Megan has arrived at Arakur, seat of the secretive Darkspawn lord know as Alsheer; meanwhile Anabel has escaped Briar, stronghold of the slaver Grik, and fled into the night with new friend Merith.Having tracked the two young women to Ash, the Pathfinders face a dilemma. It has become clear that the captives have been separated and are now being held in different locations. Forced to split their group, Brok continues with his mission to rescue Princess Megan, while Tam is ordered to find Anabel.As the Eastern Alliance near the borders of Jarro, Eastgate braces for the inevitable attack. As the storm approaches, Ben Preem stands ready. It is a time for death or glory…a time for blood and fire…
Having crossed the wide expanse of Lake Myre the Pathfinders at last find themselves shipwrecked on its eastern shore.Anabel's return to Jarro at the head of the Free Slave Army has turned the tide of the war in favour of the western kingdom. Megan has fallen into the hands of the cannibal witch Silvene. Imprisoned in the witch's tower, she awaits her fate with growing trepidation. Ben Preem stands ready for the next phase of the war. Kan-Ta has been saved but The Horde are still a dangerous foe. For the first time in many years the Jarrian army is on the offensive. Now all that he needs to do is find out where the enemy has gone, and destroy them."Like the shepherd upon his mountain rock, the Gatekeeper stands and guards the lock... " Anon
Having escaped the clutches of the Hag Silvene, Megan has been recaptured by Darkspawn lord Alsheer, and resumes her journey toward Bal-Karesh.
Anabel has been left distraught at the loss of her friend Merrith and vows to do anything to aid her release from a fate worse than death, marriage to slave-master Grik.
Brinn is entangled in a war not of his choosing in Timberland North, but feels compelled to help his Dwarf friend Helfwen regain the High King’s throne. But the sickness grows ever worse, and Balzimar has to watch helplessly as his young acolyte falls deeper into the abyss with each accidental use of the latent magic running amok through his body.
Ben Preem sits outside the walls of Mabak-Var awaiting a resolution to the conflict that has plagued mankind for a generation. When Regent N’Dhun offers honourable terms for surrender, Overlord Imrit must make a tough decision. A decision that will have profound consequences for all of Mankind.
The Karesh are ready to take back what was once theirs. But when Ultor consults the Seers the message is mixed. Though he is shown great victories for his army, there is also danger. The mysterious Northman, as ever, stalks the edges of prophesy, his presence casting a cautionary shadow over all. The Karesh warlock has carefully placed his pieces upon the chessboard; now it is time for his next move.Heave -ho, me hearty lads, heave-ho.Furl sail and run for home.‘Twixt thunderous cloud and rising tide.And mind the Maelstrom, berth her wide.Or rest yer bones to windward side.To ne'er again see smiling bride.Heave-ho, me hearty lads, heave-ho.("The Widow's Wheel."Ballad, circa 325 Mur-ro.)