Once more Ranger Walt Slade, the hawk-faced scourge of evildoers, buys into trouble on the interests of justice. This time the slick-iron trail starts in the Texas Big Bend country -- where the colors are more vivid, the mountains higher, the men bigger than elsewhere, and the cattle in need of more acreage. When Slade met them, Curly Bill Elkins and his crew claimed to be pursuing rustlers of one of the region's far-flung herds. But the local sheriff, whose path Slade cuts across next, figured Elkins was more likely to be fleeing the law than to be helping it. In fact, he had Curly Bill marked down as a stagecoach robber and a killer. Slade wondered if Curly Bill Elkins really was the Post headquarters insisted he was. So far, nobody had been able to pin anything on Elkins, who, in spite of having a questionable reputation south of the Rio Grande, now posed as a respectable rancher in Texas. Well, it was up to Slade to find out -- that was what he was sent here for.