1885: The once beautiful Benevolence, wasted with cancer, traces her ex-husband,
John Henry Summerfield, a gunman on the run, to the tiny town of Los Angeles, California.
Bound to a wheelchair, with only a few weeks to live, she informs him that a vicious
gang of outlaws has kidnapped her daughters and granddaughters from their ranch in
Las Vegas, New Mexico Territory. The oldest daughter is the baby girl he deserted
twenty years earlier to fight for the Union against the rebels; the younger daughter,
sired by a second husband, has been either murdered or sold into prostitution, her
prepubescent granddaughters traded to an Apache band taking refuge in the mountains
north of Las Vegas. Reminding John Henry of the promise he made to her twenty years
ago, Benevolence demands that he hunt down the kidnappers, kill them all, and rescue
the women and girl. Handicapped with missing fingers, he has not handled a pistol
in years, so is reluctant to fulfill Benevolence's demand for revenge.