• Private Richard Sharpe observes the dead animals and soldiers around him as the vultures circle and contemplates desertion.
• Sharpe is in India and it is 1799. He talks with another private about Sergeant Hakeswill who is a terrible person.
• They are moving toward Seringapatam, the capital city of the Kingdom of Mysore and ruled by Tippoo Sultan.
• Hakeswill berates Sharpe about talking while marching and takes his musket to inspect it. He replaces the flint with ordinary stone.
• Later Hakeswill tries to entrap Sharpe into a flogging offense but Sharpe had already found the stone and put in a new flint.
• Tippo's troops advance and the British set up a 700 musket firing line. The British fire a single volley then charge with bayonets.
• Tippoo watches the defeat of his infantry with a French colonel named Gudin who acts as an advisor.
• Gudin suggest to Tippoo that he use...
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