Natohk's horde of desert warriors advances on Conan's band of mercenaries and the remnants of the once-proud Khorajan army -- and the Battle of Shamla Pass begins! Earning the trust and admiration of his fellow soldiers, Conan impresses everyone with his natural leadership skills and tactical instincts -- but that hard-earned respect may be for naught if those defending Princess Yasmela and Khoraja are massacred by Natohk's monstrous forces. From his vantage point on a plateau, Conan looks down on his opponent, as a sea of approaching swords fills the valley. Things go from bad to worse when Natohk unveils some supernatural, deadly, and horrifying surprises. Conan's first command may be his last!