Rose Mills, thinking she was lovingly placed in a stocking with her name on a piece of paper when her parents could not provide for her learns later that her name is simply the label of the stocking mill that made the sock! Rosie did not mind the orphanage so much, but she missed having a home to call her own. However, the methodology she chose to find it was quite outlandish in her day.....that of simply declaring herself an employee and jumping on a wagon heading to the Kansas prairie. Talented and witty, Rose quickly makes friends, but cannot even dent the hard shell of the man she works for in spite of the fact his 5 yr. old son adores Rose. Seth's wife is dead, and he did not even know he had a son until after the civil war was over....then when he claimed him, his dead wife's family set out to recapture the boy and/or kill Seth. Seth himself had not had a loving father, so he had no idea how to be one! The boy did not even know his Pa, so he gave him a hard time! Rosie was the only one the boy related to and Seth wanted no part of it! Rosie made her home in the crude barn with the animals, tilled the land, cooked the meals, cared for the boy and after the floating bridge was built....collected "tolls" from travelers without her employer's knowledge.....but saved him and his 2 closest friends from certain ruin by her ingenuity. A neighbor, a large German man courted Rosie and proposed marriage....as good an offer as she was likely to get and a promise of a home of her own for the very first time in her life. But something was not right....something was missing. When her 6 month "job" was finished, 20 yr. old Rosie put herself on a stagecoach bound for the return trip to the orphanage as a paid worker when the unimaginable happened. I can hardly wait for the sequel!