Ryan's predictions of the weather in the Harper Springs area have all been accurate so far - when he realizes they are in for an early winter, everyone must work fast to get the crops harvested and their shelter ready for the arctic air headed their way. Due to the lack of winter clothing and supplies, they can't prepare for the heavy snowfall, high winds, blizzards, and sub-zero temperatures that leave them exposed to hypothermia, frostbite, and common colds that are now turning deadly.
The weather isn't their only problem - an imminent threat from a band of looters circles the perimeter of Harper Springs, halting their plans of rebuilding the small town. Ryan grows leery of people he once trusted and begins to investigate the possibility of a traitor among their group. He secretly follows the suspicious person toward the badlands of New Mexico to gather evidence and prove that his suspicions are justified.
Throughout the constant changing weather, Ryan has asked the same question - why has this happened? Tracking the traitor might get him the answers he needs - or it could reveal a problem so massive that there is no coming back from the damage that has already taken place.