T imothy Zahn  continues the saga of the Cobras (technologically enhanced soldiers necessary in times of war to battle an alien menace, the Troft, who are too powerful for normal humans to defeat). With the Troft conflict in a stalemate, a new threat comes to the Cobra worlds from a sister empire, the Dominion of Man. In an attempt to consolidate power, the Dominion of Man begins a campaign of enslavement.
While a search begins to find a human ally in the Qasaman empire, Cobra Merrick Moreau sets out to fight for the rights on an oppressed human world. Warrior hearts and strength that will bow to no slaver, the Cobras will lead the fight for freedom.