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Abilene's main conflict is her feeling of abandonment by her father. She doesn't understand why her injury made her father send her to Manifest. As she listens to Miss Sadie's stories about the past, she comes to believe that Jinx in the earlier stories is her father, Gideon. She learns from the stories that Jinx blamed himself for Ned's death. It is never spoken in the story, but readers can infer that Gideon felt responsible for Abilene's injury and was afraid that if she stayed with him, something bad would happen to her and he might lose her as he lost Ned.
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