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The sequence is two sequences interlaced. That is what makes it difficult to figure out.


The answer is:


because even terms reduce by 3.5


OH MY GOD I just got it. Like, as I was looking at my own question. Boy do I feel silly. The next number is PHEW that was bugging the bejeezus out of me! Hahaha


(And for completeness, the answer)


This is a type of puzzle called a "cryptarithm" or an "alphametic". We have many examples of this type of puzzle under the alphametic tag.

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