After losing his horse in a running gunfight with Comancheros, ex-Yankee Adam Dawson walks into the frontier town of Pinto, Texas, where his life becomes a ticking time bomb set off by a bloody fistfight.
Chad Walker is also an ex-Yankee. He's physically crippled from a Confederate bullet, mentally warped, and bitter. He feels a kinship toward his Yankee comrade and offers Dawson a job on his ranch.
Soon after reaching the ranch, Dawson realizes that Walker's wife, Lorena, is a virtual prisoner in her own home. Lorena believes Dawson to be her passport to freedom from her abusive husband, as well as her passport to his riches-all it takes is murder. And so the seductive Lorena sets her sights on Dawson.
Torn between naked desire and duty, Adam Dawson realizes he can have it all: the ranch, the money, an empire-and the beautiful Lorena . . . all it takes is murder.