When Lady Eloise of the Isle of Venn becomes betrothed to the King of Ystria, she looks forward to a life of luxury and status at the royal court. She certainly doesn't anticipate being shipwrecked on the way to her wedding, escorted by the King's assassin, Severin de Meynard, the most hated man in the kingdom. Nor does she anticipate them having to make their way back home to Ystria on foot, through hundreds of miles of enemy territory. Above all, she doesn't expect to fall in love with the cynical, ruthless Severin. Eloise and Severin struggle to control their growing attraction to each other because if they do t-if she returns to the King longer a virgin-then they will both be executed. Yet their passion threatens to be far stronger than their self-control, leading them to other ways to satisfy their desires. Severin and Eloise are torn between duty and their burning need for one ather, and both will face bitter sacrifice before the end.