|“|| Treat these strangers with caution.|
We don't know if they are friends or foes.
–Olvan to Rollan and Abeke, (from Chapter 3: Unwelcome News)
Something ancient and evil has awoken from beneath the world of Erdas. Shrouded in shadow and older than memory, just a sliver of its power can destroy with a touch. Even the spirit animal bond, the sacred link between humans and animals that keeps Erdas in balance, is under threat.
Four young heroes, Conor, Abeke, Meilin, and Rollan, are determined to stop it. Together with their spirit animals, they embark on a desperate journey that takes them deep underground and to the far corners of the world. As friends and allies fall around them, the four have no choice but to push forward and confront this darkness. If they stop to look back, they'll see the truth: Evil already has them surrounded.
Conor, Takoda, Xanthe, and Meilin continue across Sadre. In a vision, Conor sees the Wyrm, which appears to be a shapeshifting black blob, and its cage. Xanthe finds out about Conor's infection. After a battle with spiders in a giant musical web which causes a raging fire, they get split up, with Xanthe missing. They realize they will have to cross the Sulfur Sea (which happens in the third book.)
The Redcloaks are spying on Ninani and Tasha. Meanwhile, Rollan and Abeke meet with Olvan at Greenhaven. He assigns them on a mission to Stetriol to investigate the summoner of Ninani which is Tasha. There, they find Stetriol rebuilding, and many of the children have spirit animals. They also meet King. Rollan and Abeke learn at the palace that the Stetriolan government is keeping Tasha and Ninani secret from the public. Rollan convinces Tasha to come with them. Word gets out, and during the festivities, the Wyrm-infected attack. The Redcloaks arrive and hold them off. Rollan, Abeke, and Tasha flee. However, Greenhaven is simultaneously attacked and captured. Olvan locks himself up to keep the infected from getting to him, but Zerif slips a parasite under the door, and so Olvan gets infected.
- This is the only book in the Fall of the Beasts series to have a female author.
- This is the first book to have Redcloaks on the cover.
- This is the first book to mention the Redcloaks by name.
- The Keeper is mentioned in this book.