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July 30, 2010


Complete Chronicles of Conan (20). The Black Stranger.

This story was not published in Howard's time as a Conan adventure. Instead it was a pirates adventure for another Robert E. Howard character, Terence Vulmea (I couldn't find this version, sorry). When Howard sent the original story to several publishers, it was rejected. Only as a swashbuckler story it found print.

It tells the story of the hunt for the Treasure of Tranicos. This Tranicos was a pirate that acumulated a fortune and after his dead and that of his companions, he made someone curse his tomb with the gold and riches. 

Conan is running away from a party of Pictish warriors when he find the treasure. A demon tries to kill him and he barely escapes.

Many people are after the same treasure that now Conan knows where it is buried and he lead them to it in hope the demon kills them all and he could steal the treasure without any inconvenience. 

The dangerous party Conan chooses are Count Korzetta, who is also running away from another demon; Black Zarona, a pirate and Strombanni a buccaneer, enemy of the above mentioned.

Conan's plan fails because the Picts appear and kill amost everyone, including themselves. The treasure remains untouched. That was a good joke.

It was a fun story. I don't understand why it was not published as a Conan story back in the 1930s.

More about The Black Stranger:

Image taken from Wikipedia.


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