The legendary Pact of Bakharas has been broken, and daemon and dragon-kind are free to make the world of Shandahar a battleground in an epic struggle that was begun before written time. Meanwhile, Damaeris 'Aeris' Timberlyn has been burdened with the task of persuading a young talent to return to Elvandahar and pursue his education in the art of dimensionalist magic. Accompanied by her brother, Alasdair, and their companions, Aeris travels across the continent of Ansalar in search of him.
Just as they reach their destination, trouble arises back home, and Alasdair is forced to return. Under the protection of the sorcerer Magnus Larenchir, Aeris is allowed to remain and bring the boy talent under her aegis. However, danger is afoot, and Aeris and her companions are attacked by the daemundai, a powerful cult dedicated to daemon-kind. They are in search of something, crystalline artifacts that may aid them in their fight against dragons. One of the crystals is in Aeris' possession.
In order to escape, the companions take to the sea. It is there the real adventure begins.
Blood poured out of the fatal wound . . . she didn't know how long she lay there. Her heart slowed . . . and she saw the small crystal. She felt the last of her blood drop onto the shard. Darkness enveloped the dragon's vision. She suddenly thought that mayhap she should be afraid.