What determines the value of a soul?
Despite the heroics of young Reimar, the farmhold of Aattaettirstrond is desperate. Their crops burned in a Skaerslinger raid and winter is fast approaching. Without aid, starvation is assured.
Brother Finn, is stranded by a viking attack that damaged the ship taking him into exile. Now under the authority of an overwhelmed priest, he is ordered to the farmhold of Aattaettirstrond and evaluate their need. Upon learning the magnitude of the farmhold's distress, Brother Finn negotiates a trade: seven children for the food needed to survive the winter.
The deal done, Brother Finn is forced to escort Reimar and six other children on their journey through a gauntlet of natural and supernatural dangers to Saint Martin's Academy. Once complete he must finish his journey into exile lest he be declared a fredlause and placed outside the law and marked for death by any one who desires it.