The world is tearing itself apart, and Kier Vorsmith is the only one willing to destroy it in the hopes of building a better one. He has finally gained freedom for himself after his latest experiences with governmental deception and familial betrayals. However, as an out (one who can control the minds of others), even his freedom is guided by the eyes of the emperor. Captain Dark has gone to great lengths to lure Kier into a high-power post, convincing him that his freedom and morals are unimportant when compared to the agenda of the emperor.
Lada Dragwlya has claimed Wallachia as her own since birth. It is her homeland, the place where her ambition was fostered and her spine of steel cast. After being taken from and left in an enemy empire by her father, Lada's life is one of survival: she must return to Wallachia. However, for all her physical fierceness of unbeaten record of fights, the force of the Ottoman Empire is not something she can win over by simply slashing a sword at it.
Before the onion ring accident, Santi had a father who taught him to survive in the woods and an intelligent sister who he could be proud of. Before beating up his best friend, Victor was a proud Eagle Scout and had a mother who loved him. Before Tyler left her, Amelia was the perfect daughter who was molded by a rich family template. They meet through juvie, the Bear Canyon Wilderness Therapy program. Each night of the therapy campout, a member of the whole troop is asked to share their story, their sorrows, their secrets.