Change has come at last to the Sevolite empire The conservative Demish of Lion House want it stopped — now! Ilse Marin is a middle-class leader of a merchant house who gets embroiled in the business of her betters to help pay the bills, and winds up falling for the most dangerous man in the empire - Horth Nersal. Horth’s bright idea about using commoners to deal with Reetions under Sword Law winds up in a stand off in space, fleet to fleet with Lion House. Back on Gelion, Erien’s new academy breaks out in plague. Amel, meanwhile, must win his way back into the parlors and reception halls of the Silver Demish if he wants to have an influence politically, and to do that he has to overcome his reputation as the Courtesan Prince - via poetry.