Novel-in-progress from troper Yzabel, started in November 2010 for NaNoWriMo and providing, once again, its author with enough fun to be given a chance at knowing an actual ending.
Our Darker Purpose (written in French, though) is set in an alternate 19th century Great Britain in which steam technology works hand in hand with blood-powered magic, where the "Chosen Ones" (the mages) hold important positions and are viewed as saviours, and where the dead tend to come back, either as ghosts attached to objects or as souls put back into their own corpses. This world is also plagued by two phenomenons: the Dispersion (that causes entier parts of the world to vanish, both physically and from people's memories) and the Devourers, plants that have been taken over by corrupted ghosts and are now trying to infect soil, trees, animals, people and whatever living creature they can lay their roots on.The story follows Aidan Clarick, his wife Wilhelmina Wallenstein-Clarick and Wolfram Mc Alexander, their best friend, as they are put in charge of a new airship cruiser, HMS Edinburgh, and of its experimental weapon, the blood Impulser, able to erase entire zones from reality. Meant to get rid of the Devourers that have infected the soil of Scotland, this weapon is nothing short of terrifying. His soul poisoned by its dark magic, Aidan does his best to prevent Mina and Wolfram from ever touching it; her mind plagued by worries, Wilhelmina keeps on acting as a buffer between her husband and the government who wants to put the Impulser to more drastic uses; and Wolfram is cast between his loyalty to his friends and his own projects. All the while, in the background, the shadow of a mysterious organization only known as 'Dresca' is looming; what might their connection to the Devourers be?
Aidan Clarick: Newly appointed captain of the experimental battle airship HMS Edinburgh.
Wilhelmina Wallenstein-Clarick: Second-in-command on the Edinburgh, and Aidan's wife.
Wolfram Mc Alexander: Reanimator-in-chief on board the airship. Also Aidan's and Wilhelmina's best friend.
Simon Yeats: Engineer sent on board the Edinburgh to report about the Impulsion weapon.
Christian Sessington: One of Wolfram's friends in Scotland.
The Soul Thief: Strange person wandering the moors, and who might have something to do with 'Dresca'.
William Haven of Waldridge: One of the Claricks' descendants.
Charles V Stuart: Ruler of the Empire of Britannia.
His son, the Prince of Wales, Charles, Duke of Cornwall—and future King of Britannia.
Alone in a Crowd: Aidan and Mina, due to their power (and the responsibilities that come with it).
Amplifier Artifact: HMS Edinburgh's mass-destruction weapon. It's meant to amplify the Claricks' power, not to create it out of nowhere. Yikes.
Artifact of Doom: The Impulsion weapon does not possess a will of its own, but still has a nasty tendency to try to suck the soul of its controller through the blood s/he pours in. And you wonder why Aidan gets into BSOD-mode when he uses for the first time... or why he then doesn't want Mina to use it as well.
Bling of War: The Chosen One's military uniforms are a deep, crimson red—so that people see them clearly. It's not like the enemy (the Devourers) have eyes to search for them anyway, so colours don't matter.
Blood Magic: Blood is used to fuel a lot of spells in this world - either through traditional rituals or through blood-powered technology.
Technically speaking, it is an honest product, designed for the sole aim of allowing people to dream again, since they're unable to do so by themselves. Wilhelmina, however, pretty much uses it as a drug.
Also, at times, she drugs her husband without his knowing, for them to get high together while they're asleep.
Hero with Bad Publicity: Aidan, who doesn't give a damn about public opinion, and is respected for his actions, feared for his power, and shunned for not giving said public what they want to see and hear. All the more so at the end of the story.
Heroic BSOD: Aidan, the first time he uses the Impulsion weapon.
Since Mina remains all eyes for Aidan only, in a way, it borders on Mudering The Hypotenuse at some point. But Wolfram never carries this out, in spite of having had the opportunity every time Aidan was carried to the infirmary for a blood transfusion, among other things.
Improbable Piloting Skills: Aidan and Mina, who borrow a large-sized wing in the middle of a tempest to go frolicking in the skies. It does help to have the power to negate gravity and strong winds, though.