War breaks out in Derlavai a generation or two after the Six Years war. Most of the countries that declare war on Algarve do so only half-heartedly, allowing the Algarvians to use that reluctancy to their advantage. The Algarvians split Forthweg with Unkerlant and then overrun Valmiera, Jelgava, and Sibiu, while Unkerlant wrests away part of Zuwayza. Lagoas joins the war when Sibiu is taken. The book ends when the Algarvians "get the drop on" the Unkerlanters in Forthweg (who were plotting to attack them first). Kuusamo, meanwhile, tries to seize Obuda from Gyongyos but fails. Yanina succeeds in gaining control of the Land of the Ice People.