WIP: Boy, Is She Persistent

As always, this is roughly unedited – though we’re getting closer to a final draft. Woohoo!


For me, the next days or months or years were bliss.

I do not know how long it was. I do not know; while some moments stand out in blazing technicolor, others fade to sepia blandness or edge-smudged coal.

I recall three winters, three times of snow and ice and less food, but I cannot say for sure I spent them with her.

I recall the glory of spring and the richness of autumn, with colorful leaves that stood against the blue sky and took my breath away as the rose-touched lake had so long ago. But I cannot say for sure I spent them with her.

I will tell you what I do know.

Within the course of the time we spent together, my brilliant, beautiful, resilient first child tamed herself without the help of a maker – and then, she tamed me.

I could provide no extra power of will, no pushes toward the civil concepts of self-control or self-care. I was ready to listen to the Beast at all times, and given what I now know of the tide-pull the maker’s will has upon the child, I do not know how she resisted.

She had to be in control for herself and me – creating by force of will water that flowed uphill, that influenced her maker instead of the other way around. She guided me – taught me, which by design should not have been possible – to never kill children, to avoid the unwisdom of well-armed cities.

She taught me, friend, to stop before my prey would die.

The patience this took… the love, the kindness required not to just leave me behind and continue on to her own life unending… my friend, I have no words. My first child taught me, and somehow, in spite of all against us, I learned.


A three-times bestselling author, Ruthanne Reid has led a convention panel on world-building, taught courses on plot and character development, and been the keynote speaker for the Write Practice Retreat. Author of two series with five books and fifty-plus short stories, Ruthanne has lived in her head since childhood, when she wrote her first story about a pony princess and a genocidal snake-kingdom and used up her mom’s red typewriter ribbon in the process. When she isn’t reading, writing, or reading about writing, Ruthanne enjoys old cartoons with her husband and two cats, and dreams of living on an island beach far, far away. P.S. Red is still her favorite color.