These Hollow Vows Readalong: Day 1

Gorgeous photo by @lifeinlit

Hello everyone!

Its day 1 of our readalong of These Hollow Vows by Lexi Ryan, let’s do this!

Before we start, how is everyone? Who’s excited to start this book? I sure am. 😀

Today, we start from Chapter 1 and we will be reading to the end of Chapter 7! Keep your wits about you, it’s time to go to the Fae Courts. Join me in the comments to chat about it once you’ve finished reading this section.

Please be warned, the following will include spoilers for These Hollow Vows chapters 1-7! Read only if you’ve finished those chapters!

-!SPOILERS!-

So we begin, Brie casually breaking into a vault with all the magic she can use. Gorst seems like a real piece of work with how he makes his wealth, all those contracts… and exhaustion is close to getting her caught. 

She barely managed to get out, phew! Instead of heading home, Brie goes to her friend Nik’s house where she sees Nik’s daughter, Fawn, crying… her time is up on her contract with Gorst and she needs money. Aww Brie gave her some of the money to cover the debt to Gorst.

Jas, Brie’s younger sister brings news of the Seelie court queen opening the portal for humans to come – a human bride for the fae prince. Brie dislikes the faeries and why? Because their mother supposedly went there.. after abandoning them nine years ago.

We meet Sebastian, a mage apprentice. Do we sense a crush, Brie? Looks like he’s off somewhere for his apprenticeship and seems like he knows quite a lot about the faeries. Brie and Jas are short on money to give to Madame V! Brie finally agrees to go to the ball and Jas is in full swing of making them gowns. Sebastian is not happy… ooops. Seems like Brie and Bash have a lot unsaid.

Oh no! Bakken has taken Jas to the faerie traders. 😧

It’s true, Madam V sold Jas to someone in the fae realm, and Brie goes to the one who can give her answers, Bakken. Of course for a price he’ll give her answers- everything costs something.  Madame V sold her to the shadow king, the Unseelie ruler!!! What does he want with Jas?

And for the price of another lock of hair, Brie has a plan of action; go to the Seelie court, find the queen’s hidden portal and enter the Unseelie court to get her sister from the shadow king. Uh-oh.

On to the next problem, Gorst knows someone broke in and they left blood – this is so not good! Brie doesn’t tell Sebastian her plan and he leaves tomorrow. He gave a kiss and an amulet for protection. Brie is shaken awaken… Gorst has found her. She’s on the run and there’s an hour left until the portal opens. Girls are already dressed and lining up – hidden away Brie changes into a dress Nik packed.

The portal has opened and Gorst men’s are close – to cross through Brie has to believe…

Brie is in awe of the castle but she isn’t going to get in looking the way she does. Pretha sees her and helps Brie to get into the castle – magic to change her dress – who is Pretha? 🤔

She’s in the castle and stumbles into a dark haired, silver eyed fae… they dance to avoid her cousins. He’s intrigued by her scar she got in the fire as a child… interesting.  He tells her to hide and for the queen not to see her scar, she unravels the magic on her dress and hides in the shadows… she’s invisible? Omg she just went right through the wall.

Brie manages to find the armorie, and with minutes till midnight the silver eyes fae finds her. How did he managed to follow her.. ahhh! omg he’s from the Court of the Moon – the Unseelie court! He wants to help her, but why? so many questions and with seconds left Brie runs and she’s in. She’s in the Unseelie court and King Mordeus knew she was coming!

King Mordeus didn’t want Jas, he wanted Brie and here she is! he knows she’s a thief and wants her to steal three things from the queen, he’s impressed with her and how she got to the Unseelie court undetected, I mean – kudos to Brie but oh noooooo.

King Mordeus is not happy and using his magic, locks her up. Brie dreams of Jas, a strange story and somehow the silver eyed fae.. He’s willing to help her but she has to find him. A goblin appears to take her back to the King and Brie has reconsidered, she accepts his offer and so the game begins. The first object, a mirror and she must keep the prince close, but who is the prince?

A goblin takes Brie back to the Seelie court and Sebestian is there, dressed up and all with pointy ears… is he fae? 😮

He’s not just fae, he’s the fae prince and brie just kissed him! Brie is shocked, and somehow she’s invisible again and runs. So that’s why the King wanted her, because she already has his trust. Brie notices a familiar face and someone else with glowing red eyes but before she can do anything, she’s unconscious.


And that brings us to the end of today’s chapters! wow, in so little we find out some much. How are you finding it so far? Comment down below and I shall see you all tomorrow for Day 2.

Love,
Shaz

49 thoughts on “These Hollow Vows Readalong: Day 1

  1. Hi Shaz, and everyone else reading!

    I’m pleasantly surprised so far with this book! I have to admit I went in like “I’m kind of over the whole fae thing” but Brie has won me over. I love her determination. I also really like Sebastian and fully called him being a faerie, but dang; he’s the whole PRINCE.

    I am suspect this will be a love triangle kind of book and while I don’t mind those too much, I do hope it doesn’t derail the story from Brie’s quest to rescue Jas as I care way more about that than I do romance, if I’m honest!

    Does anyone else think Brie has faerie blood? It explains her ability to slip through shadows, and why faeries are interested in her…

    (Also, oh my LIFE I hate Madame V. What a nasty piece of work.)

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    1. I had the same thought about Brie’s heritage! It would make a lot of sense and I feel that there are some (perhaps a bit vague) clues that point towards it (like how she wonders why she never heard humans have abilities in Fae lands).

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    2. Yes I think so too! She’s definitely something else; her scar that looks like a sun and moon makes me think there’s some magic at play that we have yet to discover..

    3. I completely agree with you about not wanting the love triangle overshadowing saving her sister!

  2. I really enjoyed the beginning of this book. The author gives you enough to keep up with what is going on but leaves enough to be a mystery in order to get you to keep reading. I like the idea of fairies not being the greatest things in the world. Usually, in other books, they are these awesome beings that everyone wants to be, and I find it refreshing that Brie does not.

    I have the same question though…is Brie a fairy or at least part fae…we shall wait and see!

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    1. Yeah, I feel like she has to be at least somewhat fae, right? Maybe not, but the whole thing with her mom is super vague so far…

  3. I really like this book so far. I love Brie’s fierceness and determination. I hate Madame V with a passion. I always hate stories like this where people mistreat the children of their family members.

    I’m starting to wonder if Brie has some sort of fae heritage with her ability to hide and slip through the shadows in the Seelie court. I was a little surprised that Sebastian was the prince that everyone came to see. I expected him to be fae but not the prince.

    I’m definitely looking forward to seeing where the story goes next.

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  4. This summary of today’s chapters is perfect! And the gif perfectly describes my feelings – I’m gonna have to keep myself in check to avoid reading ahead! (Wishing myself good luck!)

    It has been a while since I read a Fae book, and I am on board. I’m really enjoying the pace, and the writing style makes it an easy read – for me the pages just flew by. While a love triangle isn’t my favourite trope, I’m intrigued by our silver-eyed Fae. Did they say that he was a Prince of the Unseelie Court or did I assume that by myself? (Maybe two Fae princes would be too much, but it could explain why he seems so opposed to Mordeus.)

    As Sebastian was introduced I immediately went to look at the art on the reverse of the book sleeve – and his ears are pointed. With that image, the revelation at the end of today’s reading didn’t really take me by surprise. The Fae or the prince part. But, I want to get to know Ronan. (Basically, I want to get to know both our Fae men – surprise!)

    With how today’s reading ended I’m hopeful that there will be a fair share of adventure, and not just a love triangle. I’m really looking forward to tomorrow’s reading and learning more about this Fae world and the creatures that lurk in it.

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    1. I think we are all a little intrigued by the silver eyed fae aha!

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  5. What a great start!

    The moment Bash gave Brie the necklace I figured he was Prince Ronan, I had already assumed due to the description we got and the picture on the reversible dust jacket.
    The faerie with the silver eyes from the ball and her dreams must be Finn (we know his name from the blurb) and I’m guessing he’s Prince Finnegan, the true ruler of the Unseelie Court. It just seems that way. And somehow the mother must have known the future, what would happen. Why else would she tell the girls the story the night before she left?

    I think the nickname “the Fire Girl” also has more to it than the fact she survived the fire. Her scar and ability to hide in the shadows hint maybe at being a descendant of the fae? She must be the princess of shadows from her mother’s stories. It makes sense.

    Had I not tabbed the sections, I would have continued reading without noticing, the book is so good!

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    1. very true! that nickname has a lot of significance, will be interesting to see how

  6. Hi everyone!

    This will be the first time that I’m actually participating in a read-along, can’t wait!

    I’m already loving this so much! First of all, her name is so pretty; Abriella and Jasalyn seem like such faerie names! I can’t really say that I’m surprised so far, it seemed really obvious that Sebastian would be Ronan, but I still like it nonetheless. Oh and her scar; a sun and moon, really? Lmao, the Seelie court is a sun, the Unseelie court a moon, so I’m guessing she’s some sort of savior or maybe even the daughter of the seelie queen and the shadow king? I don’t know, but that again seems like such an obvious thing XD She has shadow powers, which is really cool, and which is probably also why she can blend into the shadows in the real world when she’s stealing stuff. Can’t wait to see if she has ‘light’ powers too.

    Idk, but I liked the silver eyed guy too; he just reminds me so much of Rhysand from ACOTAR..? He’s definitely Finnian (or Finnas or something like that) – the exiled shadow prince that was mentioned by the goblin, right?

    I was also wondering, is it based on Cinderella? I mean, her aunt and nieces seem like the evil stepsisters and stuff? And is Pretha supposed to be her fairy godmother? I’m not sure why, but I don’t trust her at all, she’s definitely the familiar face Brie saw at the end of the chapter. Her dress and the falling through the portal at midnight, it all points to the cinderella story, I love it!

    The goblin seemed cool, he was definitely already hinting at something; maybe she has fire power or something? Can’t wait to find out what all his talk about fate was about. Also can’t wait to see what the other items are and to see her trying to steal them, she’s so badass!

    I’m really loving this so far, and I’m already excited for tomorrow!

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    1. Hi, so happy you could join in on your first readalong! I agree, this is giving some Cinderella vibes at the start. let’s see how it all continues today 😊

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    2. This is my first read along too! I tried one other one but couldn’t keep up 🙁

      I agree that it feels very Cinderella-y so far, but I’m hoping that it starts to stray away from that! The silver-eyed guy definitely reminds me of Rhys as well, and I can’t wait to actually learn who he is!

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  7. Ok I am LOVING this book so far! I didn’t think I’d like it so quickly but I was hooked right away and I’m loving the fae plot!

    I’m happy there was a kiss early on, that was a pleasant surprise!

    And I’m screaming over Sebastian actually being the prince!! OF COURSE!!!!! I can’t wait to find out what happens next. My last two reads weren’t so great, so I’m really glad I’m enjoying this one already!

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    1. so happy to hear to you are enjoying it! YAY

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  8. Ngl, I suspected Sebastian being the Seelie prince because of the timing and the dust jacket art 😆

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    1. ahah suspicious timing!

  9. I’m really loving the start to this book! Already there have been many twists and turns (like how Bash is the Seelie Prince!). It’s introduced the characters well and is fairly fast paced so I’m not getting bored. I’m also enjoying the cinderella retelling of it as well.
    Can’t wait for tomorrow to read more!

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  10. Ahh! I love this opening like the first chapter she gives off a mix of Celaena and Jude vibes with breaking in to the fault. And the first time I read this I was like oh Seelie and Unseelie I’m not sure. Because I’m Irish and we grew up with the stories of both courts and you were always warned by older people to watch out for them, even as far as putting iron in with newborns, and so I always kind of had a dislike of the original fae courts (one reason I was cautious with The Cruel Prince) but I just love how Lexi writes it all! I know the first time reading it I wasn’t surprised with Sebastian being fae but the cover art is amazing on the sleeve. And the silver eyes of our mystery guy 😍 the chapter descriptions are class! Like a ‘previously on…’ TV show summary!

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  11. I’m really enjoying it so far, I like how much has happened already! It felt like a Cinderella retelling at the start. I’m intrigued to find out what Brie’s heritage is and how everything pans out, I guessed that Sebastian was the prince but I’m excited to see how it’ll play out now Brie knows 🙂

  12. This is fast-paced so far. A few things were a bit silly to me – like when she was like, man I gotta find this wardrobe. Then there was a section break and the next words were literally I found it…I just think this could have been shown to us much better.

    I like a love triangle so I’m down to clown with what is being set up and I’m also getting some kind of birth mark prophecy she’s the one to unite the sun and moon courts etc and maybe the fire was a means to fake her death and that’s why her mum had to leave her in the mortal realm because of danger in the faerie realm.

    Also there’s some like Cinderella elements – evil step sisteresque figures, big ball, evil stepmother and Pretha is like a fairygodmother character… altho I’m hoping actually sinister.

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  13. I am absolutely loving this book so far…in fact I may carry on reading haha.i
    I really like Brie, she’s a very likeable, strong independent character.
    I guessed Sebastian was fae, mainly because of the artwork… Which I think also looks like Rhys, Rowan and Poppy, anyone else?
    I think silver eyes may be the secret king of the unseelie court!

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  14. I’m really enjoying this book at the minute, it’s really surprised me with the opening
    Brie seems like a fab character and I can’t wait to read more about her

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  15. Definitely a love ‘triangle’ going to happen here! I immediately also thought fae heritage – is she the ‘Princess of Shadows’ mentioned in the tale that she dreamed?? Probably. I wonder who her father was – it’s never mention need, only that her mother abandoned them to go be with her fae lover, which means it is very possible her father is fae.

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  16. Love the cinderella like retelling in the beginning here! I wonder what these three objects do since the lord of night wants them so bad… and there is a lot of talk about her mother, but who is her father (especially seeing her powers)… I just love the world so far, can’t wait to read more tomorrow!

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  17. I’m loving this, very interested to see what turns this takes, and that silver eyed male sounds dreamy so far….

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    1. he’s definitely an intriguing one so far 👀

  18. Such a easy breezy read so far ♥️ There’s definitely more to her mum abandoning them I reckon 🤔

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  19. CALLED IT. Well, called that Sebastian was going to secretly be a faerie…did not expect him to be the prince!

    I love Brie having magic, but I agree with the other commenters…does that mean she might have some fae blood? If her mom disappeared into the faerie lands, does that mean she was following Brie’s faerie father?

    Really loving this so far!

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  20. I wasn’t sure from the first chapter, but it had me hooked by the second. TOTALLY KNEW BASH WAS FAE, it was fun watching her find out though, and, I’m already team silver eyes lol

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  21. Hi everyone!
    So far I like the book, I called Sebastian being the prince, so I hope there will be more plot twists. The start of the book with the two spoiled girls felt a bit like a Cinderella setting.
    I’m not fond of love triangles (only if it turns to a working poly setting), but the silver-eyed Fae guy sounds intriguing and I like Sebastian to an extent as well. I hope we get to know both more!
    I wonder if Brie’s mother is still alive and if Brie is half Fae, because that would explain her fire and shadow powers.
    Looking forward to read more!

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  22. Hey Shaz!
    Thank you so much for this amazing readalong!
    I‘m not gonna lie, the first page got me a little scared that the book is going to be clichée, buttttt after finishing the first day, I now need a tutorial on how to breath!

    It‘s so fast-paced, I could not put it down and I absolutely adore the Cinderalla-ish aspects. I can only applaud to the world building, with the dark and dangerous flair of the human world completely opposing the peaceful and enchanted atmosphere.

    The characters are so full of emotions that I felt drawn to them immediately. Brie is such a tough and passionate character that you can only adore her.

    I‘m really excited to learn more about the mysterious silver eyed fae and who Brie will end up with and when her mother will appear. I imagine that‘s going to be a firework of emotions….

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    1. so happy you are enjoying this book! and i agree the world building is quite something to behold

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  23. I have to say, I’m a sucker for stories about sisters! Before I started the book, I thought it was just going to be about a girl and two fae men having adventures, but now knowing Brie is doing it all to save her sister, I’m here for the story even more!

    I did see Sebastian being both fae and the prince, but I’m more intrigued by the silver-eyed man than him. And even though we barely know anything about him, I’m rooting for him in the love triangle. Part of that might be because I’m not a huge fan of friends-to-lovers trope, but I really don’t like it in a love triangle, because most of the time, I think the girl usually picks the second person then.

    I definitely agree with a lot of people ini thinking that Brie has some fae blood in her somewhere, and that her scar must be a birthmark or symbol for some family. I’m looking forward to seeing how that unfolds. In fact, a lot of the action is really intriguing, and it took a lot of will power to put the book down yesterday after that cliffhanger! Also who is Pretha?? I’m pretty sure she is somehow with the Unseelie Court!

    I’ve also noticed a lot of elements from other stories in here: the evil cousins = Cinderella, the magic mirror = Beauty and the Beast, the magic wardrobe = Narnia, and a few more I cant quite recall.

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  24. Ive gone off books about fae so i want expecting much but I ended up loving it. Lots of interesting things happening, i mean I should have seen it coming but i didn’t 😂😂

  25. Hi shaz and all. Just caught up with day 1. Wow what a interesting first few chapters. For a moment I thought it’s going to take a Cinderella vibe. As someone mentioned in the comments above. I think Brie might have faerie blood.

    cant wait for the next few chapters.

  26. I went into the story completely blind. I had seen the art on the dust jacket when I first got the box, but then forgot about it and didn’t look at it again after I started reading the book. So I didn’t realised Sebastian was fae until I started seeing the hints, like Brie commenting on the glamour that made him look like a fae and him flinching at the comment. And I didn’t realised he was prince Ronan until just before he admitted it.

    I also kept trying to guess who the mysterious guy with the silver eyes was, and at one point wondered if he could be prince Ronan, then thought he must be the real Unseelie ruler.

    I also got lots of Cinderella vibes at the beginning of the story, with the evil stepmother, the stepsisters and with Pretha acting like a fairy godmother. And Brie also had to leave by midnight!

    I’m looking forward to reading the next part. I’m not sure I like love triangles, which seems to be the way the story is going to. I usually prefer to know who the love interest will be from the start. And I can’t figure out at the moment which of the two princes is the one.

    I also thought there must be something special in Brie’s heritage, as she seems to have powers that a human couldn’t have. I agree she might be part fairy.

    1. Yesssss, I also had the Cinderella vibes! Also the Fairy godmother figure that gave her a make over 🤩. And the forgetting the time and dancing the whole evening/night.

  27. I’m really enjoying the book so far! It’s kinda of giving me darkest part of the forest vibes. I didn’t think that Sebastian was fae until Brie was saying how good his glamour was and I thought that maybe he could be one of them just not the prince. I like Brie as a character so far and how shes tired of being the one to rescue everyone especially while searching for her sister. It makes her a bit more relatable. I’m loving the writing and the side characters as well and can’t wait to see where the story goes. I’m thinking that Brie is potentially half fae?

  28. Oh it’s pulled me straight in!

    There definitely has to be some fae heritage with Brie. I’m guessing she’s not remembering what really happened during that fire.
    She’s clearly got some powers that seem to be showing them self in the fae world.

    Very curious about the silver eyed fae. I wander what he thought when she disappeared.

    Also love the references to other fairy tales.

    Can’t wait for tomorrow.

  29. Hi everyone
    So I am a bit late to the readalong but I will catch up.
    I to am gatting cinderella vibrs from the book I kind of like it can’t wait to se how this cinderella story continues.

    Did not connect Bash with fae at all and his the prince nice.

    Brie is soo amazing and strong I like her stubborn attitude too. I Even before we find out the story about the fay princess I kind of connected Brie with being from unseele cort when she could hide in the shadow. But than the story she is totaly the princess.
    Her tattoo the sun and the moon will probaly lead to her uniting the corts together since she has some kind of power or connection to both corts cant wait to find out

  30. Love the pacinf. The book is easy to get into and it moves quickly enough.

    I like Brie, though sometimes I wish she’d think before she acts. But she seems to know this too.

    Also, at first I thought Sebastian was the unseelie heir, but then I figueed he was Ronan. I think the other person she danced with is the rightful unseelie heir.

    I also think her mother left them in the mortal world because of Brie’s powers. Which she taught her about via bedtime stories. Maybe Brie is part fae? I don’t know. That said: a crescent moon and a sun scar? She sounds like she’s the secret love child of the seelie and unseelie court? I guessing a lot now, but it means I’m invested in the story, so that’s a good sign 😂.

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  31. Hi Shaz and community!

    So, this book is giving me all the life – it’s so much fun and every page has me going wtf, I need to know more! I love the Bash/Ronan reveal, and Finn is also giving me all the good feels. I’m clearly a sucker for a tall, dark and brooding type.

    I’ve already finished the book (I got an eArc in July) but I haven’t had anyone to discuss it with until now, so I’m really looking forward to seeing everyone’s takes on the book!

    Steff

  32. Picking up on all the paralells with Cinderella. Very curious about Brie’s heritage. Who & what her parents are. Wgere her shadow magic comes from etc. How the shadow King knew about her skills… could he be her father? I was not at all surprised that Sebastian is Fae. Curious to see who this person is that Brie recognises. Could it possibly be her mother?

  33. Just dropping in to catch up after I was absolutely glued to The Gilded Cage! So excited for your edition to come out soon.
    I do love a good faerie book and I see this being another to add to the list. A little predictable so far and I have a feeling I already know who that mysterious silver eyed fae is.
    Really interested to find where her mother is and who their father is given this shadow princess stuff…

  34. I am really loving this book so far. It is so good and the characters are amazing.

  35. I was planning to be on top of this read a long for once but alas…

    Enjoying the read so far. Brie is being a bit of an “I’m not like other girls” girl in putting down the other women seeking the prince’s hand- but I have hope that this is an area for character growth.

    As a dressmaker, I went a bit gaga for the magical pins that transform Brie’s dress. I could definitely use some of those.

    A fun start and I’m excited to keep going!

  36. Did I read the entire book in one go and forgot to check in with the readalong? Yes!
    So here are some thoughts: I thought there was a bit much happening in the beginning until we got to the Unseelie Court. That’s where I got stuck and couldn’t put down the book. I kind of also saw through Sebastian’s cover. I mean it was too good to be true that he just showed up in Faerie when Brie needed help.

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