After a gruesome killing at the Carlton County Livestock Feedyard, Sheriff Sam Abbot, Undersheriff Lottie Albright, and her ranching husband deput, know their resources are over-stretched. Still, none of their team or neighboring law enforcement in Western Kansas welcomes the idea of a regional crime center. KBI Agent Dimon suggests the murder may not be a simple local affair. Unconvinced, Lottie--still director of the historical society--calls for stories from families whose ancestors were part of groups colonizing Kansas, hoping to uncover information for the investigation. Dona Francisca Diaz, ancient head of one such clan, arrives at the society with her great-granddaughter. It turns out, Francisca's great-grandson Victor was the murder victim. Francisca insists he knows why her grandson was killed, claiming to have ancient documents that can clarify everything. At Dona Francisca's invitation, Lottie visits the Diaz property and gets several surprises. In a drought-ridden area, the land is lush. There are hints of a mysterious family treasure. And Francisca, a fabled curandera with terribly damaged hands, seeks an heir to her skills and knowledge. With Victor dead and his sister vowed to become a nun, Francisca has selected Lottie. Reluctant yet fascinated, Lottie agrees. And that's just the first step into a family history fraught down the generations. Will it also hold the key to murder and other terrible crimes?