Spain 1812. After Ciudad Rodrigo, Teresa tells Sharpe that they have a baby daughter. In Badajoz, the next siege target. Meanwhile, a new commander has taken over the South Essex, along with the murderous Sgt. Obadiah Hakeswill, an old enemy of Sharpe's from India days. But a new commander means a captain trying to turn the Rifles into red-jackets, and Sharpe's only hope to command his company again is the Forlorn one.