A third-generation Naval officer, Scott Hunter was raised to be a captain in the Imperial starfleet. His career is soaring until he panics during a skirmish with the rebellion, a moment of weakness that gets half his crew killed. The Empire gives him a choice—quit the service, or join a Hell Squad.
The Hell Squads are one-way planetary scouts—outcasts sent to explore new worlds and determine whether or not they are habitable. Their task is simple: either survive or die. For one whose whole life is the Navy, this was never a choice at all. On his first Hell Squad mission, Hunter leads a motley team of hard-nosed rebels to the volcano planet of Wolf IV. After a bumpy landing, they find that what was supposed to be a hospitable planet is actually completely barren. On a world that was meant to hold new life, why does there seem to be death all around?