(Forthcoming speculative fantasy, now seeking beta readers.)
John Finnegan (Finn) lives in a clockwork world rigidly controlled by a minor deity named, of all things, Fate. There are many worlds and many Fates, but this one is a bit more hands on in his “foretell the world’s events” approach, basically, by writing those events ahead of time in the Book of Fate and making everyone else follow along. Everyone knows about Fate, and everyone has their individual fate-parts handed to them every morning. There’s a massive and ludicrous bureaucratic machine that ensures The Book of Fate is enacted exactly as Fate himself wrote it, every actor reading their lines and standing in their proper spots, all to a purpose no one but Fate himself knows.
Except for Finn. For a reason unknown to him, Finn isn’t in the Book of Fate. He’s been faking it the whole time, and he knows how to do it. Yet other people with perfectly written parts seem to react to him as if he belongs there. It’s almost as if the Book of Fate has been hijacked, and Finn surreptitiously inserted within it.
Soon Fate and his minions discover something odd about Finn, forcing him to escape behind the scenes, into the heart of Fate’s bureaucracy. He meets other people on the loose behind the rigid scenery of Fate’s Story. But they’re not like Finn. They’ve never had parts written for them. They’re from outside Fate’s Story entirely, and Fate tolerates them for reasons no one can understand.
They’re worried about Finn. And they should be. Because his very existence means Fate’s tidy clockwork world is under assault from an outside force.