In the frozen northlands of the embattled realm of Midkemia, fate can form strange alliances.
It is nine long, bloody years into the ongoing Riftwar that is tearing Midkemia asunder. Having survived a disastrous encounter with their sworn enemy, the Tsurani, Dennis Hartraft's cold, hungry, and exhausted Marauders arrive at a frontier garrison—at the same time as a Tsurani patrol. But a more devastating threat resides within the stronghold: moredhel, a migrating horde of dark elves so deadly and vicious that the only hope for survival is if bitter enemies band together and fight as one.
Now two hostile groups must make their way to freedom, facing a common foe, braving the merciless elements, and haunted by the voice of conscience demanding, "what is more important, a man's life . . . or his honor?"