Confederate scouts Sgt. Joseph Pardine and Dauger are scouting the Union forces but can't hear anything. Paradine is contemptuous of Dauger, who is tired of the war. they have a report that the Union forces will be arriving at a nearby town and as they go over their orders, they hear the sound of horseback riders. However, when the riders arrive in town the noise stops. Paradine prepares to enter the town but Dauger suggests they surrender. The sergeant slaps him contemptuously and goes in on his own. Paradine rides into the town and sneaks around. He comes across a troop of Union soldiers... frozen solid. He wonders if they're sick or wounded but can get no response and no answer.
Paradine moves through the town and hears a vase fall from a window. He goes over and finds an old man with a book hiding in the house. The old man, Teal, explains that he used his book on witchcraft to put all of the Union troops to sleep. Paradine doesn't believe him and the old man paralyzes him with a spell, then explains that he is a sorcerer man and invoked the Prince of Darkness to paralyze the troops when they came into town and the other citizens fled. Once he has Paradine's attention, Teal frees him from the spell and boasts that he can immobilize the entire Union army. However, he knows he'll be dead before the end of the day and he needs someone else to cast the spell. Teal thinks Paradine is the man but the sergeant wonders at the cost. The old man admits that they'll have to join forces with the Devil himself.
Paradine returns to the camp and explains to the commanding lieutenant that the Union platoon is paralyzed. The lieutenant thinks he's insane but Paradine informs him that he cast a spell on a nearby troop of Union soldiers. The Confederate patrol leader, Mallory, returns and confirms that the Union soldiers were frozen solid. Paradine notes that they're running low on food and guns and Satan may be their only option. The other men consider it and Dauger says to go ahead and do it. Paradine starts to read but comes to the part saying to revoke God. When Paradine hesitates, Dauger and the lieutenant insist that he go ahead but Paradine refuses, saying it'll be the Confederacy that is damned. Realizing what it will cost them, Paradine burns the book.