WIP: Solomon’s Choice – Biological Weapons

Hello! This is a snippet hinting at things I’ve wanted to reveal for years – the creation of Notte, and what happened after.

Join the newsletter for more information on those book, for sneak-peeks, and for giveaways!

I’m almost on autopilot today, just cataloging, working toward final analysis of all the things Kanon mentioned, trying my best to relate them all to modern science.

Once I realized he wasn’t separating by some kind of primitive understanding of DNA, but rather reaction, it became much easier.

That Seven Peoples thing – Terrance wasn’t wrong about how ancient it is. There are types of cells here that seem identical to others in every way – except that some react to light, and others don’t; some react to dark, and others don’t (Why? Why?). Some respond to cold, some to hot; some to other substances (water, wood, chlorophyll, orange juice, blood…).

How the hell Kanon cobbled all of these things together to make one, coherent being that lives and breathes and heals and reproduces is utterly beyond me. At least, it is for now.

Not the way I’d do it, though… it makes sense. He wasn’t searching for knowledge here, exactly; he was aiming for a specific result.

Which was what?

I need to ask him.

“A weapon,” says Notte.

“Please explain.”

He does, and my spine grows a layer of sharp-edged ice.

A weapon to destroy humanity – with no chance of immune responses, no chance of distance providing safety, no chance of any preventative measures actually working.

Which meant this weapon needed to be cognizant, able to solve problems, able to chase down.

A being that was inherently contagious. A being that must drink human blood; a being that would, in that case, pursue and devour every single human on the face of the world, possibly creating more of itself in the process – and then, when there was no more human blood left to sustain, simply… die.

Well. I hadn’t truly thought Kanon and I were of a type before, though it was comforting to read things from a scientific mind. Now, I think we could not be more different.

“Why? Why did he hate us so much?” My voice is small, almost a squeak.

“I never knew,” says Notte. “Honestly. He never explained any of his reasoning to me – though I have often thought… he disliked competition.”


“He considered himself the beginning of questioning,” says Notte. “It is absurd, of course; there were those before him, and those after, who would ask questions, push the line, continue forward beyond what is into what could be. Of his generation, he was certainly the most inquisitive; he felt it made him special.”

“Did it?” I challenge.

“Yes.” He shrugs slightly. “But then, there was you.”

He does not mean me, personally. I know that. “And we… all questioned.”

“Yes. All of you took things and improved them, reforged knives that already worked, fiddled with bowstrings to aim further than you needed, bred new flowers because the colors already in the world were never enough. In a million tiny ways, you simply were… much.”

I shiver again. “And he felt less special?”

“I think so. Again – he never said.”

“That doesn’t seem like enough reason to want to do this. I mean… this is just aimed at humans.”


“But how could he guarantee… here you are, with all your free will… things,” I say, waving my hand. “With only Terrance allowed to kill people.”


“Then he failed. He completely failed.”

Notte sighs. “No. He succeeded.”

The cold from my spine has traveled to all my limbs, and I cannot stop shaking.


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.