In the year 2448, the interstellar Empire of Rome spans an area almost as wide as the far-flung colonial worlds of the United States of America. Caesar Numa Pompeii is still rebuilding his shredded empire after the catastrophic war that his predecessor, Caesar Romulus, waged against the United States. War’s end left Romulus in a nanovirus-induced coma, captive of Caesar Numa.
Numa has under his command a powerful living weapon—a patterner, an augmented man capable of synthesizing vast amounts of data into actionable intelligence. Now, Numa has lost his prisoner, and his patterner may have turned on him, while the U.S.S. Merrimack has lost the commander of her Fleet Marines, Colonel T. R. Steele. Events take a Mobius turn when fanatical devotees of Romulus rescue their fallen leader from his tortured captivity and fashion him into the most capable patterner ever created. Romulus is back, more insanely brilliant than ever. But without his queen, all the power in the universe means nothing. Romulus will move heaven and Earth and space and time to rescue his beloved Claudia.
Admiral John Farragut returns to the space battleship Merrimack in an attempt to head off the impending temporal catastrophe. Past and future hinge on a critical moment when time broke once before in the distant star cluster known as the Myriad.