Near the turn of the century, as the White Man conquers the West, a desperate family huddles in a mountain cabin during a winter storm. Neighboring Indians rescue the family and nurse an injured boy, John, back to health, despite the famine and their treatment by the White settlers. John is uneasily incorporated into the tribe and consoles himself by drawing lifelike pictures from memory. The pictures are brought to the attention of the tribal council, who recognize John's talent for photographic, realistic drawings as being like the White Man's camera: he steals souls by capturing the images. The tribal elders realize who and what John is: Death itself, robber of souls. What will be John's fate now?