The body... sucked in a shuddering breath... and then... exhaled it in a single word...A little later the narrator looks the word up in the dictionary:
'Vale!' it said.
What was that word the stranger had breathed in my face? 'Vale!' That was it!
...here it was: vale... It was pronounced val-eh...
Am I the only person to see something wrong here?
When someone says something to me I know how it is pronounced but not necessarily how it is spelt. In this story, the narrator knows how to spell a word she has heard but not how it sounds. How is that possible? It pulled me right out of the story.