In the enchanted city of Turai, the royal family is corrupt, the politicians can be bought, and the civil guards have better things to do than guarding. Thraxas, the overweight and somewhat disreputable private eye working out of an even more disreputable neighborhood, has often grumbled about that sorry state of affairs. Unfortunately, the state of affairs has suddenly gotten much worse, and Thraxas has more to worry about than where his next meal and beer are coming from. The city is under siege by an army of rampaging Orcs, and now he not only has to regularly take part in standing guard duty on the stout walls, the only thing between the Orcs and TuraiAs destruction, but he also has a mystery to solve. A ship has managed to slip past the hordes of Orcs and made port in Turai. It was carrying a powerful magical talisman called the "Ocean Storm" which, used by the enemy, could raise a storm powerful enough to topple the city walls and let the Orcs in to pillage and slaughter. And it, along with the captain of the ship, mysteriously disappeared as soon as the ship had docked. If Thraxas doesnAt locate the "Ocean Storm" before it falls into the wrong hands, Turai will be doomed. Which could seriously interfere with the big card game that Thraxas had been looking forward to. . . .