The god Orok gave to his five children crystals of surpassing beauty, to be embedded in The Orokon to ensure the harmony of life - until the dark god Koros stole his crystal and plunged the world into chaos and despair.
In the village of Irion the crippled boy Jemany Vexing, bastard son of the beautiful but frail Lady Elabeth, lives in the dilapidated castle with his dying mother and his fanatical Aunt Umbecca. Ela, seduced, it is believed, by a common soldier, is a social outcast, while her dashing brother Tor is a traitor, wanted for crimes against the false king.
Unable to walk, Jem is condemned to a wretched half-life, until he meets a mysterious dwarf . . . and with his new strength comes a new friendship, with the wild girl Catayane; their love holds the secret to incredible magical powers.
As the horrors of the Bluejacket regime begin, so Jem becomes aware of his greater destiny, for his is the quest to find and reunite the five crystals of The Orokon. But he is not the only seeker: the evil sorcerer Toth-Vexrah has his own plans and will let no one stand in his way.