A human shaman and healer returns from several years with the mysterious shyani, accompanied by her shapeshifting puma best friend. Back in human lands, the question arises: which world does she belong in?
The friend most important to Vixen in her previous life as a male student physician has come into possession of an old shyani book, and the more fanatical shyani and weyres will stop at nothing to reclaim it and punish Jared. Even though it means going back into the lowlands and facing Jared as a woman, she can't bear to just look the other way. This should be a short visit, just long enough to see the book into the proper hands and make sure Jared will not be killed for having it, and then she can return to the shyani community that has accepted her as their shaman. And, of course, her feline best friend Dayr insists on coming with her.
But Jared is now a Lord, with considerable wealth and power, and his response to her presence isn't one she expected. A new perspective born of a decade with the shyani collides uncomfortably with old fantasies evolved through two decades of life among humans. As an honoured guest in a highborn house, Vixen finds herself questioning where she belongs: with Dayr and the shyani, who accept her gender without question but have to make allowances for her differences, or with other humans, in the culture she grew up in even though revelation of her past would mean a major scandal?
Trigger warning: A flashback scene includes an unsuccessful suicide attempt. (It has an additional warning.)
Cover by the author, with thanks to Robin Collett. Images used under Creative Commons.
Mountain lion: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Mountain-lion-01623.jpg
Landscape background: https://www.flickr.com/photos/atbaker/756993251/
- Nineteen pt1
- Nineteen pt2