1. Another lifetime crumbled to dust beneath her fingertips as she forced years into the amulet until it burst.
2. In the olden days you could buy and sell a soul for silver, but the world waits for no demon and now I deal in iPads and prepaid calling cards.
3. “You misunderstand our physiology—here youth only lasts long enough to weed out the stupid, a brief violent burst of growth and chemical imbalances that grinds down any imperfections in the herd. At least it did until we developed the minds to see the carnage. Now youth is confined, restrained humanely, until the brain can catch up with the body.”
4. There are no absolutes in life, not every merchant turns in a starving child for thievery, not every guard turns a blind eye to cruelty when the money’s good enough, but it does happen and he’s learned not to trust his luck.
5. Technology without power is just dead weight and they leave it in the wreckage. The first few weeks bring rough adjustment to bedtimes brought on by biology and not clocks.