Lord Micalus Raventower is a genius at creating clockwork creatures and tinkering with steampunk engines, but that doesn’t explain why Atiran assassins are suddenly intent on killing him. Lt. Merriweather is assigned to protect Lord Raventower, a role she initially resents since it takes her away from the castle and any chance of advancement to the King's Guard.
Trouble is brewing for the city of Kamere. Atrian warships stand off the coast, and there are enemies even within the ranks of the nobility itself. Merriweather and the eccentric young lord will have quite a job keeping him alive as well as hiding his more unusual secrets. She soon learns there may be very good reasons for the Atrians to want Lord Raventower dead.