So … just to say a little something here: with apologies, Kala, I have to agree with Arrendis and Loai. Ali’s case and mine are similar in some ways, but different in a pretty key way. And, I think if someone ought to be forgiven, it’s her.
Ali is a timeline reversion. The person she never wants to become, and whose name she refuses, “Alizabeth Vea,” was as I understand it a pretty blood-soaked heretic. This version of her never did any of that, though; she’s a copy from before that time. She had, on waking, the same potential that the originator did-- but she also knows what became of her alternate branch. She has not, in her own timeline, committed the same crimes; those belong to someone who was once herself, but followed a different path. I’m not aware of a culture that’s good with punishing people for crimes they haven’t committed.
I’m an amnesiac. I woke four years ago with a head full of intellectual knowledge, but no knowledge of myself or memory of my past. The person I was, before, is part of my timeline. Everything she did up until she created the backup clone that became me, I am a continuation from. I just can’t remember.
I also don’t remember a lot of the stuff that made her who she was. I know Father beat Mother to death before my eyes, but I don’t remember it. I know I grew up the half-blood daughter of a murderer in rural Achura. I know Mother’s family was embarrassed by my existence. I know I sought capsuleer training in spite of the dangers mostly in a bid to prove I wasn’t useless. I know I interpreted death in the pod as real, and myself as dead-- a ghost. And I know I blamed Mother’s family, and especially its patriarch, for my death. I know that’s why I murdered Grandfather.
I don’t remember any of that. But is there a place in this world where forgetfulness is a defense to kinslaying? Or any of the other things I’ve done?
I’m still her, in the end. If I really believe in justice, I should go home and face what I did. But, I don’t, and I’m not in such a hurry to die. I have stuff I want to do. So, instead of returning, I accept exile and stay away, and try to find ways to bleach away or else somehow compensate for the stain I’ve left on this world.
I’m “her,” a continuation of a single person, branched only after what mattered was already done. Ali isn’t. She’s herself, but not the person that other branch became.
If either one of us deserves forgiveness, it’s Ali.