Ten years after rain ceases to fall, Oregon turns into a dry wasteland, and the survivors spend their time desperately trying to locate enough water to survive and avoiding hostile scavengers. Kendal takes care of fellow orphan Dean, who is near death from kidney failure. Her friend Gabriel, who lives on a nearby farm, urges her to join him, but she refuses to abandon Dean. One day, after hearing a cry for help on their two-way radio, Kendal leaves to assist them. She finds that it is a trap to ensnare the family's neighbors. Kendal hides as marauders kill off the remaining family members, unable to save them, then sneaks back to her house in the dark.