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Alyssha promised her father she wouldn't return to Bandor, and for six years she has kept that promise. But the hit-and-run victim she found dying on a Granville street was a man she met in that other world, and his family won't know what happened to him unless she goes back to tell them. She really has no choice, has she?
And the other dead man, the body lying in a willow grove near the road to Bandor Gan... Finding him there was just a terrible coincidence, wasn't it?
Alyssha fervently hopes so. Yes, six years ago Bandor had troubles – cruel and repressive laws, workers exploited in the city's woolen mills and the northern mines. Growing pains of the budding industrial revolution. Some people were angry, ready to fight. But these problems seem smaller and easier to solve, somehow, than the problems she's left behind. Bandor is cleaner, kinder, more peaceful, more right, than the frantic world she inherited in 21st Century America.
Anyway, the problems aren't hers to solve. There's so much country here that these troubles don't touch. She'll go to the nomadic village where her friends are, where she was happy all those years ago. She'll study with the old kura, learning to be a teacher, a healer. Her life will mean more, here among these cheerful, pleasant people, than it would mean in Granville. She'll find her home here, and she'll be content.
And, as in a fairy tale, there'll be a happy ending. She and Kardl loved each other back then, when they were children. Now they're grown up, and the daydreams that sustained her in Granville will come true at last. Kardl will be here, waiting for her, as she's waited all these years for him…