#2 is here: http://agentquerycon...opsis/?p=339286
Great googlimoogli, another new genre (the synopsis) to learn in order to sell an entirely different and more comfortable genre (the novel). This is my first attempt. Be gentle. Be thorough, but... I know it stinks and I need your help. Oh... and thank you.
For 300 years the Order of Eye and Cloud stood as one of The Pillars of Peace. The methods of the Eyes induce the cloud, the Nephos, a clairvoyant perspective crucial to keeping the peace, also handy when peace got messy.
Ten years ago Cyril Kol discovered and revealed a corruption at the heart of his own Order. Though he knew his revelation would undermine civilization and endanger his family, he felt integrity demanded he bare witness. The Collapse ended civilization. Now the world is in ashes and Kol’s wife and child are dead. In hiding, Kol drinks to ease his conscience and no longer meddles in the affairs of the world.
One day Kol receives a package that suggests his wife and child are, in fact, alive and in hiding in one of the Spirit Rooms - the sacred chambers where Oracles abide and ply their trade. While scouring the land in search of Spirit Rooms, Kol rescues a young runaway courtesan-in-training named VEEPA by outwitting her captors, the highwaymen HALSEY DAMERAST and JOSHO BUN LEE.
Along with Veepa, Kol rescues a renegade scholar, MATHER, and a desperate madam, MRS. DOLZACS. Veepa and Dolzacs are on the run from a nefarious crime lord, HOK, boss of the Black Feathers Gang, to whom Veepa is a fortune.
Reminded of his own child, Kol promises to keep Veepa safe.
Sensing a kind spirit in Halsey, Kol brings him along with Veepa, Mather and Dolzacs to a nearby town. Having used his remaining booze to get the bandits drunk, Kol is desperate to find more. Without liquor, Kol is overwhelmed by his guilt and can not filter the Nephos.
But when Veepa and her companions fail to return from town, the incapacitated Kol sends the finally sober Halsey to fetch them. Halsey discovers that the town is ruled by religious zealots that plan to hang Veepa and her companions. Halsey rescues them, only to be knocked unconscious by Mrs. Dolzacs as revenge for their prior abduction.
Knowing he is going to need help rescuing Halsey, Kol allows Halsey’s more vicious partner Josho to discover his whereabouts. Josho, Halsey, and Kol form an alliance of convenience and defeat the combined force of the town’s posse and a contingent of the Black Feathers.
Josho then turns on Kol, but Halsey jumps in front of the bullet. Kol turns Josho over to the town. The violent episodes make Kol realize that the only way to keep his promise to Veepa while still searching for his family is to teach Veepa the ways of Eye and Cloud.
Josho, meanwhile, is spared the gallows by one of The Silence, a genocidal expeditionary force with loyalty to no one. The Silence conscript Josho into their ranks as a servant until their commander, COLONEL HAVERN BYRN, discovers the bandit had a run in with the Eye Cyril Kol. Byrn is hell bent on capturing the Eye and makes a pact with Josho to do just that. To ensure loyalty, the pact is sealed by Byrn lacing Josho’s blood with a poison, the antidote to which is Byrn’s own blood. Now Josho depends on Byrn for his life and is effectively his hunter-slave.
As Josho tracks them, Kol teaches Veepa about the methods and history of The Order of Eye and Cloud. In turn, he discovers that her singing soothes his episodes of crippling guilt and overwhelm.
With Halsey near death due to the bullet he took from his friend, Kol decides to seek out the WILLOWS, an encampment of witches and warrior women where he knows there is a Spirit Room. To find them he enlists the aide of SILAS, an outcast warrior from one of the Wister-Han Clans. Kol is wounded in a battle between a small contingent of The Silence and a sizeable number of the Wister-Han.
The Willows witch, CAPIRA, nurses Kol and Halsey back to health and allows the party to stay until the new moon, when Spirit rooms all over the world are able to commune with one another. If Kol’s wife is in a Spirit Room, the new moon will reveal where. However, Kol knows that the Silence will stop at nothing to apprehend or kill him.
Waiting for the new moon, puts Veepa, her friends, and the Willows in danger. Leaving would spare them but forfeit his chance to find his wife and child. When last presented with a similar choice, Kol opted for integrity. It caused The Collapse. This time he opts for family. Deciding to wait for the new moon, Kol does what he can to teach the Willows how to fight using the methods of Eye and Cloud. Halsey falls in love with BESS, the martial leader of the Willows.
Kol runs out of time. The Silence come before the new moon. Though they do repel The Silence, many of the Willows die. A pitched battle culminates with Kol and Byrn fighting to a draw. But in the melee, Byrn slashes open Veepa’s cheek, Bess is killed, and the Oracle is lost. Kol has sacrificed the Willows as well as Veepa’s ability to sing and gained nothing.
The Eye loses his mind.
Wracked by renewed guilt and and anguish, the Nephos overwhelms Kol. He lets go of hope and gives in. His surrender carries him deeper into the Nephos than he has ever been, deep enough that he will likely never find his way out. While there Kol finds that time and space open to him and he learns the location of his wife and child. But this is a cruel revelation as he understands he is lost in the Cloud.
Beyond hope, he is brought back from the Nephos by Veepa who, despite her freshly stitched cheek, sings Kol back to sanity.
As those who can recover from their wounds, Kol discovers the battle helm of the Silence filters enough sensations to allow him to not get lost in the Nephos and no hangover to boot.
Though the cost has been high, Kol now knows where his family is hiding. The trials that Veepa and the rest of his allies have endured has brought them close and given them each a purpose and they vow to help Kol find his family.