Quanah, a blue-eyed Indian, is proud of his Makah Indian heritage and tradition and seeks in every way possible to follow in the footsteps of his father and grandfather to keep the Makah way of life alive. In planning to take a whale, as allowed by an early American treaty, Quanah involves men from several other tribes. After taking a whale the traditional way, he and his whaling team are arrested. Alana, a young white lawyer, is chosen to defend them. She has to put aside her bias against whaling, which is driven by her love for the animals, as she prepares and argues their defense. Alana has moved to Seattle in the hopes of learning the fate of her grandfather, who disappeared near the area where the whale was taken. As she becomes friends with the young men whose freedom she wins, she asks for help in solving the mystery, and learns Indian history, traditions, and way of life. She spends more and more time with Quanah and finally persuades him to test her theory that it was Wasgo, the legendary sea monster, that took her grandfather’s life.