Returning home, Ilan finds nothing is as she left it. After a year of peace, Skeltai raiders are once again threatening the province, even as the Dimmingwood thieves find themselves betrayed by the praetor. From within the castle in Selbius Ilan must guard against an unknown enemy plotting her assassination, while uncovering a mage’s secret that could help her protect the province. When old friends turn against her, will a new alliance prove powerful enough to defend against the dark magic of the enemy? Or will the coming battle be Ilan’s last?