Though her father suspected no betrayal by Matt Deering, his ex-partner in the Defender silver mine at Virginia City, Darcy, his daughter, was convinced that he had been cheated. The Nugget, Matt's new mine, was so prosperous that Jimmie, Matt's son, was apologetic about his friendship with Darcy. At the boarding house Darcy finds a friend in canny Timothy Goss, who steers her through a maze of chicanery to uncover Deering's treachery. A cave-in at the Nugget prompts an offer from Deering to buy the Defender, but Darcy outwits him by burning the contract before her father can sign it. Jimmie overhears his father planning to undermine the Defender mine and Darcy's father is then convinced that his claim has real value, and that Deering had defrauded him. The story starts swiftly, with a valid picture of Virginia City in its heyday. Darcy and her father are appealing and the narrative is well paced.