The mer slave Rane has managed to accomplish the impossible: escape. But true freedom remains elusive as long as the Draond Empire endures and the dragons remain gone. Rane must survive the wasteland to reach the mountains, where the elusive witch Naris lives. Naris is Rane's last chance at freeing the Yinn's, but all is not as it seems. The only true hope left is to find the dragons and free them - a task Rane must undertake alone. But far to the North, the High Overlord plots, preparing for the return of the dragons and what it might mean: the return of the Dragonlady. Yet he remains undefeated, for he has not forgotten the rules of the Balance: those who channel must choose. And not all choices lead to the paths of the dragons.