Only one man stands between Napoleon's army and a British defeat--Major Richard Sharpe. A band of renegades led by Sharpe's vicious mortal enemy, Obadiah Hakeswill, holds a group of British and French women hostage in a strategic mountain pass. Newly promoted, Major Sharpe is given the task of rescuing them. On the other side of the pass, Napoleon's Grande Armee seeks to smash through and crush the British army in Portugal. Sharpe has only the support of his own company and the new Rocket Troop--the last word in military incompetence--but he cannot afford to contemplate defeat. To surrender or fail would mean the end of the war for the Allied armies. Outnumbered and attacked from two sides, Sharpe must hold his ground or die in the attempt.