This is Volume V The Gibbet. In the previous Chapter IV Quietus, we learned about the plight of Eleanor, who was hung for spitting blasphemies against the bishop, her lover and father to her daughter. Violet was born while her mother was hanging and swinging by the neck in the scaffold. Now thirteen years of age, she's kidnapped by Princess Fausta and wants to use her body in the bacchanals of orgy and booze with the high society of Paris, principally the Royals. Pardaillan and her fiance are desperately looking for her when Pardaillan runs into the Duchess of Guise who had escaped the bacchanal after being discovered by her husband and future king of France, the Duke of Guise. He saw her making love to his nemesis, her boy toy, and order him murdered by Ruggieri, Queen Catherine of Medici astrologer and lover. Fausta has come to Paris installed as Popess (a woman pope) by a secret conclave in the Vatican against the current Pope Sixtus V.