The curse of the fabulous Inca treasure, hidden after Atahualpa's surrender to Pizarro, follows the young Indian girl, Illoma. Her husband-to-be is tortured; her father kills and is jailed; she becomes the mistress of the Teniente to free her father but his death cheats the law. In leading the Teniente to the lost city, she suicides rather than let him return to civilization with the Treasure and the mountain is closed on it forever. The Spanish colonial rule in its clash of political and religious power, in its drives of greed and deceit is contrasted with Indian honor, passivity and seeming dullness and silence, where coca leaves quiet the hunger and injustice, and the mirage of the legend of the Treasure rouses good and evil and confronts strength against weakness for survival. A plain fabric of history that uses lore rather than artifice for its base.