I knew, as soon as I brought Ben onstage in Moon Called, what his history was. I had to know so that his actions remained logically consistent throughout the series—though I didn’t know if I would ever bring them to light.
I am not an outline writer. The one book that I did write with a real, honest-to-goodness outline was really difficult for me to finish—since I already knew the ending, I didn’t feel that drive that usually pumps me through the last half of the book. That doesn’t mean I don’t do any planning on the large scale, but it makes for some interesting events on the small. Toward the end of Iron Kissed, Mercy is hurt. Adam, torn by guilt and unwilling to hurt her more, leaves Mercy—but not unguarded. Now who, I thought, should he send to guard Mercy? Warren was too . . . predictable. I could have sent one of the women. But, on a whim, I threw in Ben. What followed took me totally by surprise in the best of all possible ways—Ben was the perfect person.
Ben is in the process of change. We mere mortals have only seventy or so years in which to get over the bad things that have happened to us—and the bad things we’ve done. I found an event that would be pivotal for Ben—and a chance to bring in some of the weird and absurd things my husband ran into in his years as a DBA (database administrator) for a huge government contractor.
I would, in the interest of fairness, like to point out that although the IT (information technology) field is, for whatever reason, heavily dominated by men, Ben’s company, thanks to government hiring incentives, has many competent women in both the DBA and programming departments. But this is told (mostly) from Ben’s viewpoint, and Ben has issues with women in general, so his viewpoint is a little skewed.
The events in “Redemption” take place between Frost Burned and Night Broken.