The son of a shipping magnate, William Cabott Weston III is determined to make his fortune in the news industry. He finds a job with the Chicago Tribune and is assigned to cover the recent attack on Columbus, New Mexico, by Pancho Villa. In Columbus, Weston meets Idaho lumberjack, Monte Segundo. Unknown to Weston, Segundo is haunted by a recurring nightmare and has developed an inexplicable desire to volunteer for the Punitive Expedition and join the Apache scouts into Mexico. On impulse, Weston accompanies him. On their journey, Monte leaves a trail of dead men and becomes known to the peons as the legendary EL Muerte, a fact that may alter the course of history.