PW #417: Adult Fantasy: THE RADIANCE OF BLACK
Manuscript Status: Finished
Mentor Name: Hayley Stone
Mentee Name: Brian O’Conor
Title: THE RADIANCE OF BLACK
Genre: Dark Fantasy
Word Count: 91,000
In a city divided into constant day and night, ex-cultist Ferris Foust and disgraced paladin Sesily Marigold form an uneasy alliance to stop fanatics from extinguishing the city’s artificial sun and resurrecting a primordial evil.
Sesily Marigold’s armor stuck to her skin as the light of Aubade, the great artificial sun of Radiant Heights, filled the chamber. The noxious odor of a condemned man, cooking alive in his glass prison, stung her nose.
“Have you come to turn off the light, Magister?” The gaunt man behind the glass picked at his face, red skin peeling from overexposure to the sun. He spoke in staggered breaths, gasping for air after every word. “Just a moment, is all I ask.”
Sesily let the word rise between them like a wall. Malik Temps had murdered eleven young women before being locked away in the Solar Cells deep below the Conclave of Absolution. Now another girl was missing—the daughter of a prominent Senator—and Sesily had no choice but to seek answers from a madman. That didn’t mean she had to be civil. “This is your penance for what you did to those girls.”
“Please. I want to sleep again. Just a few winks. It would be so sweet.”
“Under the revealing rays of Aubade, there is no rest for the wicked. And you are among the most wicked who has ever walked beneath it.”
“Sounds like you were practicing that line in case we met again,” he said. “I’m flattered.” He stagger-stepped toward her like a drunkard, but his gaze stayed focused. “If there will be no rest for my body, at least help ease my mind. Do you have the talismans?”