Deputy Sheriff Lou Ford is a pillar of the community in his small Texas town, patient and apparently thoughtful. Some people think he's a little slow and maybe boring, but that's the worst they say about him. But then nobody knows about what Lou calls his 'sickness'. It nearly got him put away when he was younger, but his adopted brother took the rap for that. But now the sickness that has been lying dormant for a while is about to surface again and the consequences are brutal and devastating.