The Commonwealth of Stars, COS, has been invaded by the Issog, a bat-like species, who not only considers the humans animals but livestock. Over the past several years of war they have encroached farther into COS space and the consensus is for the Issog to defeat the Commonwealth within the next five years. To made matters worse, the Arrith nation, a lizard-like species, is building up its fleets to take on the winner—the bats or the monkeys as they refer to them--since the winner will have all but exhausted its navy.
The Commonwealth's only hope is a newly developed technology can help them defeat the Issog and have sufficient resources afterward to force the Arrith to continue their twenty year nonaggression treaty. But the technology is unproved and possibly beyond the humans' ability to adapt.