Wan Tengri was Khitai's westernmost city, ruled by a coterie of wizards who dictated a curfew from the center-most, highest tower of all, which emanated flame winds capable to lighten up the night. Conan was smuggled into the city to find out if it was worth King Yildiz's efforts to conquer. Chased by the guards after robbing a merchant, the Cimmerian sought refuge in Tsien Hui's home, but the soldier found him soon and he was forced to follow an harem girl through a secret underwater passage. After having defeated her true monstrous form, desperate for air, Conan swam toward a light source and climbed out of a pool elsewhere on the estate. He collapsed in pain and exhaustion, not noticing the slouching, shadowed form moving towards him.[1]

Conan was the found by the beggar Bourtai, who attempted to rob him. Chased again by the soldiers, the two took refuge underground, into the hideout of the local thieves' guild. Since the Cimmerian wished to save Kassar the sheep-herd from the wizards' fury, he then agree to escort Conan into the underground passages of the Flame Tower.[2]

As soon as the flame winds faded and swiftly died, turning to nothing but ashes and smoke, an all-out broke out among the factions of the seven wizards, who were then assaulted and killed by the rioting city folk. The Princess was then restored as the legitimate ruler of Wan Tengri, and rewarded Conan with a galley and boxes full of treasure. However, as he and Bourtai sailed away, the Princess reignited the flames, and magically transported her treasure back to her, leaving Conan and his companion adrift on the vast lake beyond.[3]

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