One blow to the temple with his fist brought Rattler to the ground unconscious, and earned him the name, ‘Old Shatterhand’. The name stuck. From that day on he was Old Shatterhand to all but the wily frontiersman Sam Hawkens, his friend and mentor who just couldn’t bear to give up calling him a Greenhorn.
Fate took the young immigrant teacher from a comfortable tutoring position in St. Louis to a survey job for the railroad between the Rio Pecos and Canadian Rivers in New Mexico. It was there that the inborn instincts of a true frontiersman could harness his mighty physical strength, his unerring marksmanship, and total fearlessness in the face of danger or even imminent death.
Facing down a charging bull buffalo with only a pair of pistols, or tangling with a mighty grizzly with his Bowie knife was one thing. But fulfilling Klekih – petra’s dying request to befriend and watch over Winnetou was quite another. They were surveying on Apache territory without permission, and now that a drunken Rattler had senselessly shot the ‘White Father’ and teacher of the Apache nation, they were mortal enemies.
Both men admitted later on that the first look into one another’s eyes had stirred a sense of admiration. Now it seemed all but hopeless. But to Old Shatterhand, a promise made is a promise kept. He would not give up until it was done, no matter what the cost.
Hair-raising adventure spiced with the acid humor of the wry Sam Hawkens leaves room for the high moral values of both Winnetou and Old Shatterhand in the fight of good against evil, and a life-long blood brotherhood between the two men.