A thousand years before the birth of Vlad Taltos, the Dragaeran Empire is a hotbed of intrigue, sorcery, intrigue, swashbuckling adventure, and intrigue. For those who would be heroes, it is a delightful time to be alive--and an easy place to die. Khaavren of the House of Tiassa is a son of landless nobility, possessor of a good sword and "tolerably well acquainted with its use." Along with three loyal friends, he enthusiastically seeks out danger and excitement. But in a realm renowned for repartee and betrayals, where power is as mutable as magic, a young man like Khaavren, newly come from the countryside, had best be wary. His life depends on it. And so does the future of Dragaera. When swordplay beckons, it's all for one--and one for..."The Phoenix Guards."--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.