A broken formation and a staggered attack leads to disaster over Bayone Three. Two starships destroyed. Several more crippled. Thousands missing. Captain Jason Hunter is also missing and presumed dead, leaving his sister behind to face responsibility.
DSS Fury is grounded by order of Skywatch Command. The majority of the battleship Argent's firepower is gone, and the Judge Advocate is preparing a defense against the possibility of a general court martial aimed at the remaining Perseus skippers and the rest of Admiral Powers' so-called "alarmist" political allies.
Meanwhile, with Jayce's mentor Commander Patrick Enright in a coma from which he may never awaken, the young captain blames herself even as she vows to hunt down the ambush fleet responsible for the destruction of the starship Revenge.
As Jayce battles her own worst fears, she pushes her authority to the limit and re-classifies her command Skywatch Special Forces Recon. Now all she needs is a team willing to share the risk of piracy and insubordination charges to return to Bayone.
There Hunter's renegades may finally discover the secrets of the mysterious Ithis technology and use it to learn the true fate of the one man who can beat Colonel Atwell at his own game.