"My heat rose as I listened to the sound that our bodies made, the slap of damp skin on leather, the low humming growl she made in her throat, the scraping of my fingernails clutching the furniture."
To Moana Irving, the rediscovery of the Ball seems impossible. Lonely and lost, working in the wings of an English theater, she obsessively recounts the heat and sensuality of the memorable event -- a night of unharnessed sexual release and exploration. Feeling ignored by her best friend, Iris, and disconnected from the rest of the world, Moana throws herself into mad nights of forced rapture, pushing away the regret that always overcomes her immediately after.
But Moana and the Ball are linked in ways she is yet to realize, and hints and whispers about the grand fête follow her persistently. When she uncovers a long-hidden secret about Iris's family in the underbelly of the theater -- a story of heaving passion and loss, and the secret birth of a child -- the Ball becomes even more irresistible, promising Moana and Iris answers rooted in excitement and pleasure, and offering them a chance to belong to the grandest gala of them all.