So I picked up the character, put her in a scene in a natural way. And I had no idea where to go from there.
So I spent time noticing what she noticed. And I still didn’t know how to foreshadow what’s coming later.
So I thought some more.
And then I realized that what she noticed is already a symbol for the situation as it is now: Outwardly, everything is going along normally, but pressure is building behind the scenes, and the slightest disruption can make the whole thing fall apart.
If you ever read 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, you’ll recall a conversation between Aronnax and Nemo about how glass is strong but fragile. What my character tells the MC is that her job is like that, little realizing that the MC is in just such a position.
What do you think? Does that accomplish enough?