On the western edge of the Mojave Desert, Bonachon is a law-abiding town, accepting of its peace and orderly existence. But waiting on the outskirts is someone who wants to change all that. Colvin Datch carries a grudge from a crooked past, and when Sheriff Jeff Kayte is killed, the townsfolk are shaken. They demand a response. Ruben Ballard can't stand by and watch a small group of desperate men take over the town. When the newly appointed school mistress, Grace McSwane, and a few loyal townsfolk, offer their support, he realizes he is t alone, and decides to pick up a Colt. But the skilled guns of Datch's murderous son and Virgil Prior are waiting. These are men who have already seized the offices of the law on their way to gain the town, and Ruben has to confront them.