Expect to meet new characters, like Katinka (Rosi's younger sister) or the Lilienstengel guards Horst, Kunz, and Volker (actually characters from the first arc of the Ringstetten Saga, privates under Lieutenant Gerhard von Ringstetten's command)...
Charles is already betrothed to Sophia, and both live at Schloss Lilienstengel, where peace reigns, the regency will soon come to an end, and everyone (court ladies and excellencies, blue-coated guards in silver lace and valets in gold livery, and even the regent himself) is completely unaware of the threat that is gradually taking shape beyond the palace park... One can already believe that the peace and merriment won't last that long.
Far away, on the fringes of existence, an outcast deity (Eris, the personification of chaos, released by Blondie Lockes from Pandora's box) triggers a chain of unexpected events that leave no character in-universe indifferent.
Starting with a declaration of war and the "reconquest" of Lilienstiel by Wonderland, the call of nearly all the guards, led by Charles himself, to arms and their departure for the war front (leaving a garrison behind to defend Schloss Lilienstengel). When the young monarch disappears, severely injured, on the battlefield, his army left in tatters and fleeing outnumbered by the Wonderland ranks... the elderly regent's health failing more for each day, the presence of an unknown traitor at court, the upcoming siege of Schloss Lilienstengel, where the last stand will be held... Sophia, Mireille, Erszi, Rosi, Jeanne, and Blondie are whisked away to a distant hinterland fortress... that turns out to have fallen.
Luckily, they were captured by highwaymen just before their arrival. Katinka falls out with Rosi for having "betrayed their ideals". The highwaymen's stronghold still resists the invasion, and it is far more secure in case of siege than Schloss Lilienstengel. Concealed in the woods, these dark outsiders fight a secret gerilla war on Wonderland, joined by more Lilienstielian villagers and deserters for each day. To reconquer their kingdom and save their loved ones, our leading cast will have to walk through fire and ice before risking it all at one card at Lilienstengel... Sophia will break prison and be left for dead, then assume a fallen officer's identity... Will her cross-dressing fail?
There are still a lot of questions to be asked about the outcome of this war (highlight below for spoilers!)
- Will Lilienstengel fall? (Almost: half the palace will burn after a two-month siege, and the besieged will seek refuge in the bedchamber, but the occupation will last but for three days)
- Is Charles still alive? (He is, but he spends a while in delirium, unconscious.)
- If he lives, is he free or imprisoned? (Imprisoned and brainwashed, turned Lizzie's General Scarlet's aide-de-camp...)
- Allies from France, Prussia, and other lands will join Lilienstiel in its plight... Will Rainer, still doubting his destiny as a death seeker, finally fall shot through the heart? (Yes, but he will be resurrected by Katla, after realizing that she, not Lilianne, is his real true love).
- Who is the enemy within? (Ostensibly, Madeline "Maddie" Hatter, now the Wonderland ambassador/diplomat at Lilienstengel, subjugated to the will of Blondie... possessed by Eris).
- Will the regent lose his life? (He dies of a heart attack during the last stand, having gradually been weakened by one of Madeline's potions).
- And, last of all, will this story end with a happily ever after? (It will, though Mireille and Laurent will both have died during the last stand).