Quite a few comments last Sunday expressed confusion over Zhaim. I thought I’d explain something and give a snippet from Tourist Trap, my now-published book and winner of the Garcia Award for best fiction book of the year.

The R’il’nai and some of the R’il’noids in my fiction are able to strip memories from their minds into computer storage. All but Roi have done this in fairness to the “new” Zhaim, so Roi alone has the memory of Zhaim before Marna imposed an artificial conscience on him. He also seems to be the only one who has retained the memory that Marna said the treatment should be repeated every quarter century. The snippet below was well over 200 years before Rescue Operation in story time, when Roi was only 18.

The woods lightened ahead of them, and the mist lifted as they entered a clearing. Roi glanced around quickly, looking for something they could use as shelter. Nothing but grass and sodden wildflowers. He checked the compass and headed straight across, hoping the Mastodon River wasn’t too far away.

He heard a thunderclap behind him when he was halfway across the clearing and spun to face it, fearful he knew what it was. Zhaim stood before him, a triumphant leer on his handsome face and a beamer swinging toward the party.

If you want to see other bits from both Tourist Trap and Rescue Operation, click Index above and then Six Sentence Sunday.

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