Way to Strod is the second book of a series set in Arland, a millennium after an environmental catastrophe has destroyed millions of people and most of a preexisting civilization on earth, leaving a ruling class of Guardians who control most of an agrarian population. The people ruled by the Guardians are called People of Nine.
In the first book of the series, the ability of the Guardians to control Arland is successfully challenged by a group of malcontents led by Yeo, a leader of a feral tribal community, the Oneways. The Guardian Academy at Rinu is destroyed and Guardian control is significantly diminished in the richest part of southern Arland.
In Book II, a second Guardian Academy is discovered by Jel, his bondmate, Creela, and his companion, Tsy-Cur. During their visit to Bettel, children from the inn where they are staying are kidnapped by Guardians. Jel and Tsy-Cur rescue two of the children but a third child is taken away to become a slave. In the meantime, other companions of Yeo are brought into a listening group that monitors Guardian communications. Information about missing Stinks as well as missing People of Nine worries Yeo and his companions.
The slave trade angers Yeo who demands help from Cythos, chief of Rance. Cythos sends three escaped Stinks, Dint, Silda and Greck, who take part in a journey to Geckin where they witness slaves being loaded onto large ocean vessels. Thus, Yeo confirms his worst fears. Guardians are trading People of Nine as well as Stinks in exchange for goods from across the Eastern Sea.
Yeo and his companions request help from Black Wall people to make weapons and to train men and women for action against the Guardians. While Yeo and Cythos argue over which target to attack, the pace of kidnapping People of Nine, Stinks and Foggers increases. Finally, Reven, a skilled metalworker from Strod, pushes the companions into action. Plans are laid by Yeo and his allies to disrupt Guardian abuse of Arland’s peoples.