A year or so has passed since Jani Kilian left the Commonwealth capital of Chicago to begin life as leader of the hybrid enclave in Thalassa, and the situation is beginning to grow complicated. Tsecha, her idomeni mentor, is publishing treatises that are angering the Shèrain government. Elyas and the other Outer Circle colonies are pondering secession from the Commonwealth, and want Jani and Tsecha to help mediate any separation. And for the first time, Jani is suffering flashbacks and nightmares, as the sere beauty of Thalassa resurrects memories of another stark place last seen twenty years before. The place that changed her life forever. Knevçet Shèràa.
Then John Shroud’s business partner, Val Parini, arrives bearing news that will threaten Thalassa’s continued existence. To make matters worse, he brings with him Lucien Pascal, Jani’s former lover, who never met an ulterior motive he didn’t like. And hovering on the fringes is a Vynshàrau female named Rilas, who has come to Elyas for reasons her own.
1. the final stage of a chess game in which only a few pieces are left on the board.
Also called ending
2. the final stage of a process or contest