When imperial powers fray at the edges, ethnic groups perceived to be the beneficiaries of their trust suddenly start to look like aliens not natives, however long they may have been settled.

The way that most men deal with traditions, even traditions of their own country, is to receive them all alike as they are delivered, without applying any critical test whatever.

Therefore, as always, make of this voice what you choose to make of it. Make of me what you choose to make of me, but recognize within yourselves the vitality of your being. And look to no man or no idea or no woman or no dogma, but the vitality of your own being, and trust it. And that which offends your soul, turn away from, but trust yourself.

I’m not saying a hunt isn’t something we crave, but to a man, we hate to be manipulated. And this is our town, as much as any human’s. Our home, and our neighbours and perhaps even our friends. You fall into the trap of thinking as Fallon does, that there are only heroes and villains, monsters and victims, and nothing between. We all stand in that space, crossing the line to one side, then the other. Even you.

I thought I would get calmer, surer, but each time we come close I feel almost sick at first. As though each time vibrates with the times before. I feel a terrible sorrow coming up my throat, I don’t know why. And it can only be consoled against the length of her body. Lying down with her for the first time… all the pain I didn’t know I had, till at her touch it disappeared like smoke. Is this what purgatory feels like? To burn painlessly? If so, why isn’t it called heaven?

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