Helius, Nero's most trusted advisor, anticipates the death of his sworn enemy, the legendary warrior Gallus Sergius Vitas, scheduled to die a gruesome death in the arena. However, the badly beaten man who appears in the amphitheater is not who he seems. Rescued by a stranger and given a mysterious scroll, Vitas is told that he must decipher this letter to find the answers he needs. It is a letter that Helius is also determined to decipher and to keep hidden from Nero. As Nero's reign of terror grows, so does his circle of enemies.