Writing Wednesday: Retroactive Foreshadowing

I’m continuing my dual revision projects, editing Guardian III and adding chapters from Terrence’s point of view into The Princess Beyond the Thorns.  The added chapters are definitely bringing more layers into the story, and it gives me a chance to bring in elements that will be important later, that I didn’t know existed when I first wrote this.

For instance, I didn’t invent Elena as a character until I wrote the next section of the book–but she’s important to Terrence and it makes sense he’d mention her to Rose sooner.  Here’s an excerpt that mentions Elena, builds on the growing romance, and lets me poke a little fun at romantic tropes of silly misunderstandings.  Enjoy!


“Who is Elena?” Rose asked, adding a pair of gardenias to the flowers in her basket.

Someone he had simpler emotions about than his mother, and Terrence grinned.  “Elena is the other most wonderful person I’ve ever known.”

“Oh?” Rose said, turning away from the gardenias and walking a little farther down the path.

Terrence’s eyes narrowed as he looked at her back.  He hadn’t thought about the possible implications in what he’d said before he said it, might still not have if Rose hadn’t turned away just then…but what was she imagining his relationship was with this woman he said was wonderful?  And did she not like what she was imagining?

He was being ridiculous.  Why should Rose care what Elena was to him?  Why should he care if Rose cared…well.  That was less ridiculous.

“Elena is my cousin,” he volunteered, because letting any misconception go on was even more ridiculous than anything else.  “My mother’s niece.  She lived with us, so we pretty well grew up together.  I spent whole years of my childhood pretending Elena was my sister.”  Just in case the cousin clarification wasn’t enough.

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