yan, son of the brewer, was born without a tail. “Tail-less” they called him, a mark of shame in the society of the Chirrans where a person’s tail is a symbol of status and identity. He and his family were nothing more than servants, landless serfs to the ill-tempered night, Sir Corcocho Cossa, bound by law to his estate, Blafis Manor. Day after day, Ayan endured the backbreaking work of his lowly station, insult and humiliation at the hands of his master and his petulant sons, and the message of mindless obedience drilled into him by the village priest. Though Ayan knew his parents, the beautiful, but strong willed Julietta, and the stoic, soft spoken Rhuus, loved him, he sensed that they lived in a world wrapped in secret and filled with preoccupations that was forever inaccessible to him. Ayan’s only peer, his brother and reluctant friend Rando is destined to be sent off to a far away school to earn his letters.
One day while being instructed on the tenants of his people’s cruel god, Ayan is overcome with anxiety about his ever-dimming future. Unable to bear the prospect of a lonely life of servitude, Ayan decides to abandon his temple training in order to seek admission into the Wulvecracken, an elite order of knights that serve under the Baron of San Marga. In doing so, Ayan takes the first step in a journey that would lead him beyond his wildest dreams, and the significance of which he could hardly comprehend.
In the most unlikely of places, the sewers of Castle Wulvenfall, Ayan befriends the mysterious, and supernaturally gifted Blue Maiden, Mieu Notra, a girl with a strong will, contempt for tradition, and who is haunted by a troubled past. The girl awakens something within Ayan, and from then on, for better of for worse, their fates are intertwined in a web of love, betrayal, and redemption.
Ayan is rejected for knighthood, but that doesn’t stop his life from being complicated by a chain of peculiar events, which start with a strange dream in which he claims Shadow Gleam, the legendary sword of the first king of Vellorea, followed by the disappearance of Mieu, the blue-haired object of his affection, and leads to a face-to-face meeting with Griol, the brutal, 1000-armed, war-obsessed god of the Chirrans. The deity tasks Ayan with retrieving an artifact from a forgotten, haunted castle, promising to fulfill Ayan’s every desire in return. When he learns that his beloved Blue Maiden is also at the castle in question, Ayan accepts the task.
Along the way, Ayan makes loyal friends: his cousin Jon Cabal, a refugee from land ravaged by tyranny, Earon Deacon, a strange, well educated boy that never seems to fit in anywhere. He also meets bitter rivals, like Dessaro DeLasombra, a young noble with a lust for fighting and romantic designs on Mieu. Ayan’s path is filled with a multitude of unique personalities, such as Motlinger the thief, the outlaw Scarlet Hawk, the enigmatic Old Man of the Forrest, and the enormous demigod, Caco the Beast.
Ayan and his band of adventurers will brave bullies, bandits, hardened criminals, slavers, and the trials of a sentient, labyrinthine, shape-shifting castle in order to rescue a girl who doesn’t necessarily want to be rescued. As Ayan negotiates the trials and tribulations of his new life, the final words of Griol ring ominously in his ears:
“Struggle, my child… for your suffering shall be delicious.”