Tristen successfully fought back the tides of evil sorcery, and his victory brought his good friend Cefwyn both a kingdom and a true love. But the Lines that hold the world in place are shifting again. As a ruthless enemy prepares for battle, Tristen must once again take up the sword inscribed with "Truth" and "Illusion" on its blade. But the foe he faces is no mere pretender to Cefwyn's throne. For the Shadows Tristen sees are straight from Ruin - a terrifying flow of darkness that covers the world like ink.