When additional material is added to a series, finished or ongoing, one of the first things readers want to know is when in relation to the primary work it takes place. Sometimes the author tells you. Sometimes ze does not. Pat wants the reader know, but he also likes to make you work a little.
The Slow Regard of Silent Things takes place between the events of chapter four of The Wise Man’s Fear, “Tar and Tin,” and chapter eleven, “Haven.” The following passage precedes the events of the novella.
“You didn’t bring your lute,” she said after we had finished eating.
“I have to go read tonight,” I said. “But I’ll bring it soon.”
“Six nights from now,” I said. I’d be finished with admissions then, and more studying would be pointless.
Her tiny face pulled a frown. “Six days isn’t soon,” she said. “Tomorrow is soon.”
“Six days is soon for a stone,” I said.
“Then play for a stone in six days,” she said. “And play for me tomorrow.”
“I think you can be a stone for six days,” I said. “It is better than being a lettuce.”
She grinned at that. “It is.”WMF p35
And the final line of The Slow Regard of Silent Things, “DEEP IN THE UNDERTHING, stones warm beneath her feet, Auri heard a faint, sweet strain of music,” occurs concurrent with this passage.
Auri wasn’t expecting me, but this was the first place I’d met her, and on clear nights she sometimes came out to watch the stars. I checked to make sure the classrooms overlooking the courtyard were dark and empty, then I brought out my lute and began to tune it.
I had been playing for almost an hour when I heard a rustling movement in the overgrown courtyard below. Then Auri appeared, scurrying up the overgrown apple tree and onto the roof.
She ran toward me, her bare feet skipping lightly across the tar, her hair blowing behind her. “I heard you!” she said as she came close. “I heard you all the way down in Vaults!”
“I seem to remember,” I said slowly, “that I was going to play music for someone.”
“Me!” She held both her hands close to her chest, grinning. She moved from foot to foot, almost dancing with her eagerness. “Play for me! I have been as patient as two stones together,” she said. “You are just in time. I could not be as patient as three stones.”WMF 103
She gives him the candle, a kiss, and the offer of a place to stay. All of which she’s been preparing.