|Author||William Patrick Davis|
|Publication Date||July 1, 2001|
Have you ever wondered what it would have been like to travel with the Spanish Conquistadors to the New World? Now you can experience it.
After Hernandez Pizarro's younger brother dies in a drowning accident, Hernandez feels responsible and begins to doubt his courage because he did not help him. The too-small grave in the back yard haunts him, so he gladly seizes an opportunity to travel with Captain Martinez Pizarro, his uncle and an officer in the Grand Pizarro Military Tradition.
From Seville Hernandez embarks on a journey that will take him across an ocean and into the mysterious interior of New Spain under the command of the ambitious conquistador, Hernando Cortes. Desperate to escape the guilt of his brother's death and prove his courage, Hernandez makes daring rescues of fellow soldiers in peril. Elevating the welfare of individuals above the army as a whole places him at odds with Sergeant Pedro Casa, a disciplinary conquistador, and his own dyed-in-the-wool military uncle, Martinez.
When they invade Tenochtitlan, the Aztec capitol, Hernandez is assigned to guard the failing Montezuma. There he falls under the spell of Nahuaxica, the daughter of an Aztec high priest and succumbs to a promise to save her brother, Itzcoatl, who has been slated to die on the pyramid since birth. Hernandez could not save his own brother. Can he save the brother of the one he loves? As Cortes moves to annihilate the Aztec empire, Martinez is captured and scheduled for a twin sacrifice: Martinez, the Spanish captain coupled with Itzcoatl, the groomed offering.
As the Aztec capitol crumbles around him, Hernandez must choose between being true to his promises and rescuing Itzcoatl and Martinez or fighting alongside his troops in the Grand Pizarro Military Tradition. Either choice could change his life forever - or end it.