Reality settles over Astra and her fellow apprentices in the form of active hatred of Wizards by Plain folk everywhere. That hatred is expressed without violence on Wizard’s Reach, where Plain have long been treated as equals; on the Amedian Mainland, though, violence against those Wizards who still live — the old and retired, as well as the young, abandoned children of the slain Wizards — is become rife.
As the sole group of Wizards still in contact with Magic, through Astra, the apprentices have no choice but to mount a rescue effort for all those Wizards, young and old, who stand threatened by Plain violence.
But angered Plain folk are not the only threat: A colder winter than anyone can remember also shadows a World where there is no Magic to light heating fires. Since the youngest and the oldest who are most susceptible to such cold, the apprentices are forced to move fast in their rescue efforts … at the peril of their own lives … before there is no one left to be saved.