A band of fierce raiders invades a peaceful agricultural community called the Till, carrying off a young girl. Her brother Boon takes off in pursuit with a small force of loyal companions. As they traverse the wilderness in search of Boon's sister and the violent child-stealers, the rescuers discover that the old peace is vanishing and dark times are encroaching on the world.
An impetuous young woman named Temper heads up the security squad in the city ruled by her father, the Keeper of Wit. Today she's got her hands full chasing a mysterious thief and trying to keep trouble-makers from starting a riot. But Temper discovers that darker forces are also at work: Power-hungry conspirators are plotting to wrest control away from the Keeper, and it's up to her to stop them.