Thalassa, a sea-witch, is captured when the warlord Rhaeven sends his troops to her small village. After the hard life she's already lived, she's resigned to her fate. Married at a young age to an abusive man she doesn't love, she's secretly glad to see her husband die. Now, pregnant, enslaved and stricken with a deadly disease, she only waits for her own death to release her from the torment that is life.
Elfin Crown Prince of Diraenia, Terran, must choose a mate and produce an heir before his thirtieth birthday or risk forfeiting the crown to his youngest brother Unwin. Time is running out. Terran is twenty-nine, his fiancee is dead, and he believes Unwin responsible despite the lack of proof. To make matters worse, Terran's other brother Sinclair has disappeared, and Terran fears the worst.
Bothered by a strange, haunting beat of drums no one can hear but Terran, the Crown Prince thoughts continually turn to a brief encounter he shared with a young woman from Zal. For three days, he'd walked her back to her village, delivering her to her pre-ordained life there. For three days, he fell in love with the wife of a woman who could never be his. When he returned to his own palace, he'd seen the emptiness and despair of his own life.
The drums call to Terran until he can longer deny his own need to revisit the village where he'd fallen in love. If he sees Thalassa one last time, can he make himself let go?