David McKae, Massachusetts born and alone in the world, heads west to Carson City to join his uncle (dead on arrival) when his stagecoach is bushwhacked- all aboard except David are killed -- by Johnny Hadley, a killer and also a mercenary feeding guns to the Indians. Johnny gets a bed and eventually a job through Doherty of the Pony Express who teaches him the responsibility of toting a gun. He also gets involved in the worsening Indian troubles, and, in the final encounter against Chief Eagle whom Hadley has released from prison, loses his best friend as well... Spirited in substance and handling, and well above average in an often impoverished genre. The age group can be extended upwards as well.