'Your unquestioning obedience. You will be my man.' Such is Manfred's demand when he offers Rod Ironsides the general managership of the Sonder Ditch gold mine.
For Rod, ambitious and hard-living but totally gripped by the life of the mine, it is the chance of a lifetime. Manfred Steyner is neurotic and ruthless, a compulsive gambler who treats people as counters in a private game and his beautiful, frustrated wife Terry as a social prop and source of cash.
He already despises Rod, and when he discovers Rod's passion for Terry, icy dislike turns to mortal hatred.
Neither Rod nor Manfred, however, understands that they are both involved in a more significant drama. They have become the unwitting tools of a group of powerful men, who for personal and political gain plan to destroy the largest gold mine in the world.