Fourteen-year-old Jack Morgan has gone through a lot since he met Draycos, a dragon-like K'da warrior he saved when everyone else in Draycos' scout fleet was killed in an ambush. Ever since, Jack and Draycos, who slips onto Jack's back like a living tattoo, have been trying to track down the people responsible for the massacre.
On the planet Brum-a-dum Jack gets hired to work on a plantation owned by a Brummga whose family has ties to mercenary groups. One of those groups might have been involved in the ambush.
Jack's a terrific thief, and managed to do a passable imitation of a mercenary, but those talents don't help him much on the plantation. Here, he's just one of many slaves, with little hope of finding the information he came for. But that's not his biggest problem now. The slavemaster knows Jack's no ordinary slave, and has his eye on him. Jack, who's been in tight spots before, knows that can only mean trouble.
On the heavily fortified grounds of the alien plantation, there's no way to get out, and nobody to help him. Nobody, that is, except Draycos. Jack can only hope that's enough.