The 13th Warrior is a historical fiction action film based on the novel Eaters of the Dead by Michael Crichton.
Their numbers dwindling and their position all but indefensible, an ancient völva of the village tells them to track the Wendol to their lair and destroy their leaders, the “Mother of the Wendol” and their Warlord who wears “the horns of power”.
Ahmad ibn Fadlan is a court poet to the Caliph of Baghdad, until his amorous encounter with the wife of an influential noble gets him exiled as an “ambassador” to Northern Barbarians.
Traveling with Melchisidek, his caravan is saved from Turkic raiders by the appearance of Norsemen (presumably Varangian).
Taking refuge at their settlement on the Volga river, communications are established through Melchisidek and Herger, a Norseman who speaks Latin.
Ahmad and Melchisidek are in time to witness a fight, which establishes Buliwyf as heir apparent, followed by the Viking funeral of their dead king, cremated together with a young woman who agreed to accompany him to Valhalla.
A youth enters the camp requesting Buliwyf’s aid: his father’s kingdom in the far north is under attack from an ancient evil so frightening that even the bravest warriors dare not name it.
The “angel of death”, a völva(wisewoman), determines the mission will be successful if thirteen warriors go to face this danger—but the thirteenth must not be a Norseman.
Ahmad is recruited against his will.