"Japan, 1701. A woman is brutally attacked within a nightmarish storm of swirling clouds. Meanwhile, at Edo Castle, samurai detective turned chamberlain Sano Ichiro is suspicious of his old rival, Yanagisawa, who has been oddly cooperative since returning from exile. But just as Yanagisawa's true motives begin to emerge, Sano's estranged uncle comes to him for help: His daughter has disappeared, and he begs Sano to find her before it is too late."
"To my fellow longtime members of the George Alec Effinger writers' workshop: Andy Fox, Mark McCandless, Marian Moore, and Fritz Ziegler. My deepest thanks for your advice, support, and friendship through these many years.
And in memory of our mentor, George Alec Effinger (1947—2002). I owe you more than you ever knew, and I never thanked you enough. May we meet again someday."
- Kumazawa clan
- Nanbu Bosai
- Sano clan
- Yanagisawa clan
- Hirata clan