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Wiktionary cites suck the oxygen out of as a variant of suck the air out of. The definition is as follows: Alternative forms suck all the air out of suck the oxygen out of Verb suck the air out of (third-person singular simple present sucks the air out of, present participle sucking the air out of, simple past and past participle sucked the air out of) ...


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One meaning of "to mill" is "to move about in a disorderly or aimless fashion", especially in a circular movement. The "periphery" is the edge. So basically, the section is just stating that Hassan was in their life, but not in a purposeful or meaningful way.


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