Sinister changes are afoot in Arash-Felloren. Pinnatte, the street thief, has been marked, literally, for a fearful destiny. Imorren, the first woman to lead the Kyrosdyn -- the crystal workers -- has secretly ordered the transfer of the Jyolan Fighting Pits to Barran, the mercenary who controls most of the crystal trade. It will give him great power in the huge and ancient city. But why would Imorren do this? And why would she bring to the surface a creature from the caves deep below the city -- a creature of ancient myth? Then, in a tragic confrontation with a Kyrosdyn novice, Atlon, a Learned Brother from a distant land, travelling with his companion Dvolci, learns how the crystals are being used. The revelation sets him on a terrifying path -- Imorren's plans are far beyond any mere seeking for political power in the city. Atlon, deeply afraid, knows that she must be stopped. But he cannot enlist the help of his Elders. Nor even warn them. He must oppose her alone...
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