For years, Magiere and Leesil have sought a long-forgotten artefact, even though its purpose has been shrouded in mystery. All Magiere knows is that she must keep the orb from her murderous half-brother Welstiel, one of the deadly so-called Noble Dead. And now, dreams of a castle locked in ice lead her south - on a journey that has become nothing less than an obsession. Among Magiere's protectors are two elven assassins-turned-guardians who must fight their distrust of this sister of the dead. Forces more powerful than they are also rallying around Magiere, arming her for conflict. But finding the orb may be just the start of the dangers that await.