Genre: YA Fantasy
Word Count: 85,000
Once, seventeen-year-old Grey was the best friend of a prince, trained
to serve him as spy commander. Now, she hides in the secret passages
of the palace, haunted by memories of torture and secrets betrayed.
Until she makes a mistake and is dragged back into life by one of the
Grey expects to find blame, but instead she finds old friends, a
crumbling nation, and a whole lot of stupid, desperate loyalty.
Everybody is fighting for survival, when hope--and the war--is almost
lost. When Grey comes face to face with the prince, the slivers of
their friendship are fragile, but he gives her a last chance. A final
spy mission with one aim: revenge.
But as Grey fights to belong, she discovers another side of the
kingdom. A world the prince doesn’t know, where survivors make their
homes in underground cities, and the enemy only fights for freedom
too. A world she falls in love with. And slowly, Grey unravels the
threads to an intricate deception. Someone is orchestrating the war
and both sides are stuck in the same web of lies. The upside? It means
an opportunity to work together. The downside? Grey has to trust
herself enough to let go of her only chance to come home.
Hidden in the secret passageways, I knew two things: sound meant
danger, and in the midst of war a palace was never quiet. Heightened
security drew home soldiers and knights alike, to protect their king
with heavy bootsteps and drawn swords. The courtiers fought with
words, the squires dreamed their battle cries. And underneath it all
ran an endless whisper from kitchen scullions to paladins.
Will the war reach us? What will happen?
But today was different. In the early hours of the morning, the whole
world slept. The guards stood watch on tiptoe. The palace kitchens,
usually bustling, were quiet. Even the cellar door didn’t creak when I
pushed it open and peeked through.
Across the room, a young cook’s mate slept next to the dwindling
flames, with North, the fat red cat draped over his knees and tabby
South curled up at his feet. The boy breathed deep and even—one hand
hanging outside his apron twitched.
Today everything had to be special, because at the height of the
Midsun celebrations the crown prince would speak his oath as regent of
the outerlands and take over command of the war. No one would whisper
he was too young and not meant to rule. No one would mention the other
prince and the prison and the spies. No one would ask about the girl
who used to be at his side, his best friend and accomplice. Grey.
Today, Darameryl sang songs of hope.