Against the backdrop of the rugged Sangre de Cristo Mountains, aspiring diva SYLVIA MAZZONI hopes to combine her Santa Fe Opera debut and a romantic reunion with her lover, Washington attorney ROLF KELLER. But Rolf’s old nemesis from law school, CHARLES SLATER, now an archaeologist, intrudes on their tryst. He is on the run from ruthless antiquities traffickers, who are after his recent find of prehistoric Indian artifacts.
After Slater vanishes under suspicious circumstances, Rolf plunges into the New Mexico wilderness to search for him and his priceless cache. Soon, he finds himself in desperate flight not only from the guns of the murderous smugglers, but from the FBI as well.
When the soprano slated to sing Tosca develops vocal problems, opera management drafts Sylvia as a last-minute replacement. While struggling to convert the daunting challenge into the career triumph she has pursued all her life, she and Rolf are threatened by the smugglers who will stop at nothing to get their hands on Slater’s hoard.
As they unravel the twisted clues Slater left behind, Sylvia and Rolf stumble upon the intriguing legend of a shaman’s young daughter, TEYA, who played a crucial role in the Pueblo Indian Revolt of 1680 against the Spanish oppressors and perhaps concealed the treasure of a lost pueblo.
Now, three centuries later, the paths of Teya, Sylvia and Rolf are about to cross in this riveting historical thriller involving archaeological crime, southwestern history and grand opera.