“The Devil in Iron”
Writer: Roy Thomas adopted from story by Robert E. Howard
Artists: John Buscema and Alfredo Alcala
In the Vilayet Sea a Yuetshi tribesman is washed ashore during a storm on the island of Xapur. In the ruins of a temple he finds a figure eight feet tall lying on an alter. He goes and picks up a knife next to the figure. This wakes the giant and he breaks the tribeman’s neck.
Later the Lord of Khawarizm Jehungir Agha is discussing the problem of the Kozaki. Lead by Conan they are causing unending raids on Turan. Jehungir is in danger of losing his position if they aren’t stopped. His councilor has a plan. He has noticed in meeting to exchange hostages that Conan has taken a fancy to a beautiful slave girl named Octavia. He plans to let it be known through spies that the slave girl has escaped to the island of Xapur. He feels that Conan will come alone to get the girl. So they have Octavia escape and go to the island. Once their she finds that a city has just recently been build and she is captured.
Conan comes to the island and also finds the city. Exploring it he comes on a beautiful woman who talks about the past and falls asleep. Many inhabitants are also asleep. A voice later tells Conan how the ancient city of Dagonia was build by a godlike being made of iron. Khosatral Khel then ruled over the city until a Yuetshi shaman made a knife from a meteor that could defeat Khosatral. He has laid in the temple until inadvertently freed. Then using his sorcery he raises the city and brings back the dead. He fall asleep when daylight comes.
Conan eventually finds Octavia but so has Khosatral Khel. They manage to escape him and Conan goes to the temple to retrieve the knife. He has to fight a giant green snake. Later out of the city he meets Jehungir who had just escaped from Khostral after he slaughtered his men. Conan fights Jehungir and kills him. Then with the knife also defeats Khosatral. He than takes that slave girl with him.
“Arms and the Manner”
By Samual James Maronie
Photography by John L. Focht
An article on the Creative Society for Anachronism and the armor that they use. They interview Brian Flax who makes the armor and he demonstrates how it is used.
“A Portfolio of Robert E. Howard”
A portfolio from six artists of six characters from Robert E. Howard. The artists are John Buscema, Howard Chaykin, Tim Conrad and John Severin. The characters are Conan, Solomon Kane, Red Sonja, Bran Mak Morn, Kull and Thugra from Amulric.
“Conan in the City of Blood”
By Fred Blosser
Illustrations by George Barr
A review of Red Nails that just came out in a new hardcover edition.
“The Hyborian Age Chapter 4: The Beginning of the End”
Writer: Roy Thomas based on essay by Robert E. Howard
Artist: Walt Simonson
Five hundred years after Conan Aquilonia has grown to dominate the western Hyborian world. Arus a Nemedian priest of Mitra sets out to convert the heathen Picts. He finds a chief named Gorm who seems tolerant. So tells him about the western world but the chief is inspired to conquer the Hyborians.
“An Interview with Conan Artist John Buscema”
conducted by John Coltier and John Wren
Talks with artist John Buscema on his upbringing in Manhattan. His first job in advertising and what he likes to draw.
Well another Howard story and this was just excellent. Seems the Vilayet sea is filled with living metal and lost civilizations on the islands. This was such a fascinating story as Conan finds this mysterious city. His kickass battle with a giant snake where he splits the head right down the middle. And of course his battles with his enemies and getting the girl at the end. This was Howard at his best.
The articles were well done. I loved the interview with Buscema. A very informative article. Also the history of the Hyborian age is very interesting and shows how Howard devoted such detail to the history of his imaginary world.