Alex Hogg faces a simple choice as she reaches her 16th birthday: journey south across the country and bring back a relic from the cursed city of Glass and Bone, or spend the rest of her life in shame and poverty under the cruel hand of Spearheart, her adoptive father. The prize? She stands to inherit his entire fortune, from the fertile fields he owns to the lucrative mining and coal trade with which he controls the feudal lands around him.
But the way is dangerous and she cannot hope to make it safely there without a guide. When a chance meeting with a mysterious Dalesman known only as Bear provides her with one, it sets Alex Hogg firmly on her quest, confident that she'll return to claim her inheritance and enjoy riches beyond her imagination.
But this giant of a man has a past that's marked by the Old Days, the time before when mankind teetered on the brink of destruction, and it's this past that Alex soon learns stands directly in her way. An army is being built and rumors are rife that an ancient vault has been opened; that a new world order is being born that will see the weapons of a forgotten past used to create a terrifying new future. Strange ships are flying again and weapons that can kill from far away are being used to force villages and towns into submission. Behind it all is a man from Bear's past who, as their journey takes them deeper into his plans, threatens to bring about a new apocalypse for a people who barely survived the last.
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