This tale is set in a part of the world that one doesn't normally associate with the horrors of the Second World War - French Indo-China.
It begins in 1940 when a young Scottish soldier kills, by accident, a man in a bar room brawl in Singapore. Instead of trying to explain his actions to the authorities, he runs and stows away on a tramp steamer. When the ship docks McRon slips ashore and discovers he is in French Indo-China. He stumbles into the company of a group of French Foreign Legion soldiers and decides to enlist. He hasn't long finished his training when the Japanese invade.
Although isolated outposts of French soldiers fight the invaders, it isn't long before the Vichy government are forced to sign an armistice. The French are allowed to keep their weapons, and McRon's unit is posted to Hue, where they are employed in building a new camp.
When Japan strikes Pearl Harbor and other American and British bases in South-East Asia, McRon and an American decide to desert as they think the Japanese will imprison them. But they are ambushed in the jungle by an enemy patrol. McRon escapes, but in so doing learns of the Japanese plan to seize complete control of the country, killing the Legion's officers at supper, and imprisoning the Legionnaires.
McRon kills two Japanese sentries in a watch tower and turns the machine-gun mounted in the tower on the Japanese soldiers who are stealthily forming up to capture the sleeping Legionnaires. The French officers are alerted and the plot to murder them at their supper is thwarted. During the fighting McRon is killed, but after the Legion have won, the Legionnaires form a guard of honor and salute their fallen comrade.