The Confederate South is at war with the Northern States. There is another war being waged in a microcosm of its own. Ms. Elizabeth Belding, now eighteen, faces an unacceptable situation caused by her father. The only way that she can solve it is with equally unacceptable behavior. Whether she fails or succeeds, it is certain that one of two men will be dead before another day goes by. But which man? She knows what she must do. First, she must write a credible will.
For her father!
The next few years are a difficult nightmare for Elizabeth as war rages on around them, getting ever closer. Then suddenly it is all over. Life might return to normal, whatever that might be like, as the South tries to pick up the pieces. War did not touch them so very hard, but its aftermath does. She watches uneasily as seven heavily armed and ragged Confederate soldiers ride down out of the woods and onto her property, intending . . . what? What follows is truly a baptism by fire. It sets her and her future on a new course.