Demoted war hero Jihan arrives in the Bluegrass to extend the Domed City's power and salvage his family's reputation. When a fellow official disappears, he commandeers a horseback caravan as backup and rides to the remote village of Tanglevine to investigate. Windland, the caravan leader, guides him through bewildering woods to a blighted village where only the locals' respect for Windland shields them from resentment. The savage killing of a young woman and her child provokes Jihan to vow justice, but deceived by the villagers, targeted by a hostile witch and seduced, then betrayed by an elusive dancer, he begins to suspect that Windland has an agenda of his own. Gradually Jihan realizes that instead of a hunter pursuing a murderer, he is the prey of a hunter far more ancient than he. If he cannot believe in the impossible it will destroy the woman he loves.