The people of San Angela had no idea Mill Roth left his cattle empire to a woman by the name of Hattie Stamps, the widow of Beaver Stamps, who was Mill's oldest and best friend. Until she showed up claiming the Roth Empire, everything was fine. Some of the citizens, other cattle operators, and people of high standing were filing section claims and branding cattle as fast as they could be caught. Plat Hargis and Floyd Sutter, both wealthy cattle and land owners, were claiming the largest chunks of the properties. Unbeknown to everyone, another group of men was working quietly to get it all.
Lank Lankford, the new sheriff of the town, was caught in the middle. He had left New Mexico and his old friend Hawk Haynes to take the job. He soon realized he would need his old friend's help. Hawk Haynes rounded up some of his men and left right away, knowing he had his own problems.
A gunslinger by the name of Moody Rim was looking to make a reputation; killing the great Hawk Haynes would do that. His way of choice would be shooting Hawk in the back and telling it differently.
When Hawk arrives in San Angela, the number of people wanting him and Sheriff Lankford dead increases rapidly. Too many people stood to lose fortunes if Hattie's will was determined legal. Hattie was tough and unlike any woman anyone had ever met. She spoke her mind and was uninhibited. She had enough men to start a war of any size called for, but she wanted to do things the right way if possible. She decided to play along with Sheriff Lankford and Hawk Haynes. In the doing of it all, Hawk discovers something about himself. A man with a reputation carries a fear of being shot in the back; to his surprise, that isn't his worse fear at all.
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- Jan Hintze