Talents are now banned in Darem. For Skarn that means an end to his prosperous life as a Talented stoneweaver. Under the new law, he can barely keep his family fed. But when he uses his Talent to save lives, he is cast into the Dungeon: a black pit hundreds of feet underground, laced with "hellrock", the substance that traps the Talented forever. If Skarn can't escape, his family will starve. But the only way he can reach the surface is with the help of a clever gangster and a cryptic old man.