Zaeyen objects to the marriage her father has arranged for her, although she understands this is his way of helping the dukedom of Noor to survive. The groom threatens Zaeyen and she runs away to search for the elusive Eos. In the past these ghostly beings interacted with the land to keep it healthy and fruitful, but they disappeared over a century before and now the whole planet is dying.
Kade, a hero of the common folk, meets Zaeyen in the wilderness and is amused by her attempt to disguise her true identity. He realises she has no idea where she's going, and joins her to help or hinder, depending on the real reason for her journey. By the time he finds out the truth about her quest his emotions have become entangled with hers and he has no choice but to help go forward to find the Eos.
Thirst, hunger, capture - all these bar their way to success. It's not all bad, though, as their journey also brings them into contact with people who can help them in their quest. Will they find the Eos at the end of their journey and if they do, will the spirits be willing to return to the human world?
After supper, Croial invited her to take the air on the terrace. Several other couples had also taken advantage of the pleasant area but Croial waited until the music started and the others left to join in the next dance. He led Zaeyen to the far end of the terrace where they could not be seen by those inside.
"It's time you and I had a little talk about after the wedding." He sat on the wall dividing the terrace from the garden below. "You need to understand I will be the one in charge of our relationship. You will be the producer of heirs for the dukedoms."
"I beg your pardon?" Zaeyen couldn't believe he had said those words. "Noor is my dukedom not yours. You can do nothing without my approval."
"Oh you'll approve if you know what's best for you." His words were accompanied by a sneer which at other times would have made her smile at his childishness, but the expression in his eyes made her insides shiver with fear. "In future you will dress according to your station, which means not outshining me. I am the only one who will count in this relationship, not you. Do you understand?"
"How dare you?" Zaeyen couldn't contain herself any longer. "You stand there insulting me in my own castle and dictate what you believe I should and should not do. Forget it, Croial. The wedding is off!"
She turned to storm off and find her father, but his hand gripped her wrist like a vice.
"No it is not. You will marry me whether you like it or not. I will not be embarrassed by a nobody. You will marry me and provide heirs for me."
"If I refuse there's nothing you can do about it."
"Zaeyen, don't you know by now whatever I want I get. If you don't marry me, nobody else will want you. Not after you have a nasty accident which spoils any beauty you can lay claim to. I think I'd enjoy seeing what a sharp knife could do to you." He tilted his head to one side considering where to make the first cut.