When Emerald Keeper Teeka returns to the city of Reghdad and leaves the harsh desert behind, he finds that not all dangers come from the Great Valley. The dangerous Daymonth is nearly upon them and no one can survive on the surface of the planet — but Senior Hunter Quill Mayer is trying to get to Reghdad, and Teeka, before the start of it. Even if he makes it, Emerald Keep denies Teeka’s Contract with Senior Hunter Quill, and Teeka discovers his enemy is more powerful than any of them suspected and he will stop at nothing to separate Teeka and Quill — even by striking in the very heart of the city.
The harsh desert world of Persis has developed its own customs far from Old Earth. Keepers are cherished as caregivers and helpmeets to Hunters. During Emerald Keeper Teeka’s first Contract with Senior Hunter Brant, disaster strikes. Brant is killed and Teeka is stranded, surrounded by strangers, and unsure of who to trust. A dark and moody Hunter steps forward with an offer of partnership and protection. Teeka wonders what motivates the scarred and solitary Senior Hunter Quill.
Both have hidden motives for agreeing, and both are suspicious of each other. But the Great Valley will force them to work together and build a trust born out of necessity and survival. Between the dangers of the harsh desert and the malice of a hidden enemy, Teeka and Quill must learn to believe in each other to find the truth.