During the last Interglacial more than 125,000 years ago, humans hybridized with the R'il'nai and spread across the galaxy to colonize other planets. Although they formed a Confederation, they still depended on the R'il'nai for guidance and protection-not only from the Maungs but from each other.|
But only one of the pureblood R'il'nai still lives-Lai, an embittered survivor who mourns his lost human love but is still bound to honor his race's responsibility to the Confederation. Two others possess the potential to change his and the Confederation's future: Snowy, a slave dancer who is frightened of his special powers, and Marna, a healer who survived a planet-wide epidemic on her home world.
All have their own individual loyalties which put them in conflict with one another, but the only way they can summon a future to benefit all is to work together.