Fair warning, synopsis are not my forte - something which will become self evident if you read this - but it's been a while and writing a quick(!) recap seemed like a good idea.
In the Who's Who on the left, the characters that are greyed out have, for a variety of reasons, passed out of the story, never to return.
'Mouth' Adsil is the former crown prince of the land of the fae. After trying to prematurely take the throne, he was exiled and chained to a tree in the mortal lands. He is released from this imprisonment by Saint Karl, an agent of the god Siber San.
As a fae, Adsil must honour all promises he makes and he is promise-bound to assume a mortal form. Because he doesn't understand either the importance or the duration of the shape he takes, he opts for something small and stylish - unlike all those thudding mortals. As a result he stands 3ft9 and is easily mistaken for a child when clean shaven.
Out of spite and general mischief, Adsil uses magic to severely damage the City of Indye while Karl is there on official business for his god. As a result, all gods are barred from conducting business within the city and both Adsil and Karl are punished for this.
Adsil's punishment is having all his magical abilities divinely burned out of him. After this has been done, an angry Saint Karl dumps him in the town of Wheatsheaf to fend for himself.
Ill-equipped for living a mortal life, Adsil spends a year as a beggar. Deciding he can't stand the indignities anymore and believing that if he kills his body, his spirit may return home to Nakata, he attempts to hang himself. It goes poorly and he is saved from indefinite strangulation by 'Remus', one of the local crimelords.
After spending some time as one of Remus's 'Moonlighters', Adsil becomes involved in a turf war to increase Remus's stake in the town. The violence of the skirmish attracts the attention of the King's ministers and they scour the town, arresting anyone likely to have a connection to Wheatsheaf's criminal element. Adsil is amongst those arrested and he is taken away for questioning under torment.
Thinking he will soon be destroyed and not wishing to give the ministry any satisfaction, Adsil promises that he will protect Remus from the ministry forever - making it impossible for him to inform.
At significant personal risk, Remus rescues Adsil from the ministry.
Badly wounded by the torments, Adsil realises that his unnatural rate of healing will reveal his non-human nature and he believes he will be killed for it once Remus realises he is one of the fey. Remus tells him that he has known this secret for some time and has no intention of killing him, provided that Adsil keeps his secret - that despite the nature of his chief occupation as a burglar, Remus is much prone to fear and fainting and he needs a helper on his jobs to be handy with the smelling salts,
Bound together by their secrets and the ties of loyalty both have proven to each other, they become inseparable partners in crime, with Remus's role as Adsil's boss becoming more paternal as he trains Adsil to be his successor.
When Karl returns to Wheatsheaf, offering to take Adsil away somewhere he may be safer from mortal troubles, Adsil refuses to leave. Karl warns Adsil that he is attracting dangerous attention to the town, but Adsil declares that if Karl does not leave him alone, he will bend his knee to Remus's god, Ynor. Karl leaves the town, telling Adsil that he will only return if Adsil calls for him via a priest and he will never answer him if Adsil decides to serve Ynor.
A high priest of Ynor arrives in Wheatsheaf and gives Remus this message:
Ynor has decided to raise a new kingdom from the dust of the Drylands. A king or queen will rise in one of the towns upon the eastern trade - Sowsa, Wheatsheaf, Tentar, Goska or Sansin. Only one shall be crowned and the crown must be won by conquest. In each town, the priests have chosen one of their congregation to be given this knowledge. The priest of Wheatsheaf has chosen you to be the herald for this town.
Remus is ambitious. He wishes to be free from fear of the king's ministry and he wants to legitimise his people and the bastard child his lover is carrying, so he accepts this role to becomes a king-maker. Remus is bound to the task by the blood of Ynor and must now succeed, or die trying.
While this effort is underway, Adsil is tempted by the priest of Ynor. The priest tells him that his much-missed magic might be returned to him, if he agrees to take Ynor's godmark and serve him.
He has yet to reach a decision.