Once a slave girl in the village of River Away, Kale is freed when she discovers a dragon's egg. She is given the unexpected opportunity to journey to the great walled city of Vendala to become a servant to Paladin. Yet this young girl has much to learn about the difference between slavery and service.
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A dragonkeeper of Paladin, Kale is summoned from the Hall to The Bogs by the Wizard Fenworth to serve as his apprentice and tend his newly hatched meech dragon, Regidor. But Kale isn't going alone. The Hall is sending a student to monitor her performance and report back to the scholars. Worst of all, it's Bardon - an older boy Kale finds irritating, but who at least can hold his own in a sword fight.
Before vowing his allegiance to Wulder as a knight, Bardon heads to the mountains for solitude. His life is suddenly complicated by a woman and her granddaughter, N'Rae, on a mission to rescue the woman's son trapped in a chamber of sleep. Bardon learns that more of Paladin's knights are imprisoned - and suspects one of them is Dragon Keeper Kale's missing father.
Three years of strife have passed since Kale and Bardon freed Paladin's knights. Now, fiery dragons scorch their beautiful countryside as an evil husband-and-wife wizard duo fight for supremacy. The people of Amara just want to be left alone, hoping the conflict will disappear. But Paladin is dying, and Bardon and Kale - now married - must accept fateful, separate assignments if their land is to survive. Can their efforts turn the tide against their adversaries?
The fantastic land of Amara is recovering from years of war as well as from the spiritual apathy corroding the Amarans' hearts. With Kale and her father serving as dragon keepers for Paladin, the dragon populace has exploded. It's a peaceful, exciting time of rebuilding. And yet, an insidious, unseen evil lurks just beneath the surface of the idyllic countryside.