Tarin's been caught, but can he be civilized?
Despite his wild ways and his keen instincts, Twice-caught Tarin is bonding with his beak-faced captain, Garrick, but not everyone wants their relationship to succeed. Learning civilized skills and living in buildings have their good points, but Tarin struggles to reconcile his yearning for freedom with his desire for Garrick and his loyalty to his friends. His thinking is clouded by his buzzing conscience and the remaining effects of having his memory wiped by the mysterious Mothers.
One thing Tarin is sure of; Major Jadon is a Bad Egg. He's a bitter and jealous man determined to stop any happiness in the community and consolidate power in himself. If Jadon succeeds in his plans, not only will Tarin and Garrick be parted, but Tarin's friend Perry will be in Jadon's clutches.
As if threats to community harmony and the safety of new boys weren't bad enough, Tarin may lose the traditional Candle Day choice between his man and the woods if Garrick is not declared to be whole and healthy. Can Tarin's untamed nature defeat the civilized Jadon's cunning use of the community's rules before Candle Day? As many perils for Tarin lie within the winterbound community as outside, but when library-boy Aran faces a cruel punishment, Tarin is even willing to face the Mothers to save his friend.
Winter may pass, but will Jadon’s malice ever cease?