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1The ''Archonate'' series by Creator/MatthewHughes is a fantasy / science fiction series, set in the distant future of Earth. A {{Homage}} to Vance's ''The Literature/DyingEarth'', it takes place in the preceding aeon of Earth's history. Earth is united under the Archonate, a science-based civilisation. But there are signs that [[TheMagicComesBack the magic is starting to come back...]]²²There are several book series in the Archonate setting, each with their own protagonist: Luff Imbry, thief and confidence trickster; Henghis Hapthorn, freelance [[GreatDetective discriminator]]; Filidor Vesh, heir to the Archonate.²²!! The "Archonate" books make use of the following tropes:²* AfterTheEnd: In ''The Spiral Labyrinth'', Hapthorn is sent forward in time to after magic has returned.²* TheAlternet: The Connectivity, which seems to be roughly equivalent to planet-wide [=WiFi=].²* ApocalypseHow: The return of magic is, at the very least, Class 2 (Planetary Scale, Societal Collapse).²* BeginWithAFinisher: In ''Majestrum'', we see a flashback to a WizardDuel where one combatant begins by attacking with everything he's got, [[NoSell and doesn't have the slightest effect.]]²* BlondeBrunetteRedhead: One of the locations in the Commons is a beach, inhabited by a trio of friendly maidens who match this trope.²* {{Catchphrase}}: Hapthorn's is "It would be premature to say."²* CoolAndUnusualPunishment: One possible fate that awaits wrongdoers is being conscripted into the Corps of Buffoons, where they are forced to perform ButtMonkey parts in ribald plays.²* CoveredInGunge: ''Majestrum'' has a wizards' duel where the victor's first move is to humiliate his rival by spraying him with magically-conjured sewage.²* DespairEventHorizon: In "Fullbrim's Finding", learning the true nature of the Universe tends to leave the discoverer in a near-catatonic state of despair. Thanks to the pessimism instilled by his life as a private detective Hapthorn survives, but [[INeedAFreakingDrink in need of a stiff drink]].²* DreadfulMusician: An early plot thread in ''Majestrum'' involves the tone-deaf Chalivire Afre being convinced to sing at the Archon's levee. ²* ExpospeakGag: Hapthorn's florid prose frequently has these. For example, his description of travelling through another plane of reality:²-->This being my second experience, I purposely did not speak; the last time, in the shock of first encounter, I had reflexively voiced certain oaths. In a place where symbol and content were the same, my exclamations had caused the spontaneous appearance of a deity and left me smeared in an unwholesome substance.²* FairestOfThemAll: In one of the Hapthorn short stories a man wishes to be the richest, most intelligent, and most attractive person around. The being granting the wish responds by making everyone else poorer, stupider, and uglier.²* {{Familiar}}: Much to Hapthorn's annoyance, his portable computer has been transformed into a wizard's familiar. Fortunately it can still interface with normal computers. The transformation goes both ways; the Archon's computer is forced into the grudging admission that it began life as a familiar in a previous age of magic.²* FarSideIsland: The Commons, humanity's collective unconscious, contains numerous archetypes including a very familiar deserted island:²-->... a quiet Landscape that consisted of little more than a tiny patch of sand-colored rock, set in an endless ocean and shaded by a single Sincere/Approximate palm tree. No idiomat ever came there, and Bandar had often wondered what role the simple setting could have played in human history.²* {{Homage}}: To ''The Literature/DyingEarth''.²* HeroicSacrifice: In ''The Helper and his Hero'', the archetypes in the Commons include the Hero, whose various guises include the Sacrificial Hero. When Harkless appears in the Commons dressed as the Sacrificial Hero, Bandar worries that he is being forced into this role.²* HungryWeapon / TalkingWeapon: When Hapthorn was sent forward in time, he was carrying [[SmartGun an AI-controlled energy pistol]]. It's transformed into a magical sword that feeds on the life force of those it kills.²* IKnowYourTrueName: An important aspect of magic; the BigBad of "Majestrum" defeated his most dangerous rival by learning his true name.²* JekyllAndHyde: Downplayed, but present. Hapthorns normal self is rational, tempered, collected, hates needless suffering, is very cultured and etiquette-adherent, and is hesitant to offend without reason. His intuition alter ego is impulsive, prone to fits of rage, has a very strong morbid curiosity towards the atrocities mages can commit, is obsessive, and likes probing questions and disregarding stuffy social requirements. Downplayed because they both share the same sense of justice, and intuition directs his rage at furniture rather than people, so he can’t be truly called evil so much as “less polite, less moral”.²* JustBeforeTheEnd: Magic is starting to come back, and when it does, civilization will collapse.²* KingIncognito: The Archon frequently travels among his people in disguise. It tends to promote politeness to strangers, just in case the stranger in question turns out to be the Archon. ²* LeakingCanOfEvil: In the backstory of ''Black Brillion'', the Dree invasion of Earth was thwarted by a weapon that destroyed their invasion force, but left the area riddled with gravitational anomalies. As things turned out, some of their hive consciousness survived in one of the anomalies, and was able to enslave humans who came close enough to it.²* LotusEaterMachine: The BigBad of ''The Spiral Labyrinth'' traps Hapthorn in one, wherein he is raised to the rank of Margrave, appointed head of the Bureau of Scrutiny, and gets a fantasy love interest. When that doesn't get the desired results, the visions become a whole lot nastier.²* MacGuffin: Everything the MacGuffin family does.²* TheMagicComesBack: The new age of magic dawns in ''A Wizard’s Henchman''.²* OhCrap: In ''The Spiral Labyrinth'', Smiling Bol finally loses his SlasherSmile when the powerful and dangerous (and, as he soon learns, vengeful) being he's been trying to imprison is released.²* PentUpPowerPeril: In ''Majestrum'', part of the backstory involves a magical weapon built during a previous era of magic. When it was first activated, the resulting blast not only destroyed the Moon, but also killed the mages who'd originally been involved in building it. For untold centuries afterwards, the weapon remained, continually charging up. From time to time, someone would have to discharge it — at the cost of their life.²* POVSequel: ''The Helper and His Hero'' is ''Black Brillion'' retold from Guth Bandar's perspective.²* TheQuisling: The villain of ''Black Brillion'' has allied with alien invaders, hoping that he will gain power when they take over.²* RecruitingTheCriminal: ''Black Brillion'' opens with rookie cop Baro Harkless arresting a fraudster, Luff Imbry -- only for his superior to recruit Imbry into the force and assign the pair to tracking down Imbry's former partner.²* RedAndBlackAndEvilAllOver: In ''The Spiral Labyrinth'', magicians use two colours of magic, major and minor. The BigBad uses black and red. ²* ShaggyDogStory: Discussed in the short story "Fullbrim's Finding":²--> “You are familiar,” I began, “with the kind of story, allegedly humorous, that consists of a long and complex build-up, leading to some cave on a remote mountain peak, where the end of all the striving turns out to be no more than a deflating inanity?” \²“I am. And I will say that I never cared much for them.” \²“Well, it appears that they are a clue to the true nature of reality,” I said²* SharingABody: The magical event that gave Hapthorn a familiar also split his intuition into a separate personality who shares his body.²* SherlockHomage: Hapthorn (the name is intended to evoke "[[Creator/BasilRathbone Rathbone]]") is a hyper-rational loner GreatDetective.²* ShoutOut: In ''The Helper and His Hero'', Bandar recognises the Sacrificial Hero as originating from [[Literature/{{Beowulf}} an ancient story where the hero slays the monster and its mother]]. ²* SlasherSmile: Smiling Bol is so called because he always smiles. But not always in a friendly way.²* SuddenLackOfSignal: When Hapthorn travels into the future, one of the first things he and his familiar check is whether they can access the Connectivity. They can't.²* {{Whatevermancy}}: In "A Herd of Opportunity", the Eminence Malabar and his followers practise hydromancy - except that they're a splinter faction that uses urine rather than water as the liquid in question.

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