Vatis, the Prince of Actaris, a country in the grip of a rebellion, has been kidnapped. Pinned to the Palace door is an ominous message, claiming that the elusive Bandit Lord Kyord has taken the Prince. The Bandit is seeking payment of a sizeable ransom in return of the secure release of the Prince. The Prince's desperate father, King Yakunys, gathers together a group of the most promising recruits from the King's Guards. They are tasked with taking the ransom to Kyord's territory, and his hidden fortress, and bringing the Prince back safely. Now, they just have to avoid the patrols of Yordin, the leader of the rebellion tearing the kingdom apart, and the dangers of the backroads. In Sahasra, the capitol of Actaris, a promising Initiate in the King's Guard is stabbed by an exotic knife, and Yunmyr Shaymuun, a trainer in the King's Guard, is charged with investigating. But his investigation uncovers a conspiracy, which is, possibly, a prelude to an invasion.