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For we are no longer innocent, we who do not see and do not remember, we incurious ones, we conspirators in disappearance.  I too murdered Elaine Coleman.  Let this account be entered in the record.

cement-basketball-hoop-ground-800x800Honestly, I just love this as an ending sentence.  Throughout the whole story we see the narrator struggling to remember this woman he had known when he was younger.  He digs up old memories of minuscule interactions with Elaine, none of which were particularly remarkable in the moment, but together
they build to the conclusion we see above.  The disappearance of Elaine Coleman may have been due to a literal fading away, but it’s also an incredibly powerful metaphor for how people who live unremarkable lives can vanish from our brains and return only when something horrible happens to them.  This combination of possibly real memories and current day reminders of Elaine’s disappearance serve to keep the readers wondering how Elaine really vanished and whether our narrator is reliable or if his memories are artificial ones prompted by some sort of obsession on his part.

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