With the Emperor defeated after a seemingly endless war, the citizens pray they'll never need to fight again. But already unrest is growing in the north of Khandarken. After Julianne Adjudicator's father disappears, she seeks to escape the clutches of her vicious stepmother Zanata, who has posted a reward on her head. The Sanctuary, near the Legitamia border, is rumoured to be the safest place for a woman in need of shelter in a sometimes hostile world full of unrest and roving dispossessed. But when Julianne seeks asylum, it soon becomes clear all is not as it first appeared. Then Abe Farmer arrives at the Sanctuary seeking medical help and she seizes the opportunity to leave. Abe isn't interested in taking a young woman with them, as he and his injured bodyguard struggle to return to the Southern Territory. Yet when he discovers her fate if she stays, he finds he has no choice. But the journey becomes more dangerous as they encounter the army of the New Emperor. Caught in the middle of a firefight, they flee toward the Catastrophic Ocean. Can Abe keep her safe till they reach home? From the mud and danger of the open road to the welcoming arms of the Sanctuary, from attacks by the dispossessed army to the storms of the open sea, Son of the Emperor takes us on a wild ride into danger and on to the dream of freedom.