Vint and a sheriff locate two Mexicans they have been pursuing for horse stealing. One escapes, but Vint is shocked to witness the sheriff shoot down the other one while he has his hands up. Vint decides to continue the pursuit of the other thief, if only to make sure he is brought in alive. When he locates the man, along with his beautiful sister, he learns the sheriff has been lying to him about many things.
A cocky and cynical young man who just came into town looking for a saloon woman is the main suspect when a robbery takes place, but is released as there are no witnesses to identify him. The teenage daughter of Vint's rancher friend is smitten with the young man, much to her father's chagrin. Vint tries to see if he can change the hotheaded youth or else discourage the girl from him.
Just after Vint manages to avert war between the Indians and a white town, a new situation arises: he finds the chief's daughter sleeping in his room, wishing to become his wife. The chief says that according to custom Vint must marry her by the evening or war will be declared on the town again.
While riding in an area where road agents have recently held up a stage and killed three men, Vint is himself held up by a rather inept would-be road agent, who happens to be a young woman, and who manages to save his life.
Vint comes to the town of Dobie with evidence clearing a resident of murder, only to find that the man has already been convicted and hanged. Though the town's residents want him to leave because he reminds them of their mistake, Vint is determined to stay until he finds the real killer.
Vint learns that a gambling house worker he knows is the daughter of a Quaker couple who believe she is dead. The girl is in an abusive relationship with the owner of the gambling house, who will not let her leave him.
Vint brings an orphaned Southern boy to live with his Northern uncle's family. But the boy still has resentments toward the North, and is angry that his uncle fought on a different side from his father, who was killed in the war.
After being forced to kill a young hood in self defense, Vint rides to the man's sister's ranch, only to find she has already put out a bounty on him for shooting her brother in the back. Since she does not know who he is, Vint works for her under a different name, until he can convince her the killing did not happen in the way she was told.
A priest asks Vint to accompany him, along with two nuns, to check on the status of a mission in the midst of hostile Indian territory. Vint agrees, even though he knows that whites are forbidden in the area and are not known to have ever returned alive.
Vint's friend Olaf Burland plans to take his newly earned money back to his farm in native Minnesota, but Vint fears that the gullible Olaf will be easy prey for some who want to separate him from the money and will use any trick to do it. A crooked trail hand and a saloon owner plan to do just that, with the help of a saloon hostess who actually has desires similar to Olaf's.
An artist begins painting a portrait of a saloon girl, much to the displeasure of the owner of the saloon, who regards her as his woman, and thinks that the portrait, which will be hung on his wall, will show more of her than he wants to share with others.
Vint takes the son of an ex-gunfighter friend out of a saloon where the young man was in danger of losing all the money he had just received from his first trail drive. The boy is ashamed of his father's past and refuses to go back with Vint, but lets Vint take the money back to his father. When Vint comes to the father's ranch he learns that the boy has been killed, that he has been accused of the murder, and that the father plans to avenge his son's death in a showdown with him.
A rancher, a former major in the Confederate Army, asks Vint to hire on as a ramrod, to be paired with another ramrod whom Vint dislikes. Vint soon learns that the other ramrod has plans to take the ranch for himself, taking advantage of an embarrassing secret he has learned about the Major.
Vint is deputized by a U.S. Marshal and sent to serve notice on a German baron for having a cannon on his land. But the Baron, who has only recently acquired the title, insists he is within his constitutional rights, and sticks Vint in a jail cell. But Vint turns the tables on him.
Vint accompanies three cavalry officers to the shack of a stubborn old Confederate, whom the officers suspect of holding a gold shipment stolen twenty years ago during the Civil War. Vint is surprised to find that the old man does have the gold, that his place is fortified with cannons and Gatling guns, and that the only way he'll give back the gold is if the Northern officers surrender---to him.
Vint visits a former girlfriend, though she is now married, and her husband is now paralyzed and unable to speak, a fact for which she blames herself. Nearby a posse is hunting a ruthless killer who is known to be in the area.
A young woman meets Vint on the trail and tries to hire him to guide her to Abilene, but she changes her mind after her husband and two other men meet them and threaten Vint. Later Vint learns from her that the two men with her husband are killers. Her husband is working with them, planning to rob the bank when a gold shipment comes in.
An old medicine peddler has symptoms which could be serious, but refuses to go to the town doctor to have it checked. The peddler also sells quack medicines to a man who's been told by the doctor to stop drinking for his health's sake. Trouble brews.
Local ranchers are in arms over a series of cattle rustlings, all involving just a few calves taken at a time, and they are blaming the thefts on homesteaders. Vint, assisting the sheriff in looking for the culprits and avoiding bloodshed, is staying at the home of the two elderly Sweet sisters, both animal lovers who are vegetarians and don't believe in raising cows to be killed.
Vint comes to the town of Bluefield to investigate the death of a friend. He learns that the man was murdered for trying to organize small land owners against the town boss who has been using his gunfighter son to intimidate them into making him a partner in their ranch, them forcing them out or killing them. But getting the town boss convicted will not be so easy.