Amaya, niece of the king and apprentice magician, is exiled to the north to study magic with the Contessa Palasan. But Palasan is a powerful sorceress who has her own plans for a cast-off magicians' apprentice with no protectors. Instead of taking Amaya on, she has bewitched her, making Amaya forget her lovers, her familiar, and even Amaya's own magic!
But Amaya's fellow apprentice, Tiasa, isn't about to let a dangerous sorceress steal her beloved. Now, she too is a captive of the Contessa, collared and ready to serve. Will she be able to save them both? And what secrets does Kirek, the mysterious major-domo, hold?