absence will spur his pupil on to become a stronger villain and feels that he came out ahead.]]

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* All Might's battle with [[spoiler:All For One]] in ''Manga/MyHeroAcademia'' ends in one for him. All Might is victorious but [[spoiler:his true form is revealed to the world, and he uses up the last bit of One For All during their fight. Forcing him to retire. His opponent All For One meanwhile is locked up for good, but believes that his absence will spur his pupil on to become a stronger villain and feels that he came out ahead.]] ahead]].









** During the opening, [[spoiler:the Rebels successfully destroy a First Order Dreadnought, but at the cost of a good part of their fleet, including ''all'' of their bombers, and only after it nukes their main base on D'Qar. Considering their hardware and personnel is already pretty limited to begin with, this is a really bad thing.]]
** It also ends in one of these for [[spoiler:the First Order. They've destroyed a major enemy base and killed most of the Resistance leadership, but have lost in virtually every other sense. The Resistance survived and is setting to work rebuilding, a huge number of soldiers and ships were lost in the [[WhatASenselessWasteOfHumanLife pursuit of a single group of enemies]], and Supreme Leader Snoke is dead, leaving the Order under the [[GeneralFailure inexperienced-at-best leadership of Kylo Ren]]. It's just a step short of a MeaninglessVillainVictory.]]

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** During the opening, [[spoiler:the Rebels successfully destroy a First Order Dreadnought, but at the cost of a good part of their fleet, including ''all'' of their bombers, and only after it nukes their main base on D'Qar. Considering their hardware and personnel is already pretty limited to begin with, this is a really bad thing.]]
thing]].
** It also ends in one of these for [[spoiler:the First Order. They've destroyed a major enemy base and killed most of the Resistance leadership, but have lost in virtually every other sense. The Resistance survived and is setting to work rebuilding, a huge number of soldiers and ships were lost in the [[WhatASenselessWasteOfHumanLife pursuit of a single group of enemies]], and Supreme Leader Snoke is dead, leaving the Order under the [[GeneralFailure inexperienced-at-best leadership of Kylo Ren]]. It's just a step short of a MeaninglessVillainVictory.]]
MeaninglessVillainVictory]].



* ''Literature/MalazanBookOfTheFallen''

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* ''Literature/MalazanBookOfTheFallen''''Literature/MalazanBookOfTheFallen'':



** In book eight, ''Literature/TollTheHounds'', the {{undead}} army of everyone who has ever died since Hood became the God of Death manages to [[spoiler:hold off the forces of Chaos]] long enough, but most of them are destroyed even beyond undeath.

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** In book eight, ''Literature/TollTheHounds'', the {{undead}} TheUndead army of everyone who has ever died since Hood became the God of Death manages to [[spoiler:hold off the forces of Chaos]] long enough, but most of them are destroyed even beyond undeath.



* ''Series/BurnNotice''

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* ''Series/BurnNotice'' ''Series/BurnNotice'':



* The January 2016 Wild Card Playoff Game between the Cincinnati Bengals and the Pittsburgh Steelers did end in embarrassing fashion for the Bengals, who surrendered 30 yards of personal foul penalties on one play in the final minute to hand the Steelers the field position for a chip shot field goal to win 18-16. However, few Steelers fans were celebrating, as the source of the first fifteen personal foul yards was a concussion to star wide reciever Antonio Brown, who was ''knocked unconscious'' from an illegal helmet-to-helmet hit from Bengals linebacker Vontaze Burfict.[[note]]who served a three game suspension the next season for the blatant hit, the most notable in a string of dangerous hits that have come to define his style[[/note]] (the other fifteen came after fellow Bengal Adam "Pac-Man" Jones got into a confrontation with Steelers linebacker coach Joey Porter) Brown wound up being ruled out for the Divisional Round matchup against the Denver Broncos, which combined with a hobbled Ben Roethlisberger (who'd been injured on a hard but legal hit from Burfict earlier in the fourth quarter) and a crippled run game (both star runner Le'Veon Bell[[note]]himself injured in a regular season game after an illegal [[RuleOfThree hit from Burfict]][[/note]] and veteran backup [=DeAngelo=] Williams were already injured, handing run duties to Fitzgerald Toussaint), led to the Steelers losing to the Broncos as their top-ranked defense, free of having to worry about covering Brown, shut down the rest of Pittsburgh's receiving corps as well as what little remained of their run game.

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* The January 2016 Wild Card Playoff Game between the Cincinnati Bengals and the Pittsburgh Steelers did end in embarrassing fashion for the Bengals, who surrendered 30 yards of personal foul penalties on one play in the final minute to hand the Steelers the field position for a chip shot field goal to win 18-16. However, few Steelers fans were celebrating, as the source of the first fifteen personal foul yards was a concussion to star wide reciever receiver Antonio Brown, who was ''knocked unconscious'' from an illegal helmet-to-helmet hit from Bengals linebacker Vontaze Burfict.[[note]]who served a three game suspension the next season for the blatant hit, the most notable in a string of dangerous hits that have come to define his style[[/note]] (the other fifteen came after fellow Bengal Adam "Pac-Man" Jones got into a confrontation with Steelers linebacker coach Joey Porter) Brown wound up being ruled out for the Divisional Round matchup against the Denver Broncos, which combined with a hobbled Ben Roethlisberger (who'd been injured on a hard but legal hit from Burfict earlier in the fourth quarter) and a crippled run game (both star runner Le'Veon Bell[[note]]himself injured in a regular season game after an illegal [[RuleOfThree hit from Burfict]][[/note]] and veteran backup [=DeAngelo=] Williams were already injured, handing run duties to Fitzgerald Toussaint), led to the Steelers losing to the Broncos as their top-ranked defense, free of having to worry about covering Brown, shut down the rest of Pittsburgh's receiving corps as well as what little remained of their run game.



** A villainous example with the Fall of Cadia in the new 13th Black Crusade. Abbadon may have FINALLY defeated the defenders of Cadia (including his {{Archenemy}} and [[MemeticMutation tactical genius CRREEEEEEEDDD]]!), resulting in the planet's destruction and Chaos finally breaking through the 10,000-year stalemate to attack the Imperium ''en masse'' once again, but the thing is he wanted to CONQUER the planet, not destroy it. The Cadian Pylons were highly valuable and the entire reason he was attacking the planet in the first place. With it gone, he "won", but lost the reason he had spent so long waging war against Cadia to begin with.

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** A villainous example with the Fall of Cadia in the new 13th Black Crusade. Abbadon may have FINALLY defeated the defenders of Cadia (including his {{Archenemy}} ArchEnemy and [[MemeticMutation tactical genius CRREEEEEEEDDD]]!), resulting in the planet's destruction and Chaos finally breaking through the 10,000-year stalemate to attack the Imperium ''en masse'' once again, but the thing is he wanted to CONQUER the planet, not destroy it. The Cadian Pylons were highly valuable and the entire reason he was attacking the planet in the first place. With it gone, he "won", but lost the reason he had spent so long waging war against Cadia to begin with.



* ''Franchise/{{Transformers|Generation1}}''

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* ''Franchise/{{Transformers|Generation1}}'' ''Franchise/{{Transformers|Generation1}}'':



* ''WesternAnimation/LooneyTunes''

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* ''WesternAnimation/LooneyTunes'' ''WesternAnimation/LooneyTunes'':



--->'''Batman''': How much is a good night's sleep worth? Now there's a riddle.

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--->'''Batman''': -->'''Batman''': How much is a good night's sleep worth? Now there's a riddle.
18th Feb '18 5:58:06 PM ANTMuddle
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These are common in DarkerAndEdgier series and is one of the defining characteristics of a CrapsackWorld. Compare to MeaninglessVillainVictory. Contrast with PyrrhicVillainy and ShootTheShaggyDog. If the bad outcome of a victory is due to post-victory arrangements rather than victory itself, you may look for WonTheWarLostThePeace. When dealing with {{Eldritch Abomination}}s, this overlaps with BrokeYourArmPunchingOutCthulhu. Contrast XanatosGambit, where "losing" might benefit the planner more than outright victory. Contrast GodzillaThreshold; ''any'' victory will do, and no price is too great to achieve said victory, and TheUnfettered who are the most likely to carry it out.

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These are common in DarkerAndEdgier series and is one of the defining characteristics of a CrapsackWorld. Compare to MeaninglessVillainVictory. Contrast with PyrrhicVillainy (when the bad guys deal with this) and ShootTheShaggyDog. If the bad outcome of a victory is due to post-victory arrangements rather than victory itself, you may look for WonTheWarLostThePeace. When dealing with {{Eldritch Abomination}}s, this overlaps with BrokeYourArmPunchingOutCthulhu. Contrast XanatosGambit, where "losing" might benefit the planner more than outright victory. Contrast GodzillaThreshold; ''any'' victory will do, and no price is too great to achieve said victory, and TheUnfettered who are the most likely to carry it out.
12th Feb '18 8:39:18 AM MoPete
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* ''Series/MarriedWithChildren'': For the most part, even when Al wins, he loses.
** "Born To Walk": Al, having lost his license, and sick of getting no help from his family when they cost him a chance to win money at a horse race, vows to never help his family again, nor for them to help him. The next day, he passes the driving test, but the instructor runs over his foot.
** "Tooth and Consequences": Peg finally gives in to Al's demand and makes an amazing dinner for the family... Which Al can't eat because he had recently taken a trip to the dentist.
** "Just Shoe It": Al gets to star in a shoe commercial, but it's just an excuse for him to get crushed by Ed "Too-Tall" Jones, beaned by a pitch by Steve Carlton, and knocked out by Sugar Ray Leonard. And then he doesn't even get to appear in the commercial, his feet only being shown getting knocked out of the shoes that were being advertised.
** "A Shoe Room With a View": Thanks to Al's efforts, the aerobics studio next to the shoe store gets an attractive trainer, who brings many attractive clients with him. However, since he fell out of a window and was left in a wheelchair, he couldn't look through the holes that were drilled in the shoe store to ogle the attractive women, like his friends were.
7th Feb '18 10:27:41 AM hullflyer
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** During the opening, [[spoiler: Rebels successfully destroy First Order Dreadnought at the cost of good part of their fleet, including all and every bomber, and after it nukes their main base on D'Qar. Considering their hardware and personnel is already pretty limited to begin with, this is a bad thing.]]
** It also ends in one of these for [[spoiler:the First Order. They've destroyed a major enemy base and killed most of the Resistance leadership, but have lost in virtually every other sense. The Resistance survived and is setting to work rebuilding, a huge number of soldiers and ships were lost in the [[WhatASenselessWasteOfHumanLife pursuit of a single group of enemies]], and Supreme Leader Snoke is dead, leaving the Order under the [[GeneralFailure inexperienced-at-best leadership of Kylo Ren]]. It just a step short of a MeaninglessVillainVictory.]]

to:

** During the opening, [[spoiler: [[spoiler:the Rebels successfully destroy a First Order Dreadnought Dreadnought, but at the cost of a good part of their fleet, including all ''all'' of their bombers, and every bomber, and only after it nukes their main base on D'Qar. Considering their hardware and personnel is already pretty limited to begin with, this is a really bad thing.]]
** It also ends in one of these for [[spoiler:the First Order. They've destroyed a major enemy base and killed most of the Resistance leadership, but have lost in virtually every other sense. The Resistance survived and is setting to work rebuilding, a huge number of soldiers and ships were lost in the [[WhatASenselessWasteOfHumanLife pursuit of a single group of enemies]], and Supreme Leader Snoke is dead, leaving the Order under the [[GeneralFailure inexperienced-at-best leadership of Kylo Ren]]. It It's just a step short of a MeaninglessVillainVictory.]]
5th Feb '18 4:36:36 AM ddraco
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** And then ''VideoGame/KingdomHeartsDreamDropDistance'' comes along and makes things worse for them: [[spoiler:Xehanort is still in control of Terra's body, over a decade later, and no-one else knows what happened to the rest of him. Vanitas is still around inside Ven's heart, and all that Ven's sacrifice did was teach Xehanort he'd been going about his X-blade plan all wrong. But it still didn't slow his plans down iepressed and with signs of post-traumatic stress disorder, without mentioning that the Earth Kingdom remains in complete chaos after the queen's assassination and with no clear fix on sight]]. And then, [[spoiler: Kuvira, Su's captain, makes a FaceHeelTurn to stop chaos and reunite the country with a lot of Su's people, which gradually corrupts them. She eventually becomes a dictator. Enter the new BigBad]].

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** And then ''VideoGame/KingdomHeartsDreamDropDistance'' comes along and makes things worse for them: [[spoiler:Xehanort is still in control of Terra's body, over a decade later, and no-one else knows what happened to the rest of him. Vanitas is still around inside Ven's heart, and all that Ven's sacrifice did was teach Xehanort he'd been going about his X-blade plan all wrong. But it still didn't slow his plans down iepressed and with signs of post-traumatic stress disorder, without mentioning that in the Earth Kingdom remains in complete chaos after the queen's assassination and with no clear fix on sight]]. And then, [[spoiler: Kuvira, Su's captain, makes a FaceHeelTurn to stop chaos and reunite the country with a lot of Su's people, which gradually corrupts them. She eventually becomes a dictator. Enter the new BigBad]].slightest.
4th Feb '18 8:28:37 AM gb00393
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** Despite managing to kill Oberyn during the trial by combat, the Mountain is ultimately rendered comatose by Oberyn's poisoned spears and left at the mercy of the torturously pragmatic Qyburn.
1st Feb '18 7:56:22 AM Rytex
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** The War of the Five Kings was never going to be pretty, always was going to be prohibitively expensive and the harrowing of the Riverlands was worse than it strictly needed to be. But, the clean-up needing decades pales beside the fact that [[spoiler: Joffrey and Tywin were killed shortly after, Tyrion is on the run, Cersei is running the Kingdom into the ground and Kevin got killed just as he was trying to fix what he could. Winning only weakened House Lannister]].

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** House Frey, House Bolton, and the Red Wedding. Sure, in the short-term, they are given all of the credit for killing King Robb and decimating the Northern forces in one night, and House Bolton gains control of the North, but Stannis and his armies are coming for the Boltons, the Freys now find themselves the unspoken enemies of almost everyone else in Westeros, and several of their own "allies" are actively working to undermine them, leaving their position more and more precarious. And in the case of the Boltons, [[StupidEvil Ramsay]] isn't helping matters.
** The War of the Five Kings was never going to be pretty, always was going to be prohibitively expensive and the harrowing of the Riverlands was worse than it strictly needed to be. But, the clean-up needing decades pales beside the fact that [[spoiler: Joffrey and Tywin were killed shortly after, Tyrion is on the run, Cersei is running the Kingdom into the ground and Kevin Kevan got killed just as he was trying to fix what he could. Winning only weakened House Lannister]].Lannister]].
** The Battle of Castle Black ends in this for the Night's Watch. Yes, Stannis showed up to save them and Castle Black remains under the Night's Watch's control. However, Stannis soon left to retake the North from the Boltons, meaning that the Night's Watch, already very low on manpower due to the dilapidation of the organization over the centuries, is now ''dangerously'' low on men after the Great Ranging and the battle. In addition, several buildings and constructs were damaged quite badly in the battle, and [[ArcWords winter is coming]], and with it, [[GreaterScopeVillain the Others]] and [[NightOfTheLivingMooks the army of the dead]].
28th Jan '18 7:49:24 PM Trogdor
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* In ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender'', Katara comes across a elderly waterbender named Hama who teaches her on how to improve her Waterbending skills, albeit through questionable methods. Her last lesson is Waterbending's ultimate technique, Bloodbending, where under a full moon the Waterbender can take complete control of his opponent. Katara, of course, is horrified at such a practice and vows not to use it. But when Hama takes control of Aang and Sokka and nearly kills them, Katara has no choice but to use the technique to stop her. Hama laughs at this while she's being carted off by the officials, as she succeeded in making Katara use the technique much to Katara's dismay.

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* ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender'':
**
In ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender'', one episode, Katara comes across a an elderly waterbender named Hama who teaches her on how to improve her Waterbending skills, albeit through questionable methods. Her last lesson is Waterbending's ultimate technique, Bloodbending, where under a full moon the Waterbender can take complete control of his their opponent. Katara, of course, is horrified at such a practice and vows not to use it. But when Hama takes control of Aang and Sokka and nearly kills them, forces them to kill each other, Katara has no choice but to use the technique to stop her. Hama laughs at this while she's being carted off by the officials, as she succeeded in making Katara use the technique much to Katara's dismay.


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** Inverted in ''The Northern Air Temple'', where an invasion from the fire nation on the Northern air temple is successfully prevented after Sokka drops the furnace of a hot air balloon into a gas pocket in a nearby chasm. This causes an explosion that forces the fire nation to retreat, but after this, the hot air balloon has to be abandoned, as it can't increase its altitude without a furnace. This allows the fire nation [[spoiler:to salvage its remains and reverse-engineer it]].
-->'''Qin:''' ''This defeat is the gateway to many victories.''
26th Jan '18 3:11:56 PM Will
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** It also ends in one of these for [[spoiler:the First Order. They've destroyed a major enemy base and killed most of the Resistence leadership, but have lost in virtually every other sense. The Resistence survived and is setting to work rebuilding, a huge number of soldiers and ships were lost in the [[WhatASenselessWasteOfHumanLife pursuit of a single group of enemies]], and Supreme Leader Snoke is dead, leaving the Order under the [[GeneralFailure inexperienced-at-best leadership of Kylo Ren]]. It just a step short of a MeaninglessVillainVictory.]]

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** It also ends in one of these for [[spoiler:the First Order. They've destroyed a major enemy base and killed most of the Resistence Resistance leadership, but have lost in virtually every other sense. The Resistence Resistance survived and is setting to work rebuilding, a huge number of soldiers and ships were lost in the [[WhatASenselessWasteOfHumanLife pursuit of a single group of enemies]], and Supreme Leader Snoke is dead, leaving the Order under the [[GeneralFailure inexperienced-at-best leadership of Kylo Ren]]. It just a step short of a MeaninglessVillainVictory.]]
23rd Jan '18 9:36:10 AM Derkhan
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* The third ''Literature/MalazanBookOfTheFallen'' book, ''Literature/MemoriesOfIce'', has two.
** First the siege of Capustan is lifted when the [[GondorCallsForAid protagonist army arrives]], but the defenders (who are honorable mercenaries) have nearly been killed to the man.
** This trope is used again in the concluding battle where the allied armies of the Malazans and Caladan Brood capture Coral. But a huge percentage of the named characters are killed during this second battle and the army is a shell of it's former self.

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* ''Literature/MalazanBookOfTheFallen''
**
The third ''Literature/MalazanBookOfTheFallen'' book, ''Literature/MemoriesOfIce'', has two.
**
two:
***
First the siege of Capustan is lifted when the [[GondorCallsForAid protagonist army arrives]], but the defenders (who are honorable mercenaries) have nearly been killed to the man.
** *** This trope is used again in the concluding battle where the allied armies of the Malazans and Caladan Brood capture Coral. But a huge percentage of the named characters are killed during this second battle and the army is a shell of it's former self.self.
** In book eight, ''Literature/TollTheHounds'', the {{undead}} army of everyone who has ever died since Hood became the God of Death manages to [[spoiler:hold off the forces of Chaos]] long enough, but most of them are destroyed even beyond undeath.
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