Genre: Upmarket psychological thriller with speculative elements and a full romance arc. The narrative is grounded in present-day North Carolina, and all characters are fully human.
– Aerin Barlowe, a millennial trauma surgeon with the ability to heal wounds and bring people back from near-death. She knows her magic is real, having performed it inadvertently as a child. But a sacred promise keeps her mum, and she doesn’t understand why–only that the world would no longer be a stable place to live if she fails to resist the urge to save people beyond using her medical skills.
– Daniel Julian, a millennial assistant district attorney named Special Prosecutor over an unusual serial killer case that connects him with Aerin. Aerin knows about some unusual deaths, having tried to save one victim but failing to do so (and refusing to use her magic). As it turns out, the killer has Aerin in his sights, too. In the right place at the right time, Dan unknowingly sweeps her away from the killer. He vows to get Aerin to safety and ends up falling for her.
– Luke Dillon, a former US Attorney-turned-recluse who lost everything to mental illness. He was Dan’s law school roommate and offers Dan a place to stay off the grid when the killer realizes that he needs to destroy Aerin. Luke has a dangerous secret, too–a fact that Aerin realizes too late.
– Marc Suarez, a well-regarded nurse and Aerin’s best friend forever. A lover of hot men and fancy cocktails, Marc would do anything for those he cares about. But he can’t protect Aerin. Not this time. Marc is in a competition with the killer to find Aerin when she and Dan go off-grid.
Premise: When a cult killer murders Aerin’s surgical patient, making him #4 in a string of numbered bodies, Aerin must uncover the sordid secret behind the sequence of deaths before her number’s up, too.
Theme: Do doctors kill? Ever?
What would Aerin be willing to do to defend herself and stay alive, and what (and who) would she sacrifice in the process?
Plotting was done using Save the Cat! structure.