The imperial curse—the ultimate judgment on traitors Condition in Imperial Soulmates | World Anvil

The imperial curse—the ultimate judgment on traitors

Welcome to Imperial Soulmates! In a gigantic and futuristic fantasy empire filled with solarpunk magitechs, Hélène is hiding that she's one of the emperor's soulmates. However, to lift the legal curse on her best friend, she will have to blackmail the emperor himself... Come read about her plans, and the world in which she lives!
Introduction to the story | Hélène | Soulmates | Novel upcoming

Table of Contents

Legal curses are a punishment reserved for the worst criminals in the empire. Meant to be irreversible and to both make their recipient pay for their crime and to frighten others into behaving, they are cast by feared curser judges. However, there is a curse that is worst than any others, proportionate to the height of the worst crime possible: a betrayal of the emperor and of the empire. Appropriately, the criminals are cursed by the most senior judge and the most powerful mage in the country: the emperor himself.    
The curse
The best curses use numerology to strengthen themselves and sink deep in the bones and blood of their victim. Traditionally, 13 has always been a number associated with bad luck and pain and so it has popular with previous emperors.   However, the current emperor has broken away from tradition in favour of an unusual design that he is said to have conceived himself: a 3-folded 3-fold curse, made of 3 main components, each with 3 aspects. The interweaving ensures it is too intricately attached to the body of its victim to be removed.  
I. Physical component: Spams of pain:
  1. In their head,
  2. In their hands,
  3. In their feet.
  II. Mental component: Sleep troubled by nightmares making them relieve:
  1. Every little things they did wrong during the past day,
  2. The worse memories and mistakes of their life,
  3. Culminating with what they did to anger the emperor.
  III. Compulsions:
  1. A strong will to live through the pains and humiliations and to continue to go on no matter how hopeless life is so as to prevent suicide.
  2. An inability to lie directly so as to prevent any new scheming against the emperor.
  3. A push to always admit the existence of the curse when asked about it, to prevent them from hiding it.
Examples of cursed criminals
Julie's family betrayed the emperor and were consequently cursed by him. Julie herself is a rare example of inherited curse due to the emperor's anger overpowering it and making it sink too deeply in the body of her parents.
Julie winced and Hélène's eyes immediately honed in on her hands. Despite Julie's best efforts, she could not prevent them from shaking and from pain to crisp her expression. Hélène frowned but said and did nothing. This was already the second time this was happening.   Julie was obviously very used to the pain, for she struggled through without a sound and continued to twist her tool to shape the melted glass at the end of her stick, the shaking somehow not interfering at all with the results.   Hélène frowned. Julie was only in her thirties. That much pain so young was unnatural, and surely a healer should have been able to do something to help her if not cure her completely. She focused on Julie's hands, examining their tremors and the lack of any scars or evidences that could helped her guess as to its origin.   A suspicious slowly built in her.    She waited until Julie was done and had put the glass figure and her tool down before asking flatly, "What is going on?"
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Cover image: Curse by AmélieIS


Please Login in order to comment!
Dec 24, 2023 10:55 by Dr Emily Vair-Turnbull

Poor Julie. :(   Great punishment for traitors though. I like that it's not just lock them up and throw away the key.

Emy x   Etrea | Vazdimet
Dec 25, 2023 18:10 by Amélie I. S. Debruyne

You've got to give them time to really regret their crimes after all! XD But yes, poor Julie :( Luckily, Hélène is here to help her with her amazing plans to blackmail the emperor!   Thanks for your comment <3

Dec 24, 2023 17:07 by Elspeth

This is such an excellent / awful curse! It sounds like hell, and really demonstrates that there are worse punishments than death. And I love the idea of a legal curse. Great work!

Dec 25, 2023 18:18 by Amélie I. S. Debruyne

Thanks! <3 Yes, this futuristic society is very modern and proud of not killing criminals anymore and instead letting them go freely and continue to contribute to society :p

Dec 25, 2023 19:53 by Elspeth

Yes! Cursing them is definitely a very modern thing to do! XD I love it!

Dec 30, 2023 15:55 by Bart Weergang

This is evil Amélie :O

Jan 1, 2024 14:52 by Amélie I. S. Debruyne

Evil, from me? Surely not :p   Thanks for your comments <3

Jan 2, 2024 01:16 by Rachelle

Loved this as a look at the legal system that included a look at the negative - a little bit more about why they chose this system and potential positives of it would be nice. Overall a great idea!

Jan 2, 2024 08:08 by Amélie I. S. Debruyne

Thanks <3 I have a bit more about this in my article about curses and the legal system, but the main reason they've chosen to use curses is that they find this more human than execution and this allows criminals to be more useful to society than if they were in a prisons XD

Jan 20, 2024 20:33 by Tlcassis Polgara | Arrhynsia

You've got a very nice article here - I enjoyed reading it and followed your links through to the next couple articles! I'm looking forward to seeing this story develop more.

Follow my worlds: Arrhynsia and Compendium and check out my author website at to see my latest work!
Jan 27, 2024 15:50 by Amélie I. S. Debruyne

Thanks a lot! <3 The novel plotting is still at a very early stage, so there will be a lot more written in this world to help me!

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