“The trouble is that we have a bad habit, encouraged by pedants and sophisticates, of considering happiness as something rather stupid.”

This quote appears in the third paragraph of the story. The narrator explains the difficulty in communicating a happy society with their audience. Of note, the narrator assumes their audience to be conditioned to view happiness as something vapid or insipid, but the narrator suggests there is more to happiness than what they think they might know. This supports the major moral problem later posited by the existence of the child. Happiness and suffering are connected and dependent on each other, much like the happiness of Omelas and the suffering of the child.

“They leave Omelas, they walk ahead into the darkness, and they do not come back. The place they go towards is a place even less imaginable to most of us than the city of happiness. I cannot describe it at all. It is possible that it does not exist.”

This quote appears at the end of the story. The narrator describes the ones who leave Omelas, the ones who reject the terms of the city due to their inability to enact any meaningful change for the suffering child. The narrator is unsure of where they go as they walk into the “darkness.” Omelas has been imagined by the narrator, and by describing their destination as “less imaginable,” the narrator suggests that they are unsure whether a fully fair and just society actually exists.