At last Prestimion prepares to take his place in the subterranean Labyrinth where the Pontifex must dwell. He has named Prince Dekkeret to succeed him as Coronal. Once a commoner, Dekkeret brings new blood to the aristocratic Starburst Throne, and a popular wisdom. Another prosperous joint reign should begin. But the diabolical Mandralisca is the eminence grise behind a declaration of independence from distant Zimroel. Coolly proclaiming the five debauched nephews of the treacherous Dantirya Sambail to be the Five Lords of Zimroel, Mandralisca is preparing to destroy the unity and peace of Majipoor. The soothsayer Su-Suheris predicts that a new power is loose in the world, a power equal to any other, but Dekkeret has no faith in omens. Only when Mandralisca avails himself of a sinister device that destroys the mind of Dekkeret's own High Counsellor does the new Coronal begin to see a threat. But without THE KING OF DREAMS, how can lie combat the sinister power emanating from Zimroel?