How much is a life worth? And who will pay the price? Fifteen-year-old Lileela returns from the planet Karkar, embittered over what she perceives as abandonment by her parents. Why do they want her back now? And why does Karkar demand such a huge payment for delivering her? Neither she nor her family suspects that the Karkar’s true mission is revenge. The tiny New Gannahan settlement has no hope of repelling an invasion – except for One the Karkar can’t see.