Three years earlier, Jorian had been the crowned King of Xylar. But the laws of Xylar decreed that each randomly chosen King must be beheaded at the end of a five-year reign. Jorian had a prejudice against losing his head. With the aid of the aged wizard Karadur, he managed to flee.
Unfortunately he had not been able to bring his beloved wife, Queen Estrildis, with him, nor had he yet been able to find a means of freeing her from the palace in Xylar City.
Now, however, he felt that his luck was about to change. He and the aged wizard Karadur were being flown through the night air in a great copper bathtub, powered by a demon under Karadur’s control. Ahead of them lay Xylar City. There, while the demon kept the bathtub hovering above the palace, Jorian could let down a rope and rescue Estrildis.