Burks chooses a roadside turnout as his killing ground, but redemption, in the form of a cry from his daughter’s baby, breaks the spell. Burks raises the boy, learning to love him with fierce loyalty. Burks rules with a hard, gnarled fist. Thomas Burks grows, returning the love and loyalty of his grandpa. Older, Tom has developed a crush on Sara Tassel, a woman tainted by her association with the brothel. Burks kills a railroad hobo and goes to the brothel for a night of drinking, but Sara has other plans. She intends to prove her love for Burks. The rule of the Sheriff unravels as his affair with Sara, daughter of his best friend, Sid Tassel, increases in intensity. He kills Junior Porter in a bar fight. Remorse drives Burks to confess his love for Sara, but Tom, though hurt, remains loyal until the bloody end of Selmer Burks.