Young Walter Scot is hot on the heels of cattle raiders in the service of the dark Lord of Soulis when he encounters his kinsman Michael Scot - and his life is changed for ever. Even in the turbulent Borderlands of the thirteenth-century Scotland Michael had a fearsome reputation as a magician and master of forbidden arts, trafficking with the demons of middle air. Now he has returned from years of exile with the Pope's pardon and the favour of the Emperor, a peaceful man of God - and yet strange events still follow him.
The mysterious fire that blasts the raiders. The fourth voice that laughs where only three men were seen. The luxury that suddenly appears to furnish his long-abandoned castle - the mystery about him only deepens.
But still darker forces are at work behind the bloody rivalries of Border politics, black sorceries stirring within the sinister castle of Hermitage. When Walter's father is ambushed and killed, his betrothed flung into a dungeon and his lands and his very life threatened by the necromancer-baron Soulis, Michael appears to offer the aid he desperately needs. Aid that, as Walter soon discovers, is almost as frightening as his enemies' threats - as he is transported to another world, ensnaring, enchanting, seductive. There he finds a new life, new heroism and a new, all-consuming love. But there is a terrible price he must pay...