Plot In One Sentence. When an orphan girl finds out about a rebel plot to start a war and kill the King, she must travel through betrayal and mistrust to stop a war that should never have started .
From deep in the heart of the Tallpine forest, murmuring voices could be heard. They rose and fell, but never grew louder than a whisper; and had anyone been in the forest, the voices would not have been loud enough to hear above the rush of the wind.
“He must never know,” said a man with a graying beard, “If he ever finds out, it may very well ruin the plans we have been perfecting all these years.”
Another man shook his head. “We could have major leverage over this boy if we let him know the truth,” he said, disagreeing, “It would give him a reason to do the things we ask, instead of having the risk of his finding out later and deserting us.”
“And what if he leaves us because we give him this information?” asked the first man.
The second man stroked his beard, but gave no answer.
The other men and women started to murmur again; their voices rising as a dispute broke out among them, each trying to get the other to see the problem their way.
Finally, the first man stood from his chair, hammering a fist on the table. “Enough!” he roared, “I have changed my mind. Ostes is right. We could tell the boy, when he’s old enough. That way there is a better chance that he stays with us. Only tell him part of it, though, that way he will need us to find out the rest.”
“We don’t know if he will remember his past!” shouted one man.
“Does it matter?” answered one woman heatedly.
“We don’t know if he will stay loyal. He comes from the king’s city. How do we know he won’t turn on us and go back to King Räolen?” said another.
“We should never have picked a child from Gialien; it will only cause us trouble!”
The room quieted.
The first man shook his head, “You know why we couldn’t choose one of our own.” he said to the group, “This…baby, in a few years, might well be our only hope of achieving our goal.” He gave the room a sharp look, “And all of you know that.”
A large man who had been standing in a corner of the room spoke up. “This boy is the only way,” he rumbled, glancing down at the bundle he held, “This child is the only one we found who was the right age to begin training. And he’s the only boy we found who was not plagued with the illness our land suffers.”
All the people in the room nodded, whispering.
The first man gazed at the man in the corner. “You will be responsible for bringing up this child, and teaching him our ways,” he said, “We will provide his training. Let him know when he reaches the age of understanding, but tell no one else. We cannot fail again,” he closed his eyes. “If he turns away from us, our cause will be lost forever.”
“This boy,” replied the man holding the child, “will bring us to glory. All of our people will praise the name … of Neco.”