No one ever said the long game would be easy.
In the wake of the Arcanum’s deadly coup, the magical community is left reeling. The murderous new grand magus has tightened his control over the world’s wizards, most of whom have no idea how many innocents were killed in his power grab. Those Fringers who escaped death or captivity—witches and lesser fae with only a modicum of talent to protect themselves—have fled to the wilderness or taken to the lonely roads, always fearing a wand at their back. With hundreds of hostages hidden somewhere within the Arcanum’s control, Faerie’s king and queen are faced with a difficult choice: risk losing the kidnapped or play the long waiting game.
But outside the Arcanum’s surveillance, its victims and opponents work to undermine its grip on the mortal realm. A ragtag rescue squad continues to scout for missing Fringers, and an amateur spy embeds himself in the sleepy town at the grand magus’s doorstep. The architect of the Arcanum’s protective wards desperately searches for a way to break them, while the refugees forced into exile just try to keep hope alive.
And the ancient consciousness of Faerie itself has taken an interest in a child glimpsed through the tiniest of holes between the realms—a little girl with the uncanny ability to make gates through the Arcanum’s impenetrable wards in her sleep.
But as the standoff continues, not everyone proves adept at picking up the pieces. And now, one of the most powerful leaders among them may be on the verge of unraveling, too…