Corvus, the Black Sorcerer, has cut a rift into the land of Idalore, leaving only ash in his wake. The only individual capable of stopping his purging flame is the Hero of the Sword, a being chosen by the Sword of Eternity to accomplish an insurmountable task. The previous hero has fallen, forcing the magical weapon to choose a new host. But any hero will not do. A new face is needed in this dying land, one who is Corvus’s spiritual equal and intellectual match. The sword knows who it must choose, but this man is worlds away, stuck in a prison of his own making. Lincoln Maxwell, the Legal Proofreader, lives his daily life in soulless routine. Manipulated by his ex-girlfriend, ridiculed by a chauvinistic co-worker, and unlucky with his secret crush, Lincoln is the embodiment of failure. He sits by while his job, his love and his passions slip away. Deciding he has had enough, Lincoln commits the greatest atrocity and leaps from the top of his apartment building. Certain that his end will finally bring peace, he is instead brought to Idalore. Coming upon the Sword of Eternity amidst the fall of their final stronghold, Lincoln is marked as the next Hero of the Sword. It is a fate he rejects. But, with a weapon that will only respond to him, and a society seeking a savior, he has no choice but to take the first steps away from a life of failure, towards one of redemption.