Season 1, Episode 2
The Plum Tree
Young Eli must learn how to live among the Comanches in 1849. In 1915, Eli and Pete clash over how to respond to an unexpected attack on their home.
Flashback to 1849, a young Eli flees through the wilderness. A Comanche pursues him on horse and knocks him to the ground.
In the present, Eli assesses the destruction at his oil derrick and vows to build another rig. He orders Phineas to procure more bank money. Phineas suggests they generate money by selling off land, but Eli refuses.
Tom guards a shed on the McCullough ranch. Jeannie tries to chat him up but he shoos her away. Inside the shed, Cesar is gagged and strung up by the arms.
In 1849, the Comanche hoist Eli above a fire as punishment for his attempted escape. Prairie Flower, one of the Comanche women, spits in his face. Eli struggles as flames lick at his feet. Toshaway finally snuffs out the fire. The Comanche cut Eli down and the women beat him up.
At the García residence, Ana tells Maria that Cesar didn’t return home the previous night.
In the shed, Eli interrogates Cesar about the oil rig and beats him with a bat. Cesar remains silent.
Maria visits Sheriff Graham about Cesar’s disappearance and denies Cesar’s involvement in the destruction of Eli’s oil rig. She points out that most voters in the area are Mexican and threatens voter reprisal if the sheriff refuses to investigate Cesar’s disappearance.
Eli continues to interrogate Cesar about the activities of the Sediciosos. Cesar remains silent. Eli strikes him with the bat.
Outside, Pete questions how long Eli plans to torture Cesar. Sheriff Graham pulls up to the house. Pete suggests they turn Cesar over to the sheriff, but Eli says the law will not help them.
Sheriff Graham confronts Eli about Cesar’s disappearance, but Eli pretends to know nothing. Sheriff Graham admits that the only reason he’s investigating Cesar’s disappearance is because he needs the Mexican vote in the upcoming election. Eli offers to donate $200 to Sheriff Graham’s campaign.
In 1849, young Eli scrapes pelts with a group of Comanche women. Prairie Flower hits him with a stick for working too slowly. That night, Eli cries in his tent.
Maria shows Pedro some papers from Cesar’s desk that betray his rebel activities. Guessing that Pedro already knew about Cesar’s activities, she asks what happens next. “Take care of your sister,” Pedro simply says.
Pete lowers Cesar from his hanging position and advises Cesar to think about how his death will impact his family. He asks who’s been stealing their cattle and offers to let Cesar and his family move safely to Mexico if he provides information. Cesar refuses to believe Pete.
In the main house, Phineas assures Sally that they’re going to build another rig. Sally shares her desire to sell the land and move to a different town. Phineas calls her the rock of the family. Sally hugs him and jokes that she married the wrong brother.
Eli meets with Pedro in the woods. Pedro offers to disown Cesar in exchange for peace between their families. Eli asks if Pedro will replace his rig. Pedro, in turn, asks if Eli will replace his dead hand Armando. They part ways without reaching a resolution.
Jeannie sees Pete carrying a plate of food through the house. Pete jokes with Jeannie about future suitors. Jeannie declares that she’ll shoot any suitor who approaches her.
Pete gives Cesar some food and asks Cesar about his family history. Cesar says that his father was killed for a crime he didn’t commit simply because he was Mexican. Pete expresses sympathy.
Maria tries to comfort Ana about Cesar’s disappearance. Ana says that she knew about Cesar’s rebel activities and guesses that he’s dead.
Pete warns Cesar that violence will erupt if the race war continues and argues that Mexicans just want good jobs and safety. Cesar disagrees and warns Pete that a group of Mexican patriots recently drafted a secret manifesto. He insists that Mexicans will reclaim their land from the United States.
Phineas informs Eli that he secured a meeting with a potential investor in Austin — a ten-hour drive away — the following morning.
Eli returns to the shed and tells Pete they’re out of time. Eli cuts off Cesar’s ear and demands to know who blew up his rig. Cesar tells him but insists he doesn’t know where the rebels are heading next.
In 1849, Prairie Flower beats Eli for accidentally ruining a hide. That night, Eli tries to sneak out of the Comanche camp. Toshaway catches him and advises Eli to stand up to Prairie Flower.
Outside the shed, Pete argues with Eli about his violent approach and discourages Eli from taking it further. Eli points out that Cesar may one day retaliate by hurting Sally or Jeannie. “I’m sure you’re going to do the right thing,” he tells Pete.
In 1849, Prairie Flower hits Eli as he works on a hide. Eli fights back and wrestles Prairie Flower to the ground. He finally lets her go and joins a circle of Comanche men, who welcome him.
That night, Prairie Flower sneaks into Eli’s teepee and mounts him.
Pete reads Jeannie a bedtime story then kisses her good night. He goes to the shed and unties Cesar.
Jeannie sees Pete walking Cesar to his car.
Pete drives Cesar to a river and cuts his bonds, instructing him to flee to Mexico. Cesar tackles Pete instead. Gunshots ring out as they struggle. Pete stabs Cesar dead.
Pete buries Cesar in the middle of the night.