The continuous harvest of atmospheric moisture by lunar orbiters foments a plan set in place to destroy the Harvest fleet, but it is derailed by a twist that allows time for development of a technological work-around. Time passes, and the ruling Houses are caught unawares by an invasion intended to wrest control of the Harvest. The interlopers are aided by wizard-like practitioners whose hallucinogen-induced evocations bend the norms of nature to their will.
Cairn, heir to Alar, is taken captive and then dispatched to carry the warlord’s edict. The Maester Viizar, Gezladorn, has his own agenda, contrary to that of the lunar warlord. The Maester is able to manipulate some of the players through mind-control, pitting them one against the other.
Cairn learns of a human-like species that has always kept to itself in the planet’s vast cavern system, and he leads a band of men and UnderWorlders on a subterranean journey to rise into the bowels of House Alar. Alliances fall apart and it becomes unclear who is the true enemy before Alar ultimately triumphs.