Tales of loathsome kings and prophesied saviors aren't so appealing when you are a royal bastard of prophecy... Evonalé Yunan is supposed to somehow free her grandmother's enslaved people, but she's merely a child, and her father is the powerful fire mage who subjugates the realm. She has therefore fled home, her half-siblings, and the father who really should've been her uncle. Unfortunately, it's the middle of winter. Fortunately, following her mother's directions has put her in another king's hunting grounds. To Evonalé's bewilderment, that king picks her up and gives her a place in his castle. The prince seeks her out to tease and befriend. Then one of Cook's daughters starts teaching her magic, and a scullery maid proves herself immune to poison. Evonalé isn't the only one with secrets. ----------- Followed by "A Fistful of Earth"