Some other time is right around the clock.
There must have been love there, too. Otherwise the world would be far too frightening to allow such fragile things as trust and happiness.
But even this certainty of love is tainted by sorrow because it--like those who provided it--are gone now. She wonders in idle moments whether this has happened before, and whether it will happen again.
She tries to imagine life without Fulle and finds that she can't.
As they walk home together, they pass a large building with sultry air unfurling from its many windows, and the evening breeze seems suddenly frigid by comparison. When Pamela approaches the open entryway, familiarity blossoms in the enveloping warmth, in the spongy scent of dampened wood.
"A bath?" she asks.
Fulle turns his sleepy-eyed gaze first on her, and then onto the misty exhalations of the building.
"You like baths?" he asks in return.
Pamela nods, and they head inside. Fulle speaks briefly with the proprietor before returning with two chips of wood. He holds one of them out to Pamela, and she curls her fingers around it, running the pad of her thumb over the edge, worn smooth by many hands before hers. It's a pleasant sensation, but not at all familiar, so it must be a new one for her.
She supposes that, in her next life, when she is given a new name and forgets this one entirely, she might clasp a similar token in her hand and feel safe and happy, though she won't understand why.
The thought frightens and saddens her, so she pushes it away and sinks into the assumptive warmth of the water.
Later, as they leave the baths, Pamela takes hold of Fulle's arm and leans into his shoulder.
"What's wrong?" he asks.
She thinks, I'm afraid of losing you.
She thinks, I'm going to lose you.
She says, "Nothing, really," and presses closer.