Flint Stockton served gallantly at San Jacinto and afterward moved northward intent on gathering stray cattle and horses to start a ranch. He meets Johanna McKenna on a westward wagon train; they marry and strike out on their own to build a family along the Comanche Trace, the ancient Comanche war trails.
Their first son, Cole, seems born to the gun. It is a wild, untamed, lawless land in an era where every mother's son carries a gun and knows how to use it. Some are better than others and with the reputation come stories about those who bear the title gunfighter. Cole's travels put him in contact with ruthless, savage men who are used to having their own way and taking what they want from hapless victims. He is forced to defend himself, and does so with fire in his soul. Out of necessity, he becomes a lonely man, drifting from town to town, untrusting except to himself.
From child on the Texas frontier to adulthood as a man behind the gun, Cole Stockton searches for his destiny, struggles with his direction in life, and emerges as a gunfighter whose moral code makes him a man of justice.