Beautiful but shallow, Claire Du Pas is waiting for the right man to come along so she can get married...hopefully one with a fat wallet.
Claire was brought to the town of Three Forks from St. Louis on the promise of matrimony to wealthy rancher John Clemens. But Clemens became disinterested in his mail-order bride and called off the wedding.
Still looking to marry well and use the move to her advantage, Claire shifted her attention to Clemens' spoiled gambler son, Jimmy. Claire's beauty also caught the eye of the local sheriff Wes Garth, who became infatuated with her. She rejected the tall man's advances, but that only made his interest in her grow.
On one fateful night, Wes came to Claire's room to invite her to dinner, but Claire made it clear she wasn't interested. Wes demanded to know why she wanted the pampered rich man's son more than him. The quarrel was interrupted by the town busybody, who alerted Garth to trouble down on the street involving Jimmy and his friends. As he left the room, Claire told Wes to make sure nothing happened to Jimmy. However, the exact opposite occurs. Garth was forced to shoot Jimmy and his own deputy when the men refused to back down from confronting a stranger in town about a card game earlier in the evening. Claire arrived to see Jimmy laid out in the street, stone dead. The stranger asked her if Jimmy was her friend, which she affirmed and left the scene quickly.