In the year 1311, in the highest tower of Cloud of Sparrows Castle, a beautiful woman sits by the window, watching as enemies gather below. As she calmly awaits her fate, she begins to write, carefully setting down on a scroll the secret history of the Okumichi clan...of the gift of prophecy they share and the extraordinary destiny that awaits them. For six centuries, these writings lay hidden-until they are uncovered by an American missionary named Emily Gibson, who arrived in Edo harbor in 1861. Soon an extraordinary man would enter her life: Lord Genji of the Okumichi clan, a nobleman who must defend his embattled family-and confront forbidden feelings for an outsider in his midst. Emily soon finds a mission of her own: translating Genji's ancestral history. But as Emily sifts through the fragile scrolls, she begins to see threads of her own life woven into the ancient writings. And soon a hidden history comes to life, and with it a secret prophecy that has been shrouded for centuries, and may now finally be revealed. Book jacket.