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Its 1886, and Chicago is booming, but for nineteen-year-old Torsten Pilkvist, American-born son of Swedish immigrants, its not big enough. After tragically losing a rare love, Tory immerses himself in the pages of a Wild West mail-order bride magazine, where he stumbles on the advertisement of frontiersman and Civil War veteran Franklin Ausmus. Torsten and Franklin begin an innocent correspondenceor as innocent as it can be, considering Torsten keeps his true gender hidden. But when his parents discover the letters, Tory is forced out on his own. With nowhere else to go, he boards a train for the Black Hills and Franklins homestead, Moonlight Gulch.

Franklin figures Tory for a drifter, but hes lonely after ten years of living in the backcountry alone, and his girl in Chicago has mysteriously stopped writing, so he hires Tory on as his ranch hand. Franklin and Tory grow closer while defending the land from outlaws who want the untapped gold in Franklins creek, but then Franklin learns Torys true identity and banishes Tory from his sight. Will their lives be forever tattered, or will Torstenoverhearing a desperate last-ditch scheme to snatch Franklins goldbe able to save Moonlight Gulch and his final shot at love?

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