A Southern-Gothic, Medieval Fantasy
The inspiration for this story came from a very unlikely place. The Medieval understanding of the cosmos.
Reading about the Medieval “Model” and the way their literature was ornate and full of meaning and symbol lead me to realize that an authentically medieval story, didn’t need to have castles and dragons to be really “medieval”, it simply needed the “Model”, which was basically their mindset or world-view. (I’ve written a couple of articles about this)
The “Vault of Silence” is basically the beginning of an experiment, based on the conviction that you can have a Medieval story, without the Medieval aesthetic. Instead, my love for turn-of-the-century American folklore has filled in the aesthetic gap, and encroached a little into the Model of my story. So what you end up with is, what I would call, a Southern-Gothic, Medieval Fantasy story.
The story takes place in ‘last inhabited town on earth’, the town of Perifery, on a misty island in a black ocean. Perifery has been under the guiding hand of “the College” since they settled there, after the mysterious event of the “Reckoning”.
Rafael is a boy of the island. He lost his first and only love to the sea, and now is apprenticed to her father, an alcoholic ex-sea captain who is haunted by an unquenchable conviction and an undying guilt. Rafael shares his contemplative nature with another boy of the town, Amery, who is his truest friend; though his knack for thievery and his sharp wit often gets them into a mess of trouble.
When a prophetic hermit meets an uncanny death, Rafael and his friends begin to suspect the world they had been taught to accept is not the true world. Their reality begins to turn inside-out as they discover what’s really been going on in the woods, and behind the closed doors of the College. As the voice of a ghost guides Rafael, he begins to wonder why he recognizes her voice; and what could she mean by the “Helm of Nations”?
Rafael has no choice but to open his eyes to a different reality, and the real world is nothing like he’d ever imagined.