The Story

A greedy mine owner, Nicholas Montgomery murders Frank Kincaid and his son, Jed, in the mountains of Arizona so he can steal their lucrative gold mine. Another of the man’s sons, John Kincaid, arrives in town and learns of the murders of his father and brother. He is sure Montgomery has committed the murders, but he can’t prove it to the local authorities. Coincidentally Kincaid has not revealed that he is actually Frank Kincaid’s son. 

John Kincaid vows to kill Montgomery himself, but first he wants Montgomery to choke on the stolen mine. He goes to work for Montgomery and discovers that Montgomery actually has severe financial problems due to fraudulent loans he’s taken out to buy more mines. As long as Montgomery can ship gold out of the mountains to make payments on the loans, there is no problem. But bandits in the hills have made such shipments almost impossible. 

Montgomery gets the desperate idea of melting all the gold he has on hand into a single sphere of gold weighing almost 800 pounds and shipping it out unguarded in a wagon. The ball will be too heavy for outlaws to run off with it on a horse. And they would have difficulty disposing of the gold ball even if they did manage to steal it.

Kincaid is aghast; he is convinced Montgomery’s idea will work. He is desperate to stop the gold shipment from getting through and enlists the aid of an outlaw gang to help him steal the gold himself. He plans to melt down the gold ball at an abandoned mine and cast it into manageable ingots to split up with the gang. The loss of the gold will ruin Montgomery financially, and then Kincaid can avenge his father and brother by killing Montgomery. 

But things get complicated. The gang double-crosses Kincaid at first and kidnaps a young woman from a café in Mexico for good measure. But the gang soon realizes it needs Kincaid after all. And the woman’s enraged lover and his gang pursue them. As does Montgomery. And the sheriff and his posse. And Apaches lurking in the area would like to slaughter all of them. This all causes the gold ball to change hands regularly on its journey to that abandoned mine and a forge hot enough to melt gold. 

Greed, murder, betrayal, violence, and—yes—romance all play a part leading up to an explosive climax at the abandoned mine.

Read the Prologue and Chapter 1 

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