Travel the Oregon Trail in 1845 with independent 18 year-old Rebecca Pierce and her mother Sarah. Meet Zachary Miller who manages to steal Rebecca's heart despite her personal vow to make her father's dream come true. There is no place for love or distraction. Learn to dislike Silas Smith who will stop at nothing, including murder, to make his own selfish goal of becoming "somebody" occur.
Following several months of clearing land, building homes, fencing, and planning a double wedding at Christmas a blizzard forces Rebecca Pierce and Zachary Miller along with their friends from the wagon train, Brent Henry and Sally Hendricks to postpone their weddings. February, and the promise of spring, becomes the perfect timing for the double wedding the new community has been anticipating.
Eighteen months after Zachary Miller and Rebecca Pierce settle in the Oregon Territory Zachary’s family arrive in the new community to join them. James and Elizabeth Miller and their daughters Katie and Eileen finish their trek tired, dirty, and grief stricken. Zachary’s youngest sister died of cholera near the end of the ordeal. Bereavement shadows the reunion along with a palpable tension between James Miller and his oldest daughter, Katie, who wants to be a school teacher despite the fact her father insists she marry as is customary. School teachers were not allowed to be married or betrothed. Katie is stubborn and will do whatever it takes to become the teacher she envisioned.
Aaron Smith was twelve years old in 1845 when he crossed the country with his parents when they agreed to travel with Rebecca and Sarah Pierce and help them handle their second wagon and the livestock. Now, at the age of 18 he hires on as a scout to ride east and return with a new group of hopeful emigrants. Traveling alone he dwells on the murder of his mother, the cruelty and disappearance of his father, the kindness of Sarah and Rebecca Pierce when they took him in as their own. He learned to have hope and honor despite the tragedies and uncertainties in the early years of his life. Now, he had to learn how to be a man.