Death is a strange thing. It is accepted wisdom that all living things will die. Death binds us all together, a cord stretching from the grave to every human being. Pauper and Prince, Priest and Heretic, Fool and Scholar, Soldier and Coward, all meet their End sooner or later. But, accepted wisdom does not always mean truth. Not all that lives dies; at least not at their appointed hour.
The Bound have already died, but they walk among us. When Death came for them they swore a bargain with their Geist. The Geist offered them a second chance in exchange for giving the Geist a chance to walk among the living again. The prospective Bound and Geist would share body and soul, and together they would walk among the living again.
When the Bound return with their alien passenger, they find that though they escaped death its cords still bind them to the living and the dead. With the caul of a new birth pulled from their eyes they see the stains of death everywhere. They hear the unquiet shades crying out, often driven mad by desire and isolation. The Bound become Sin-Eaters.
It becomes their responsibility to put these ghosts to rest. If not for their own good then to at least shut them up. It falls to the Bound to resolve the sins of the dead so they can move on to their final reward. Sin Eaters can be selfless heroes, comforting the bereaved and deceased in turn, healing old wounds, protecting the living from the dead, and punishing the wicked. They can also be thugs and extortionists, charging ‘consulting fees’ for removing unquiet shades they’ve installed in a mark’s house, using their powers to terrify and intimidate the living, prying secrets from dead lips and using them against the living. Or, they can fall somewhere in between.
No matter how they handle their second chance at life, a Sin Eater will invariably inherit the sins of past and current generations. Not just their own, their families, or their friends. They inherit the sins of their entire community and sometimes the sins of history long forgotten.
Inheritance takes place in the small coastal town of Pescadero, CA. Philamela Stavros’s distant uncle Alexis Demetriadis left here a large estate in the forests of Pescadero. Philamela was raised in the affluent town of Atherton, CA. She was quiet and an artistic prodigy. She had a twin sister who died young of cancer. Philamela stayed with her twin throughout the ordeal and eventually fell to using her sisters pain killers to cope with the pain. When her sister died of the cancer, Mela died of the heartbreak. Mela belongs to a krewe comprised mostly of former students she knew from Sacred Heart High School.
Reginald Banks II, Reggie, rebelled against his moneyed lifestyle the best he could. Wearing designer torn jeans, aged leather coats, and playing in a punk band. When that wasn’t enough, he turned to drinking and drugs. That was when his family cut him off from his trust fund. In order to get some scratch together he conspired with his friend Quincey Pierce to fake Quincey’s kidnapping and extort money from his family for his safe release. Quincey had always enjoyed his social status his family’s wealth and prestige afforded him. Even so, he had always felt an emptiness inside of him and has always been too afraid to confront it. Quincey died of exposure while waiting for ‘rescue’ in a ramshackle cabin on the San Mateo Coast. When Reggie found his friend cold and lifeless he followed him to the grave.
Timothy Xiu was the drama teacher at Sacred Heart. He was also a Sin Eater and had been for some time. He ran with a krewe called Los Muertos Fiel. Eventually, so did Reggie and Quincey. Unfortunately Quincey had a falling out with the leadership of the krewe who ordered his death. As many times as it took. Mr. Xiu was the one ordered to carry it out. He failed and Reggie and Quincey escaped. Now, Mr. Xiu is on the run from his old associates and must find shelter among those he tried to kill.
Cassandra and Lawrence Henderson were raised in the city of East Palo Alto, CA. Though desperately poor, their family encouraged their children to do their best with the promise that if they did good things would happen to them. They both earned scholarships to Sacred Heart. Cassandra graduated and went on to a scholarship to study at San Jose State University. During her years there she stumbled upon secrets hidden in books that hinted at deeper conspiracies running through the fabric of society. As she tried to unravel these conspiracies she was crushed by a heavy bookshelf deliberately pushed on her. Her brother in his junior year was drowned in a hazing prank at the school. Someone forgot to flush while giving the swirley. His sister withdrew Lawrence from Sacred Heart for his senior year.
Mela, Reggie, Quincey, Cassie and Lawrence have moved to the large estate finding that it has been there since the Missions worked their way up the California coast. It has been rebuilt several times and holds a number of secrets and inconsistencies. Together they’ll find out just what they’ve inherited by accepting this mansion and moving to a surface sleepy town on the California coast.