Brastigan knows it well enough; he is 13th in line for the throne, and he is bored. A misfit and rogue, Brastigan keeps busy drinking and fighting, until one day he nearly dies in a brawl. Was it an accident -- or attempted murder? Before he can find out, Brastigan is packed off on a "noble quest" to find the sorceress Yriatt, who may be able to answer his questions. With him goes Lottres, his half-brother and life long friend.
But Lottres has his own reasons for wanting to see Yriatt. His secret threatens to tear their friendship apart. Meanwhile, their sister Therula waits and worries about her lover, Pikarus, who went with the two princes on their quest. She alone realizes that Crutham has been infiltrated by forces of darkest sorcery. It's a race against time in this story of romance, treachery and the bond between brothers.
Only Brastigan, who doesn't fit in anywhere, can thwart the secret traitor -- and maybe find out where he truly belongs.