The westward movement was a magnet for the down trodden, a young boy escaping the manacles of a dirt farm in Missouri, and a slave escaping from a plantation in Louisiana. The two exhibit unusual courage and resourcefulness as they mature. Lee, a strapping nineteen year old boy in post war Missouri, leaves home with nothing but the clothes on his back and the pistol he stole from his step father. Eli Delacroix, raised in a small cabin on the edge of a swamp in Louisiana, spent his time hunting and fishing with an old Indian friend named Poppy. Eli was nineteen and fair of skin, with brown hair bleached blonde from the sun. Eli's eyes came open. He wasn't sure what woke him up, maybe it was nothing. But as he started to doze back off, he heard it again. It was a long way off, but it put a fear in him like he never had before, and he knew that the sound of those hounds meant they were on his trail again. Eli was really tired, but he knew he couldn't stay here; he had to run for his life now.