From Lockhaven Gwendolyn has assigned a Patrol Captain a small group of mice, including a Healer, a Huntsmouse and a young Tenderpaw with great talent. The team is instructed to make their way to the eastern Scent Border by way of Port Sumac.
They are dispatched but the changing seasons make the road treacherous. A detour to Wildseed becomes necessary, where they encounter a wounded Salt Merchant, a trap set by a cunning Kestrel.
The mice do battle with the bird of prey and succeed in bringing the avian to heel, though not without suffering some injury. They take the wounded mouse to Wildseed where they encounter a gruff Swordsmouse who refuses to allow them passage over a bridge unless they pay a toll.
The group manage to negotiate entrance to the town, but they find no friends in the village. Winter was harsh and the Guard was not able to assist them. Finding supplies may prove troublesome…