By Sara Saab
In the amnesty-city of Vannat, Aln Panette has let guilt go.
The city of Vannat is a strict and inscrutable rulemaster, so Panette doesn’t question the rules. She lives a plain, clean life. Keeps her recollections as free of the war as she can.
Panette figures she has earned an indulgence or two for her decade as a soldier. Memories of Odarr Harvei are one indulgence. Harvei’s smile of fifteen years ago flashing in the light of the war caravan’s lanterns, her easy company, their mild one-upmanship. The unbroken sky above them.
Other small indulgences Panette allows herself:
Leading the stallions at Vannat’s racecourse stables through their daily exercises.
A now-and-then treat of salted fish in tart molasses that reminds her painfully of Camillon, her home.
And in this city of unremarkable languages passed naturally from parent to child, not a drop of magic in the syllables, not the barest trace of rebellion or fury, Panette indulges in the knowledge that — at least in Vannat — the killing has stopped. (Continue Reading…)