March: Awakened

March’s project is Awakened. It has been bothering me nearly constantly. I’ll be writing it and editing and doing more writing for His Wings, Crop, Seed, and Harvest.

Most of that would be on my phone, is how it’d be done. I downloaded Grammarly’s keyboard for my phone. I just couldn’t handle the stupidity of the default keyboard.

Why does Kaz turn to Lax sometimes, Las other times? Why does fire turn into spit? Really? Really?

Anyhow. Awakened is a fantasy based in a high fantasy world after humans have killed the mortal races and the elves have all gone to sleep or disappeared. Every human is capable magic, but only a few ever get access to their magic.

So, it’s sort of like the elves and humans traded magic use, I guess?

It is set in the modern era, where pretty well all the same stuff has been created but at a faster pace because as mages became fewer, humanity built tech to replace what had once been done.

Just anyone can be awakened so there are taxes and fines on magic use and there are mage schools and patrons for the awakened. If an awakened doesn’t use their magic they end up burning out. Dying from lack of releasing magic is as familiar in awakened as starvation or exposure deaths in the homeless. But the taxes are kind of obscene, and the Mark usually empties a savings account.

It’s becoming fashion to give new parents money instead of gifts, so they can put it into a Mark account in case their child ever awakens. A child is more likely to have money saved for a Mark than for college.

Those who cannot pay are just like those who can’t pay bills. Though, it is dependent on what their magic can do. Some are offered jobs, but magical prisons are expensive. It’s not uncommon to find awakened among the numbers of the homeless. They offer their services in exchange for a few dollars, begging for both magic fines as well as food.

There is religion in the world, and an old sect called the Paladins who do mysterious things. The only way to become a Paladin is to be raised within the group. You can ‘join’ them so that your child has a chance to become a Paladin but then you’re referred to as a breeder. The Paladins understand that new blood is super important to the health of all but they look down on those who are called to the life and haven’t served.

Patrons have, at times, taken advantage of their mages. But for the most part human on mage violence doesn’t happen. An awakened is more likely to cause accidental death than a mage. And the difference between an awakened and a mage is years of training.

So when bodies start turning up, when mages are found with all their magic scooped out, the Magical Protection Agency sends the only man they think capable of hunting down a mage killer: Dave Archon, fourth son of the seventh son of the leader of the Paladins and the only one in six hundred years to be offered the knives and walk away. He’s got the pedigeee, the knowledge, and has even fought in both a magical and physical war and survived.

Our female MC is a newly awakened Abby Kestrel, a waitress with barely enough income to pay her bills. She is a nobody, her family has no history of awakening, and she knows about as much about magic as she does about brain surgery.

One would think discovering you had magic would be a blessing, that everything would fall into place. But this isn’t a fairy tale, and even though the world has magic and believes fate is real, none of them are so blinded by the magic to believe in true love or happy endings.

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