In the peaceful realm of Tequende, all second-born children at the age of fifteen must journey to the Alcazar to fulfill the mandate of the Oath of Guilds. There they train to earn a place among the Queen’s legendary Second Guard, or work as indentured servants. Talimendra has always wanted to join the Guard, but there are dark rumors in the Queendom that she may not be ready for. Rumors that whisper of greed, traitors, and war. There is very little time and too many unanswered questions, but one thing is for certain: if there is a traitor among the Second Guard, then everyone-including the Queen-is in grave danger.