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While in Faerie with his partner, Gaylord Silvertoes, Mortimer of Hamelyn is put under a sleep spell by Gaylord's sister, Fiona. The spell causes him to relive events in the life of his uncle, Gabriel, whose abusive, homophobic behavior has estranged him from his nephew. Mortimer's feelings are complicated by the fact that Gaylord was severely wounded protecting Gabriel from a shotgun blast. Mortimer gains new compassion for his uncle when he discovers that Gabriel has buried an ugly, painful secret from his own childhood, which warped his personality and blighted his relationships with all around him. Mortimer feels Gabriel's childhood pain acutely and begins to understand his uncle's behavior. Meanwhile, Fiona has placed Gabriel under the same spell, so he gets a first-hand understanding of Mortimer's deep love for and attachment to Gaylord. He feels his nephew's pain and bewilderment. Both men grow from the experience, reaching a place where they can begin to heal their estranged relationship.