On a dark and dangerous road, a daring British adventurer saves the life of a countess of royal blood. In all his travels, Colonel Tyrone Rycroft has never encountered a woman as breathtaking, alluring, and inscrutably mysterious as the bewitching Synnovea. But his selfless bravery has drawn him into peril -- and into an inescapable web of intrigue and seduction. In an opulent and treacherous imperial court, the proud, headstrong lady's dashing champion has become a pawn in a dangerous game of power and influence -- and only his great courage and wits will enable him to survive it. But Rycroft's enflamed desire will not let him escape to the safety of his own world -- not until his dream is realized, and the enigmatic, highborn beauty has given herself to him freely, honestly, and forever.