Eyes of the Storm is the third book in the Bone series. It collects issues 13-19 of Jeff Smith's Bone comic book series along with 5 previously unpublished story pages and 9 new illustrations. It marks the conclusion of the first part of the saga, titled "Vernal Equinox". The book was first published by Cartoon Books in its original black-and-white form in 1996. Paperback and hardback coloured editions were published in 2006 by Scholastic. The volume begins to show more mature storytelling than previous volumes, an example of this being that there is more issues of violence featured.
The mysteries of the past are brought to light as Gran'ma Ben reveals the truth about Thorn's parents and childhood, and her connection with the Dragons. Unrest in the valley grows as the Rat Creatures become bolder in their pursuit of "the one who bears the star", while Phoney and Smiley make a bet with Lucius Down over who can run the Barrelhaven tavern best.
The two Stupid Rat Creatures, lying low after wrecking the Great Cow Race, are to their surprise congratulated by Kingdok for their mistake. Thorn has a vivid dream where she, dressed in a regal gown, is beckoned by The Hooded One, who then reveals Fone Bone's head under its hood.
The Great Red Dragon appears in Fone Bone's Moby Dick inspired nightmare. The following day, as Fone Bone tries again to write Thorn a love poem, the Dragon himself shows up. Fone Bone asks him about the dream, and the Dragon hints that he actually entered the dream on purpose. The worries of the night are soon forgotten, however, as the Bone cousins have to tackle some of the more onerous tasks of farm life.
Lucius, Smiley and Phoney Bone set off back for the Barrelhaven, but a fierce storm strikes up en route, and the wagon is ambushed by Rat Creatures. Smiley Bone leads a charge to safety, but sends the wagon and its passengers over a cliff and into a river. At the farm house, Thorn and Fone Bone shelter from the rain in a barn and discuss each other's dreams, and in particular why Gran'ma Ben lied to Thorn about her past and the Dragons.
Eyes of the Storm
Gran'ma Ben makes her feelings known about Fone Bone, telling him he must have woken the Dragon by coming to the valley. The trio are attacked by Rat Creatures, and Fone Bone calls out to the Great Red Dragon for help; once again he appears and scares them away. However, Gran'ma Ben seems angry with the Dragon. "You think he'll be there whenever you need him," she warns, "but he wasn't always there for me." Fone bone tries to make a connection with Thorn.
Gran'ma Ben apologizes to Bone for accusing him of stirring up trouble in the valley, knowing the troubles started long before he and his cousins arrived. Fone Bone shows her the map, and tells her about the swarm of locusts, a detail she finds particularly disconcerting - if the Lord of the Locusts has returned, she realizes, another war will be unavoidable. Gents were in fact the monarchs of the realm throughout the generation-long war with the Rat Creatures, and Thorn herself has been the crown princess during the period of uneasy peace since then. She was moved from the palace during the "Nights of Lightning", a series of brutal surprise attacks by the Rat Creatures, and taken to Deren Gard and safety with the Dragons. En route the escort party was betrayed by the nursemaid and the King and Queen of Atheia, Thorn's parents, were murdered.
Meanwhile, spies for the Rat Creatures bring Kingdok and The Hooded One news of the identity of the crown princess. It is revealed that the Lord of the Locusts has indeed reawoken, and has The Hooded One under its command.
Fone Bone attempts to comfort Thorn after Gran'ma Ben's shocking revelations, and that knowledge she had been dreaming of her past with the Dragons, Deren Gard, and even the ambush and murder of her parents for years. Meanwhile, Phoney and Smiley find they may have bitten off more than they can chew with the bet against Lucius. Struggling to come up with an idea to draw more people to their side of the bar, Phoney lets slip about the Great Red Dragon.
Things That Go Bump in the Night
Tales of a dragon draw the townsfolk to Phoney's side of the Barrelhaven bar, and Phoney sees the opportunity to capitalise on their fears by proclaiming himself a dragon slayer. A hooded stranger wearing a pendant with a royal crest on it visits the Barrelhaven, bringing Lucius news about troop movements along the border in South Pawa; a huge army of Rat Creatures is approaching. Gran'ma Ben, hearing the same news via Ted the bug and fearing for Thorn's safety now that the rat creatures know where they live, presents Thorn with her old sword and shield and insists they must leave.