The Laundry series by Charles Stross

Just recently discovered these books and I’m now reading the second one – “The Jennifer Morgue” – which is giving me all sorts of awesome ideas for gaming. In the simplest terms, the main character is a British “operative” (though honestly, he’s just a tech guy who knows some spell stuff) who has been caught up in a “destiny entanglement geas” that is modeled off the Bond mythos stuff setup by the bad guy. The “Bond girl” in this question ends up explaining it to the main character late in the book like this:

“It’s not about you, Bob. It’s about plot. The way the geas works, he’s set himself up as the evil villain in this humongous destiny-entanglement spell targeted against every intelligence agency and government on the planet. The end state for this conjuration is that the hero – which means whoever’s being ridden by the Bond archetype – comes and kills the villain, destroys his secret floating headquarters, stymies his scheme, and gets the girl. But Billington’s not stupid. He may be riding the Villain archetype but he’s in control of the geas and he’s got a good sense of timing. Before the Hero archetype gets to resolve the terminal crisis, he ends up in the villain’s grasp under circumstances such that nobody else is positioned to deal with the villain’s plan. Ellis figures that he can short the geas out before it goes terminal and makes the Bond figure kill him. At which point Billington will be left sitting in an unassailable position since the only agent on the planet who’s able to stop him wakes up and suddenly remembers he’s not James Bond.”

This is brilliant to me and gives me a really neat idea for one of my Red Sky adventures. I’d already planned on having volume 8 taking place in an alternate “fantasy land” caused by a Fae Lady sort of rewriting reality around them, so it occurs to me that what I can do here is have her spell be wrought in such a way that there is a big honking loophole in it: she’s the Evil Queen who is terrorizing the land and there must be a Young, Untested Hero who must rise up to throw her down. And conveniently enough, there’s a PC in the group who fits that definition perfectly.

Yeah. That’ll work nicely…