Paladin Wynnefreja of the Church of Eternal Light, must risk her soul by working with a woman who has heretical powers in order to defeat the vampiric coven that is draining the common folk of their lifeforce.
- Adult, Dark Fantasy
- estimated: 90-100k
- Market: women and queer identities 18-30 with an interest in Bloodborne and dark multilayered fantasy
- Themes: The interplay of personal morals vs Institutional Religious demands & The duty vs corruption of having power
- Not yet written. Comparable work: Hungry Skies 95k, complete.
- Mood: Interplay of surrealist and eldritch dreaming worlds and a dark waking world
Paladin Wynnefreya is sent to investigate a village plagued with a sleeping sickness. Upon arrival, she finds the village empty save for a strange web in the fields that covers the missing villagers. In the centre, Wynn finds a sleeping man and kills him, causing the villagers all die except one woman cocooned in webbing. Wynn frees her and discovers that the woman has no memory of her identity.
Disturbed, Wynn sets out to the nearest monastery to report her discovery and bring the survivor somewhere safe. Along the way, the woman chooses the name Primula after the flowers that grow along the roadside. Wynn is granted a vision from the Living God, Mother Brightest, that directs her to another village with the sleeping plague.
With Primula’s help, Wynn learns that the webs are created by vampiric mages called Vagarists that feed off living things using their web. Primula surprises both Wynn and herself by using similar magic to now-dead Vagarist to save the trapped villagers. Wynn know magic like this is heresy.
Wynn is torn between arresting Primula and hiding her magic from the Church until they know more about the Vagarists. Her decision is made when she realizes Primula can help save others trapped in webs.
Primula discovers the location of the leaders of the Vagarists. In exchange for Prim’s help, Wynn will allow her to leave once the work is done, knowing this choice risks Wynn’s very soul. The Church sends more visions, growing impatient with Wynn’s delays, until Wynn learns other Paladins have been sent to retrieve her. The next morning, Wynn wakes to find the blessings that protected her are gone.
Wynn abandons the trappings of a Paladin and they continue toward the Vagarist’s nest. The closer they get, the more nightmares affect Wynn, no longer protected by the Eternal Light. Prim helps, using a web to protect Wynn at night from the Vagarist’s influence. As she does, Prim and Wynn slowly piece together Prim’s memories in her dreams.
Prim was a protégé, meant to be converted to a full Vagarist, however Wynn interrupted the ritual, leaving Prim somewhere in between. The Vagarists seek an elevated state of existence, similar to Mother Brightest, the lich behind the Church and its blessings.
Wynn can’t decide if she should expose the Church or allow it to continue, as its blessings offer a better life to its flock. After discussion with Prim, and thought, they turn toward the Holy capital. There, they confront the Mother Brightest and confirm she is a lich. Both refuse the Mother’s offer of power and together Primula and Wynn kill her after a fierce struggle.
Wynn is mortally injured and the women notice the world around them is starting to crumble without the Mother’s magic. Primula wraps Wynn in the Mother’s web and takes her place as God, sacrificing her happiness to save Wynn and her world. When Wynn wakes, she is healed, but alone. She vows to protect Prim, becoming her guardian.