Shastiana Tonric, a newly trained midwife, is only eighteen when the rebel Mikar tries to assassinate the King, Queen Ellowen, and their young son and heir, Rifdan. Upon his failure, the wanted assassin drew together his forces and led them into the water, building an intricate Dome on the floor of the sea. Along with his armies, Mikar forced many of the innocent people to follow him to the Dome. Shastiana was within the castle at the time of the attack and she and Ellowen were forcibly taken by Mikar’s men down to the watercraft that would carry them out to sea and then down into the Dome.
As Shastiana cares for the pregnant women on board, she becomes more and more afraid of Mikar, but she also grows secretly defiant against his terrible rule. When she is called to deliver a dying woman’s baby, she refuses to kill the child as Mikar demands, but hides it away in her quarters. Upon arriving at the Dome, Shastiana and the remaining pregnant women are sent to live in The Cove, a guarded area of the Dome, concealed away from the main community.
As the pregnant women each eventually give birth, they are ripped away from their children and their memories are erased. They are each then sent out into the Dome community, without any remembrance of their babies. The infants are placed in the care of Shastiana and The Cove is sealed, not to be opened again until after 20 years have passed.
But Shastiana has other plans. So does Mikar.