by Jay Lake and Ruth Nestvold
The Moon is mistress of the tides, which means she controls the blood of men, for their red-washed veins flow with salt, echoing the sea that is mother to us all. When she calls men to her, they rise to her attendance. When she refuses them, they drown in tears of sorrow. Women, though, follow a flow and rhythm of their own, still in Sister Moon's power, but free from her compulsions
So it was that among the greatest of the Rose Knights serving under the Moon's banner in her wars with the Army of the Sun were the flowers of womanhood. Green Ice stood strong among them as the Green Knight, her armor a shade so pale as to be nearly white, her eyes the piercing color of a mountain meadow in spring, her hair silver-white as the streams that flow downward into the cathedral-forests.
Her power and her weakness were both this: Green Ice had found that her heart loved more than she could bear. Long had she been wed to a scribe who practiced his trade in the silver-stoned alleys of the Moon's great city at Point-of-Sleep. To him she came back from her battles and caravans and hunts. Of him she thought when she slept alone on high crags among ravens and the bones of owls. For him she did everything in her life of war, as he did for her in keeping a homely house, filled with friendship and love and fine food, always ready when she appeared in her dented armor and lined face, ready for his love.
Yet on the high roads, or among the ranks of Moon's haunted forests, or in the twisting byways of seacoast towns, Green Ice found again and again that she faced handsomer men, who save for the sword's-edge between them, might have been her lovers. That swell within her heart disturbed her terribly, challenged her loyalty to the scribe at Point-of-Sleep, and so drove her to a battle-fury unmatched since the passing of the storied Black Madonna. Women under arms she slew with the casual dispatch of a hound against a fox. Men under arms she slew with the vigor of a woman at threat.