The fort of Witches' Reach, where the Aulians buried the Eyes of Time, lies firmly under Marroc control - but the Aulians built a second fort on the other side of the river overlooking Issetbridge. The fort is a ruin, having collapsed decades ago but that doesn't mean there aren't secrets buried underneath it. With Gallow already away and Arda and several of Valaric's men about to sneak into Issetbridge to steal a forge, it falls to Achista to accompany Oribas on his expedition to pry into this lost ruin.
In hostile territory, hiding from the forkbeards, Oribas and Achista find themselves embroiled in a Marroc uprising against the Lhosir of Issetbridge before Oribas finds a way into the half-collapsed chambers beneath the ruin of Dragon's Reach. Inside he hopes to find Aulian secrets; what he actually finds is something much more dangerous. . .