In 1919, the Constable of Palm Springs was a younger man named Riley. The city was nonetheless a sleepy little hamlet earlier than the age of celeb got here to its doorstep. The residents have been onerous working earthy individuals who'd discovered to dwell in a rugged local weather amidst a tribe of principally docile Indians. But there was a shadow lurking over the city and youngsters would disappear underneath its cloud. Mainly the shadow stayed over Tahquitz canyon, hanging there as a warning to not enter. Legend says that when the shadow is in the canyon, all is protected, as a result of the witch hides in its embrace. But on cloudy days or at night time time when the shadow is in all places, you could beware-for the witch is out!
In Riley's story, he’s requested to guide a posse into the canyon after the disappearance of slightly Indian lady who’s the daughter of a maid of one of the metropolis's elite; An early auto mechanic named Zaddie Bunker.
Zaddie brings collectively a dozen or so metropolis leaders to Lykken's General Store, now a historic web site, the place every particular person shares a narrative on their private emotions or confrontations with the Witch. Newspaper man Randall Henderson tells the most gripping story of how almost 30 years earlier slightly boy had been kidnapped and compelled to eat his buddy earlier than he might escape. It appeared a technology earlier a posse had fashioned to seize the Witch, which they thought that they had, and ship her off to infamous Yuma Federal Prison in the center of the desert wasteland. Unfortunately the stage coach she was on by no means made it and all of her cavalry dragoon escort mysteriously.
So Riley's posse takes off to catch the witch with half a dozen white settlers, an historic Indian Medicine man (Pedro Chino) and a younger Indian boy named Jesus. Along the method, Pedro tells the boy of even earlier occasions of the tribe and their interplay with the Witch. Her identify is Mena and she was not all the time dangerous. Hundreds of years in the past she had been introduced forth by Spanish explorers of their quest for gold. She had known as upon the gods for an opportunity to flee and a husband who would shield. The Mountain god answered, destroying the Spanish longboats looking out as far north as a primordial Salton Sea in a hail of lightning. She swam ashore and slowly walked towards the tall mountain peak she might see the distance and when she noticed the canyon and the Medicine Man Tahquitz who lived there, she knew she had discovered residence.
For a very long time she and her man helped the Cahuilla. But over time, there drugs turned bitter and their most well-known spell of sucking the dangerous out of individuals started to attract the complete soul of their sufferers and in doing so extended their lives. Occasionally, Mena tricked and killed Tahquitz, who continues to lie as an everlasting spirit of the Cahuilla.
The posse lastly reaches her camp web site and kills her, although not with out injury to their very own group. One member, Big John, is left behind to observe the embers of the Witch burn, for that is the solely true strategy to know she is useless. But earlier than she is turned to ash he’s chased away by coyotes and different animals.