Retconning the Netwalk Sequence–Winter Shadows and its impact on the storyline

winter shadows

So all along in the Netwalk Sequence continuity, I’ve held that Will and Diana got together in the face of parental opposition to their relationship–his father and her mother both being passionately opposed to the marriage. As recently as The Daughters Cycle this past summer, I had Diana leaving Stephens Reclamation to found Do It Right when Sarah discovers that Diana is still dating Will (this is a world where corporatism extends into family life and relationship, including the founding of corporate dynasties). I have some lovely emo stuff lying around the hard drive to that effect.

And then I started writing Dahlia, Winter Shadows, and Problems at the Andrews Ranch. All of these stories deal with the early relationship of Diana and Will as well as the foundational period of Do It Right. While there is some estrangement that happens between Diana and Sarah as a result of Diana’s choice of Will, as I’ve been writing Winter Shadows, I have come to realize that it’s not opposition because of who Will’s family is and all that leads to the eventual estrangement; it’s due to other reasons. Diana and Will disagree with Sarah and to some extent she ends up getting co-opted by Gizmo–along with Francis. It’s just that Sarah breaks free while Francis embraces it.

Arrgh. Originally these stories were just filler that I was going to write before plunging into Netwalk’s Children. But now I’m realizing I’m writing crucial backstory that needs to exist before I can start Children. I’m starting to understand just how revolutionary Melanie’s rebellion against Diana was at the end of Netwalker Uprising–and why Sarah condones it–and why Bess ends up being such a huge game changer. Yikes.

Meanwhile, back to work. I’m not getting in a lot of words over winter break because–well, decompressing from the insanity of teaching and other stuff going on, but I am working on slow but steady process. I just need to get today’s scene finished. Which…have a taste, raw writing fresh off of the word processor, warts and all:


“You’re springing my son from the PAZ prison he belongs in. I want him.”

No,” Diana said, before her mother could speak. “You had your chance to help him. We’re not going through all this work just to give him to you.”

“What my daughter said,” her mother added.

“He needs to debrief. He carries Executive classification Corporate secrets.”

Sarah snorted. “If you were truly worried about that level of disclosure he wouldn’t be in a PAZ prison right now!”

“He knew the risks. He was supposed to have died rather than disclose. He had the pill if the sentence didn’t go through.” Parker Landreth’s voice went cold. “He chickened out.”

Her mother straightened up. “I suggest you tell your staff to stand down.” Her voice matched Parker’s for chill.

Parker Landreth stared at her for a moment. “Or what?”

“Or I’ll shoot,” Peter’s voice came from above and behind Diana, to her right.

The click of more weapons being armed resonated from around them. How the–Stealthsuits. That’s right. He’s been researching stealthsuits with Francis.

The question as to how and why Landreth Security hadn’t detected the stealthsuits could be answered later.

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