Jeth Seagrave is the leader of the Malleus Shades, the galaxy's most accomplished and elusive band of teenage mercenaries. Working for feared crime boss Hammer Defoe, Jeth and his crew have made their name stealing unsecured metadrives – the complex piece of technology that makes faster-than-light-speed travel possible. The ITA–the far-reaching organization that produces and polices metatechnology–has been on Jeth's tale for years, and is looking for any chance to take down Hammer's black market metatech trade.
But Jeth doesn't care about any of this. All he wants to do is earn enough money to purchase his parents’ ship, Avalon, from Hammer. His parents, former ITA scientists, were executed for treason years back, and Jeth, his sister Lizzie, and their uncle Milton fell into debt to Hammer. Finally, Jeth has found himself just one job away from freedom. This job, however, is going to give Jeth much, much more than he bargained for – and when he finds himself in possession of information that both Hammer and the ITA will kill for, he is going to have to ask himself how far he'll go to get the freedom he's dreamed of for so long.