Four years have passed since the lillipads fell and Etyom slipped into darkness. The New Black Death has mutated again, spreading to near epidemic proportions. What little order existed in Earth's last city has disintegrated into chaos. Rippers roam the Vapid, robbing and leaving their victims butchered. The Robusts have spilled out of their broken enclaves and hide in any dark corner that will conceal them. Meanwhile, the elite Graciles, fallen from their pristine towers in the sky, have all mysteriously disappeared. Demitri is a prisoner in his own mind. His demon, Vedmak—now known as the Vardøger—is manipulating Demitri's body to execute a secret plan far more disastrous than even the Gracile Leader dared. Mila, her status among the fractured resistance elevated to that of Paladyn—a protector of the people—leads the fight against zealots intent on destroying what little remains of Etyom. It is a responsibility she never wanted, a calling that prevents her from doing what she truly desires. Yet, Mila should be careful of what she longs. Caught between annihilation and loyalties that refuse to die, she must reconcile a single immutable truth: following your heart comes at a price.