The Ridgemonts are wealthy and influential New Mexico Territory landowners. Their status purportedly is purchased by seemingly inexhaustible capital provided by their reputed Deadmen Hills' gold mine. It's only human nature that others want to share in their bounty. That these others have to die has less to do with keeping the "mine" location a secret than with concealing other mysteries bequeathed by the long-lived and elusive native-American shaman Calenza. Secrets even the Ridgemonts can likely never fully comprehend.