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Conan the Barbarian #136
Conan the Barbarian Vol 1 136
Date: July, 1982
Cover: John Buscema
Writer: Bruce Jones
Penciller: John Buscema
Inker: Danny Bulanadi, Mel Candido
Colorist: George Roussos
Letterer: Janice Chiang
Editor: Louise Jones
Title: "The River of Death"

Major Characters[]

  • Conan (Previous appearance in CB-135; next appearance in CB-137).

Minor Characters[]

  • Eral of Taurian (First and only appearance to date).
  • Dratha (First and only appearance to date; dies in this issue). Water monster.
  • Dralos (First and only appearance to date). Water monster.


  • Northwest Gunderland, along the Black River

Time Frame[]

  • Two days


Conan is exploring the Black River in Gunderland when he hears the screams of a woman being savagely beaten by a group of hooded men who seem intent on kidnapping her baby, Conan chases and kills the men, but when he returns with the swaddled infant, the mother is dead. The sounds of choking lead him to a hanged man, barely alive, and Conan cuts him down. His name is Eral, and he and his sister were returning the baby to its father up the river while the monks of Yaba Nutchi intend to sacrifice the child to the river monster Dratha. In return for a large reward, Conan agrees to help Eral deliver the child and they take Eral's raft. The journey down the river is eventful, as Dratha sends tentacle-like vines to pull them into the water, and unleashes tidal waves, fog, and whirlpools, but the men make it to the loch at end of the river. They prepare to deliver the child to its father, but a cloud of insects surrounds and bites at them. Conan sets fire to the raft and when the smoke drives the insects away, he frantically puts out the fire, just as the monstrous Dratha herself approaches -a hideous tentacled beast. It snatches the child, but Conan hurls a sword through the creature's eye and it dies. Eral takes the child as another tentacled sea monster with a humanoid head appears, and Eral willingly gives it the child. A horrified and furious Conan turns on Eral, but Eral points to the baby is in fact the child of the monster, Dralos. Dralos removes the swaddling blanket revealing the child's tentacled body. A jealous Dratha had tried to kill the child and directed her monks to kill it, when all Dralos, who could not leave the loch, wanted was his son back. The two creatures descend into the water and Eral points out Conan's reward - the ground around the lake is littered with gold rocks.


  • The Chronicles of Conan 18 - Isle of the Dead and Other Stories
Conan Chronology
Previous Appearance:
Conan the Barbarian #135
Conan the Barbarian #136 Next Appearance:
Conan the Barbarian #137
Conan the Barbarian
Previous Issue:
Conan the Barbarian #135
Conan the Barbarian #136 Next Issue:
Conan the Barbarian #137