Anatomy Lessons

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Title: Anatomy Lessons
Author(s): fawatson
Date(s): 25 December 2011
Length: 1362 words
Genre: backstory
Fandom: Mary Renault
External Links: - in Yuletide 2011 collection
- on MRF

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"Anatomy Lessons" is a short story by fawatson based on Mary Renault's 1953 novel The Charioteer. It is based on a throwaway comment that Ralph makes to Laurie in Chapter 8 about the reason he was sent to school: "[My mother] saw me aged six, and the little girl next door aged seven, rather solemnly discussing anatomy."

Having been sent to his room for reasons he doesn't really understand, Ralph creeps out to listen to the adults discuss his future.

"Anatomy Lessons" was written as a gift for toujours_nigel in Yuletide 2011 to the prompt, "Anything you write would be amazing, but maybe pre-chapter 3 fic? Or, in the case of Andrew and Alec, or, hell, Ralph, simply back-story? I love character-driven stuff, basically. :)". The story was originally posted to the main Yuletide collection. After the author reveal on 1 January 2012, it was also posted to the maryrenaultfics LiveJournal community.

Comments on the story include the following:

  • "Thank you for this. I love child!Ralph, already exhibiting signs of the man he's going to grow up into, but still very much a bright, curious little boy. His family, too, is lovely in its varied responses, though Mrs. Lanyon, of course, is little short of terrifying. Quite makes one appreciate Lucy Odell/Straike." — comment by toujours_nigel
  • "This is really great! Such a convincing picture of Ralph as a child, his view of the world, and the workings of his family. I particularly liked the little touches of humour, suggesting the way that the incident may not be nearly as traumatic (or explicable) for the sinner as for the onlookers." — comment by Naraht