Jared is a pleasure slave, one who turned on his owner, and killed her. So he’s now at the slave market, sure he’ll be sent to the Salt Mines, when what he at first thinks is an even worse fate finds him.
The Grey Lady, Queen of the neighboring land of Dena Nehele, has come to the slave market, and she buys Jared. All that Jared knows is that no one that has ever gone to Dena Nehele has ever come out again. But, things aren’t particularly going well in Jared’s own land, which is slowly coming under the influence of Dorothea SaDiablo, who will stop at nothing to gain power over all lands, including killing her most powerful enemy, the Grey Lady.
The Grey Lady is given enough warning of Dorothea’s attack that she and the slaves she’s bought are able to escape over the mountains. The more that Jared travels with her and the others, the more he realizes that things are not what they seem.
This is a prequel of sorts to the Dark Jewels trilogy I read a few years back. It’s a really interesting world and system of magic. I happened across a few more books, used, so I’m looking forward to seeing more of this world.