In 1746 the Jacobite rebellion is over, Charles Stewart (Bonny Prince Charlie) is a fugitive, and British soldiers are overrunning the West Highlands. Seventeen-year-old John Wallace, son of a prominent cattle dealer, kills a British officer in self-defence. He is captured by Captain Frederick Scott, the officer’s uncle, and narrowly escapes death. Furious at the death of his nephew, Captain Scott takes brutal revenge on John’s family. John is swept up in the Highland clearances and exiled to the American colonies. He is cast up on Ile Royale (Cape Breton) and imprisoned by the British, until he escapes into the wilderness and seeks a new beginning in Canada.
Blamed for the death of his nephew, Captain Scott faces a career in ruins. He is ordered to Boston in disgrace and posted to Annapolis Royal, a remote outpost recently captured from the French. Bitter at the injustices perpetrated on him by his superiors, and estranged from his fellow officers, he vents his frustrations on the native population.
John Wallace and Captain Scott will meet again and the blood feud that began in the hills of Scotland will play out its final act in the heart of the Canadian wilderness.