RHIZ (16) was on the verge of running away from home. Graveport, a former slave colony, is a lawless sky pirate haven, neighboring an indigenous necropolis, Myktla, where magic grave flowers are harvested for their healing and hallucinogenic pollen and nectar. Rhiz was born dead, and supernatural powers traded her mother’s life for hers. Her father, POP, is a colonist burying his grief in drugs, working for the dealers. Her mother was an orphaned native mystic, experimenting with the powers of the grave flower. Rhiz has been allowed to serve as a novitiate at Myktla but is still treated as a “cursed” outcast with a deadly power she does not understand, shunned by the colonials and natives alike.
Rhiz’ only friend was a massive Slayer bat, which died when she was six. At twelve, she was assaulted by a pirate, accidentally killing him with her mysterious power. Studying books on flying machines, Rhiz used spare machinery and the desiccated remains of the giant bat to build her escape craft. She was on the verge of mastering flight. Returning home – Graveport’s little library – for the last night before her escape, Rhiz finds the leaders of the sky pirates, THE CORVID CAPTAINS, gathered for a conspiratorial meeting.
The airship pirates profited from Graveport relatively harmoniously. Their leader ORTEROUS decreed the town was off limits from pillaging. The subordinate Corvid Captains have lured Orterous to the empty library to murder her, freeing them to plunder Graveport and Myktla for all they have, including the magic grave flowers. Pop and Rhiz are the only witnesses to the murder, and Rhiz is forced to report the pirate coup to the necropolis. She is pulled deeper into the Corvid’s plot as they discover she has access to the necropolis and use her father as leverage to keep her from running.
Using the power of the grave flowers, Rhiz can visit her dead mother’s memories, learning more about her parent’s aspirations for their daughter and the unification of their divided hometown.
Unable to abandon Pop or allow the pirates to destroy her mother’s dream, Rhiz convinces other victims of the pirates to join forces and fight back, learning the dark backstories of the Corvids, and making progress toward facing her own trauma in the process. She leads a surprise attack on one Corvid, narrowly overcoming superior firepower.
Revisiting Pop before the final battle, he has overcome his addiction, declaring love and pride in her, standing in defiance of the drug boss and sky pirates.
Rhiz and her motley team face off against the remaining Corvid Captains in an epic battle. The pirate captain who increasingly regrets betraying Orterous sides with the underdogs. Rhiz crashes onto the deck of the most ruthless Corvid and must embrace her frightening, supernatural power to defeat him while the rest of Graveport and Myktla unite to join her side of the battle. Victorious, Rhiz is shocked to find everyone looking to her for leadership. Thus, begins the legend of the Pirate Witch.
Ugh. You got stuck writing a synopsis. Help is on the way.
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