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Alec McLennan, who comes from a family of Scottish American tuna fishermen, has hopes of someday becoming a lawyer. Alec's boyhood friend, Frankie Pereira, whose Portuguese family, including brother Silvestre, are also tuna fishermen, decides to make some money by booking bets at the racetrack. After accepting a bet from an insurance salesman, a bully named Ransome, Frankie neglects to place the wager, and instead, pockets the money. When Ransome's horse wins, paying 10-to-1, Frankie flees, leaving Alec to answer for the debt. In order to earn the money to pay Ransome the $2,000 Frankie owes him, Alec leaves home and takes a job on a boat owned by the Pereira family. Later, Alec's father becomes angry that Alec is working on the boat and disowns him, forcing Alec to become a boarder in the Pereira home. There, Alec incurs the wrath of Silvestre, who torments him while he is at work on the boat. When he later saves Silvestre's life, however, Alec wins his friendship. Papa Pereira notices that Alec's pocketbook is often empty, despite the money that he is paid after each trip, and becomes suspicious. When Frankie's sister Bianca also becomes suspicious, she tells a fisherman named Manuel about it. Later, Manuel forces a confession from Ransome, who admits that he has been extorting Frankie's debt from Alec. Meanwhile, Frankie, who has been working as an exercise boy and jockey at a racetrack, has also been paying off Ransome. Later, Ransome is forced to return Alec's money, and when Alec's family learns why he left home, they forgive him.