The Enchanter. Historical Fantasy in the Vendée
Scheduled to be in three books, this novel recounts the intertwining adventures of two characters: Emile, or Milo, a peasant from the Vendée countryside, brought up by a priest open to revolutionary ideas, and Cornaud, or Beelzebub, from the Retz region, forced to go aboard a slave ship.
We follow them through the revolutionary torment of the years from 1792 to 1794. Historical figures such as Robespierre or Charrette mix with a crowd of secondary characters like Perrette, the woman Emile loves, Only-one-tooth, the sans-culotte from Nantes, Pierre-Marie, the young clerk from the marshes, the knight from Béjarre... and legendary beings: the fradets (elves), the snake-woman (a fabled serpent or the Fairy Melusine). It's also the end of a world and its archetypes. To the "Enlightenment" imposed by the Revolution, the Vendée will reply with a radicalisation of the religion affirmed by the Saint-Laurent-sur-Sèvre Mulotins, a starkly fervent Christianity that excludes any vestiges of the pre-Christian era forever.
1792 (Book one)
Revolt is brewing in the Vendée countryside, exacerbated by the attitude of the Assembly against the clergy.
Emile, a handsome young man, occasional lover of Louise, a married woman, gets a job for the season on a farm on the Luçon plain. He makes friends with Pierre-Marie, a young man from the marshes who is taking part in the formation of the clandestine Vendée army; Cornaud comes back to the region after more than two years of travels and adventures; he was bewitched by a voodoo doctor for having abused a young captive. Regularly gripped by sudden uncontrollable desires to kill, he takes up with Only-one-tooth, a member of the Saint Vincent revolutionary group, who suggests he join the ranks of the little troop he is organising to put pressure on the different assemblies of the town and of the department. From committing murders to escaping from justice, Cornaud takes refuge in Paris and takes part in the September massacres, while Emile meets strange little beings, the fradets, who seem to be there to help him and anticipate his wishes, and then a creature from the marshes, a serpent-woman, who gives him a dagger for him to carry out a mission: kill the spirit of evil that is running through the region.
During this time in Paris, the first machine to cut off people's heads is being assembled and plotting is rife.